Stoked to share a trip report from American Avalanche Institute Instructor and Bozeman splitboard guide Clark Corey. Clark is one of the most prolific splitboarders in the Northern Rockies and has explored all over Idaho and Montana on a Jones Solution. Here’s a report from an adventurous line he found last season in the Spanish Peaks of Montana:

South face of Beehive Peak

Story and Photos by Clark Corey

Some lines draw your attention because they are plum, clean, obvious and meant to be. Others perk your interest because of the mystery, because they do not go clean and you wonder how it would go down and in some cases how you would get off. These are fun because it involves creativity, a sense of adventure, and sometimes a sense of humor. The South face of Beehive Peak in Montana would be one of those lines.

Last season, long time ski-partner Drew Pogge and myself got to explore one line which we’d wondered about for several years on Beehive. The South face is really just a hanging ribbon of snow which skirts a 600 foot sheer rock face before abruptly ending in outer space. Not a whole lot of room for riding, but plenty of room for imagination and “what if’s?”. On some years the line isn’t filled in at all, and other years only for a short period of time.

On numerous occasions while riding various lines off and around Beehive we’d looked up and wondered; always trying to imagine how it would feel and where you would exit. Then one day I was talking with ski legend Tom Youngst about Beehive (who had pioneered other lines on the peak) and he mentioned the line. He too, had wondered about it, and always “imagined what it would be like”, but had never gotten around to it in his hay day. Although he didn’t have an intentions of skiing it now, he was clearly still excited about it and his enthusiasm was infectious. Drew and I started calling it “Tom’s face”. If nothing else, we had to ride it now so that we could tell Tom what it was like!

The climb up the backside is a fun adventure in and of itself. The route weaves around various snow plastered rockbands, past gendarmes and than ends in a short 5th class move and airy ridge to the summit.

We made calculated turns riding the upper snowfield. Snow was sun softened, smooth and creamy. Photo (above/below) by Drew Pogge.

We anticipated that finding the anchor would be the trickiest part, as the rest was pretty straight forward: climb the peak, drop into the snowfield that dead ends in a huge cliff. After all, it was fairly committing as you had to ride down right to the very bottom of the snowfield, and there were some unknowns about the anchor. However, we knew the rock on Beehive peak’s south face is good quality, with lots of featured cracks and blocks so we knew there had to be something solid. Via recon pictures and on the approach, we had identified a nice spot to pull up and assess how to get off, and when Drew skied up he quickly saw a perfect rock horn. One sling and 100 feet of rappelling later we were safety standing in the top of the Forth of July couloir. For once in life, things couldn’t have worked out any better.

After we were down in the basin we did laugh looking back up because there wasn’t a ton of riding off the top, and it almost seemed silly for all the effort and to risk falling off the south face just for a short amount of turns. However, this wasn’t about attaining maximum vertical for the effort, or picking the line with the best fall line riding. It was more about the overall adventure – summiting a cool peak, making turns in a wild place, piecing it all together and figuring it all out.

Share Story
Published on
7 April 2015
28
Apr
Videos
Board Hoarders - Part 2: Jeremy Jones’ Surf Series Quiver
Video By Greg Weaver. Photos by Andrew Miller. The new BOARD HOARDERS video series features Jones’ ambassadors digging into their personal snowboard collections and sharing stories about their favorite boards. In part 2 of BOARD HOARDERS,...
Jones
22
Apr
Fighting Climate Change Through Reforestation With ACCT
Since 2015, Jones Snowboards has donated a portion of our annual 1% For The Planet donation to the Costa Rican non-profit Association Community Carbon Trees (ACCT). ACCT is a rainforest reforestation organization that fights climate change by...
Jones
7
Apr
THE BIG ONE - Full Movie + Photo Gallery
In May 2019, pro surfer Ian Walsh and a talented crew of shredders including Nick Russell, Forrest Shearer, Danny Davis, Harry Kearney, Jerry Mark, Nathaniel Murphy, Clark Henarie and Eric Roepke made the push into Denali basecamp. They had...
Jones
30
Mar
Videos
Waking Dream With Pica Herry - FULL MOVIE
In the search for riding esthetic lines in the Mont Blanc Massif few can touch the legacy of snowboarder Julien ’Pica’ Herry and freeskier Sam Favret. Invade Media’s 2017 film WAKING DREAM follows these two legendary shred alpinist as they question...
Jones
21
Mar
END OF THE CYCLE: Forrest Shearer scores DEEP POW in Utah
January 2020 was a legendary month in Utah as a two week storm cycle dumped over 100 inches in the Wasatch. Forrest Shearer rallied back to his old stomping grounds to catch an epic powder filled 48 hours of shredding and splitboarding at the...
Jones
4
Mar
Adventure Boardin’ With Joe Lax
Story by Joe Lax. Last season we had one of the longest winter dry spells I’ve ever seen in the Coast Range of British Columbia. The overall low precipitation, coupled with harsh arctic winds and extended high pressure really beat up the high...
Jones