If you live in Colorado and are a frequent powder patron you know of three places—the magical spots that always have the most snow. Like, a lot more. The blessed regions of East Vail, Wolf Creek, and Irwin. Each spot gets a couple hundred inches more then any other ski area in Colorado. We used to call East Vail the doubler. It would invariably get twice as much snow as Vail would report. Every one knows about Wolf Creek. Then there’s Irwin.
Irwin, Colorado, is located 12 miles outside of Crested Butte, which on average gets about 300 inches of snow each year. Irwin will get over 500.
It has been dumping pretty much everywhere in Colorado this past season. Even more so in Irwin. Recently I got a call from Julian Carr who, along with Rachael Burks, wanted to tap into the snowfall at Irwin.
We spent two clear days immediately following a six day storm that dropped 65 inches of powder. The first day we hit the trail on snowmobiles hours before sunrise with sub zero temps. The second day we started even earlier, rolling up in the snowcat here to the 12,000 foot ridgeline. We shot a classic Julian Carr lawn dart scene and spent the rest of the time reveling in that cold, smokey Irwin snow. —Jeff Cricco