The King and Queen of Corbet’s are INSANE!!!
People always ask me what’s my favorite ski resort. It’s Jackson Hole, Wyo.. I love our Utah resorts but seriously, nothing compares to that cowboy mountain. I made the pilgrimage to Jackson Hole this March. I use my PSIA instructors’ Steeps Camp as my motivation but I don’t really need it. My roadtrips to Jackson are something I look forward to annually; and every year as I drive toward that monumental resort in the Tetons my heart races and I wonder what the snow will be like, whether I’m in shape and would Corbet’s be an option.
Corbet’s Couloir looked gnarly on this trip. In other words, not doable. The rumors swirled of this crazy competition a few weeks prior where men and women hucked themselves into this infamous couloir. These athletes had decimated the run, leaving nothing skiable for us amateurs; that was just fine by me.
February 1, 2018. Nearly 25 hardcore skiers and snowboarders (seven were women) amassed beneath Jackson Hole’s aerial tram for the start of an incredulous comp. They would be launching off a massive cornice into Corbet’s Couloir- a legendary shot most riders avoid. But these competitors wouldn’t ski it like most experts or even like most Freeride World Tour skiers. Each athlete had two runs to throw down for a winner-takes-all format for cash and crown. It was go big or go home time.
I’ll admit that I peek over the edge of Corbet’s on every trip; usually I spout some excuse like, “If we had better light,” or “the snow is hardpack” and then shimmy away. There are few days (and times in that day) when Corbet’s is perfect. But it does happen….and then I give it a shot. But to allow for optimal conditions for the first ever King and Queen of Corbet’s, Jackson wasn’t taking any chances. They cordoned off the chute for three days and prayed for snow. Only eight inches fell during that time and the wind buffed it to a stiff bouncy crud. Still, men and women backed up some 20 feet, then straight-ran off the lip.
Karl Fostvedt and 23-year old Caite Zeliff walked with $8k each and bragging rights for years.
P.S. To all of you men who might want to judge the difference between the men and the women- You try it then talk. The fact that there are women ready to charge off that top is HUGE regardless of tricks and style points. They hauled ass all the way to the bottom carrying as much speed as any of the competitors. Frankly, I’m surprised and stoked there were ladies stepping up to compete at all. I’ve skied into Corbet’s three times in my life and there’s no way I would and no way I would hit it like these brave babes.