K2 Chile trip report by JT Holmes

K2 Chile trip report by JT Holmes


K2 Chile trip report by JT Holmes


JT Holmes

What a lucky monkey I am to get to go to Chile to ski and shoot for K2’s catalog.  For a week, we stayed in this old building/ house/ former restaurant that was built in 1951.  It is the oldest building in Farrelllones, which is the center village amidst the 3 ski resorts near Santiago.  It is the building behind me in the portrait taken from the T Bar lit.  The building is a bit run down, but it is the coolest, coziest pad in the area.  It is called Tupungato.  The house has lots of history and really cool old school ski posters and stuff on the walls.  We played backgammon for money every night and enjoy the smog sets from the window and our deck. In the mornings, we rise, ski from the house take some photographs, hike, wait around for something or another ski some more and then ski on back to the house.  It was great to live the simple life for a while, and get in the winter groove, even if just for a week.

As for the skiing, the region is a bit low on snow this year, but we consistently found good snow on the Santa Teresita road lap.  This is a real gem.  In between Valle Nevado and El Colorado is a lift accessed ridge that is “closed”. If you ignore the signs and drop in you can ski about 1900 vertical feet down to the road.  From there, you hitchhike or have a ride pick you up and take you back to either ski resort.  Santa Teresita had consistent offerings.  When it snowed 2cm at the house, it would blow in to magic carpet status over there.  Things were really bony for taking any airs, but you could at least ski fast at the top, and find a fun straightline out the bottom to get the heart pumping a bit. A tthe bottom, I ran into these Brasilians that were experiencing their first ever encounter with snow.  They were fascinated by my gear.  I let them try on my goggles, and try sliding around with the skis and poles.  They could not believe all the stuff and were very reluctant to stop playing with it once my ride arrived.  They were adults, but were fascinated like little kids.

Sunset in Chile
Check out the photos i snapped during the week.  The crash sequence I have to credit to my man Claudio who was a huge help tot he K2 crew and is a low key mountain badass and great photographer.  He snapped the sequence as photographer Alex Obrien narrowly dodged getting pumbled by him as he spontaneously detonated mid turn due to his binding releasing for no particular reason whatsoever.

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