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Buck Mountain, East Face

Very Difficult

Trail

0.7 mile 1.2 kilometer point to point
Ski Line
Very Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 0' 0 m
Descent: -1,340' -408 m
High: 11,687' 3,562 m
Low: 10,347' 3,154 m

Grade

Avg Slope: 35% (19°)
Max Slope: 53% (28°)
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Trail shared by Ben Johnson

A classic ski-mountaineering objective in Grand Teton National Park.

Ben Johnson
Type: Backcountry or Sidecountry

Description

One of the more distinct snow-covered faces in the valley, the East Face of Buck offers skiers a moderate ski-mountaineering objective. Steep skiing off the summit (40-45 degrees) leads to the lower angled face (25-35 degrees) and a steeper exit couloir (40-45 degrees) back to Timberline Lake and the moderate lower slopes of Stewart's Draw.

Approach from Death Canyon Trailhead, veering north from the standard Wimpy's Ridge/Albright approach to get into Stewart's Draw (right after you leave the Valley Trail and begin climbing seems like a popular spot). Follow Stewart's draw up and up, then switch to boots for the ascent of the "exit couloir" on the North side of the lower East face.

6-8 hours seems to be a reasonable time for those with good fitness to reach the 11,938' summit. Expect around 5,500' of elevation for the day, and don't forget to stop at Dornan's on the way home to grab a beer and admire the face you just skied!

An ice axe is a good one for this route and crampons can be helpful, too.

History & Background

Early descent in May of 1961 by Barry Corbet, Ann LaFarge, and Eliot Goss.

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Check-Ins

Jun 1, 2019
Jeff McGowan
Aug 4, 2016
Sam Vanderhyden

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 1 vote

#3

in Teton Range

#53

Overall
  5.0 from 1 vote
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Ski Line Rankings

#3

in Teton Range

#4

in Wyoming

#53

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Photos

Descending the "Exit Couloir" in sloppy spring conditions. A line out on the face to the right is passable in all but the most meager snow years as well.
Mar 16, 2015 near Moose W…, WY
Video of spring Buck ascent
Mar 16, 2015 near Moose W…, WY
Below the East Face of Buck. The ascent goes up a small couloir just left of the prominent buttress on the right side of the picture, then traverses across and up the East face. Or ascend the East Ridge for a little more spice (4th class)
Mar 16, 2015 near Moose W…, WY
Ascending on the lower East Ridge of Buck Mountain
Mar 16, 2015 near Moose W…, WY

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