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It’s kind of unfortunate, but some ski lines remain on my hit-list year after year. The Northeast Ridge of Mount Moran has been on my list for a few years now, but I’ve only made one attempt to ski it so far.
Last winter was a little thin…snowpack-wise, so I (and my main ski partner Reed Finlay) never gave it a shot. In the spring of 2006, we tried to ski it in a day from the Leigh Lake Trailhead and got stopped on the north side of a prominent gendarme about two-thirds of the way up, near the junction of the green and red lines in the photo above.
I believe Stephen Koch made the first descent of this line (red line…maybe in the late nineties?) and I’ve only heard of a few people having skied it since. One can approach (and descend from) the upper face via a couloir on the southeast side of the mountain (green line), but I think this makes the route a little easier. I don’t think anyone has skied Koch’s line again…which continued on the north side of the gendarme…all the way down to the lake. A coveted descent to say the least.