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North America, Canada, Nunavut, Baffin Island, Mt. Odin, South Couloir Ski Descent

Mt. Odin, south couloir ski descent. On April 17 Jim Surette, Ken Sauls, and I left our camp at the Windy Lake shelter, with our sights set on skiing a giant couloir which splits the south face of Mt. Odin. It was first climbed in 1974 by a French team and repeated in 2003 by Canadians, who recommended it as a spectacular descent. At 2,143m Odin is the tallest peak on Baffin Island. It took five hours to climb the couloir to a col at 1,640m. The snow at the bottom was rotten, but in the gully proper it turned solid and even had light powder in some sections. From the col it is another 500m of elevation gain to the summit, via the southwest ridge, with several sections of 5.7. The top part of the couloir is the steepest, at about 35°. The bottom part of the gully is choked with boulders, but we found a line which led all the way to the valley floor, for a total descent of about 1,550m (5,100'). According to my research, this is one of the longest ski descents in Auyuittuq National Park. The couloir will be in the best shape, for skiing or climbing, in April. Later in the season beware of rockfall.

Mark Synnott, AAC