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A dark forested gully hidden from the world around.


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Map Key

0.3

Miles

0.5

KM

Ski Line

10,214' 3,113 m

High

9,368' 2,856 m

Low

0' 0 m

Up

846' 258 m

Down

47%

Avg Slope (25°)

56%

Max Slope (29°)
Type: Backcountry or Sidecountry

Overview

Relatively easy to access, this line combines steep glade skiing and technical maneuvering through a natural drainage. Route finding skills and understanding how to assess and navigate avalanche terrain are necessary.

Need to Know

Parking is along the highway at the Gavilan Trail #60 trailhead, it usually isn't plowed to accommodate trail users but a few vehicles are often parked here on the shoulder.

Description

Access from the Gavilan Trail #60 and find a route up, depending on snowpack and seasonal conditions the typical route climbs through the forested slopes south of the gully and gains the ridge about halfway to the top of the line. There's some steep pockets to be aware of and avoid on either side of the gully and below the ridge.

The top of the line is obvious when you reach a point where the gully starts, you'll be above the steep gladed slopes to the south and densely forested bowl to the north, where the ridge levels and continues northwest towards the Y Chutes.

The upper section is the steepest, dropping through nicely spaced trees as the slopes on either side become increasingly apparent, and the drainage gully becomes apparent. Snow is often thin on the exposed slope to the north. Nearly halfway down the line the pitch lessens and naturally flows into the gully, trending northeast the lower half often holds colder, deeper snow. There's some downed trees to navigate around, under, over, and between, on a good snow year with a deep snowpack interesting fun pillow features develop. Drop down a short steep pitch near the bottom back onto the Gavilan Trail.

History & Background

Old timers used to talk about stories of ghosts and dark mystery from the 1800's when prospectors found gold and copper deposits and the mining town Amizette was built. Following the miner's, beginning in the 1960's as the ski area was developing Amizette became a lodging village for ski tourists and stray prospectors following tales of unfound gold in these mountains. Bill Austing built the Austing Haus hotel at the bottom of Gavilan Canyon, which was known to be haunted by locals until recently when it was acquired and renovated by the current owners.

Contacts

Shared By:

J. Bella

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 1 vote

#1

in Taos

#228

Overall
  5.0 from 1 vote
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Ski Line Rankings

#1

in Taos

#16

in New Mexico

#228

Overall
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