Telluride’s Revelation Bowl


The snow was coming down hard, even by San Juan standards in Telluride’s Revelation Bowl. Although it was getting late in the day, my wife, Jesse, and I had a few more laps in our legs. We had been hearing bombs going off over the Gold Hill Ridge for at least a couple hours and we were hopeful that the outstanding Telluride ski patrol was having some success on the north side in an amazing terrain feature known as Revelation Bowl. As we skied up to load the Gold Hill chair for one last lap, I overheard the lift-ops radio as the ski patrol announced, “We are going to open Revelation Bowl!” Jesse and I looked at each other with knowing smiles and up we went.

At the top we skated cross the ridge to the newly dropped rope and let gravity do the rest. The snow was deep and untracked down the skier’s left, a zone known as Liberty Bell. We avoided a couple of avalanche bomb holes near the ridge, a good indication of how deep things were. As it was late in the day, aside from a few locals who know the drill and timed it right, we almost had the bowl to ourselves. For us, it was pure luck ─ but they do say you make your own luck in the mountains!

We managed to sneak in two more laps on the Revelation chair before closing time. With each ride up we could admire our tracks and enjoy the hoots and hollers of others sharing the same joy. Jesse and I took a moment to appreciate the incredible view from the 12,500 foot top terminal of the chair. Looking down into the intense terrain of Bear Creek and the incredible couloirs of the Little Wasatch zone across the valley was the perfect ending to a day of storm skiing at Telluride. And we still had that final cruiser run back to town.

 

Two-time World Champion skier Chris Davenport is one of the worlds’ premier big mountain skiers. Among his many ski mountaineering achievements, in 2007 Chris became the first person to ski all fifty-four of Colorado’s 14ers in less than one year. With numerous first descents of peaks around the globe under his belt, he knows his runs.