“A satisfying, dramatic line down the obvious west-most chute on the East Wall.”
— Rachel Vecchitto
Type: In Bounds (completely
inside ski area boundary)
Accessed from the North Pole Gate
, First Notch is the first entrance you encounter as you traverse across the ridge on top of the East Wall. It's a very obvious entrance and a popular line. You can't miss it.
The entrance is often fairly rocky, requiring some side-stepping to get over the rocks and start skiing, but not tough otherwise. In good snow years, you can ski right in.
First Notch is a little bit steep, but mostly wide enough to have plenty of room to choose your turns. The setting in general is awesome and a lot of fun; you're between the rock walls of the chute for the entire descent. There's one choke point about 2/3 of the way down that's around 2 ski widths wide. You can still choose your turns, but being able to hop turn confidently makes things more enjoyable.
Once you're through the choke point, there's just a few more turns until you pop out onto the apron above the lower East Wall traverse.