Skiing Millvue Peak from Lambs Canyon
Updated: Feb 27, 2020
Base Elevation: 6,100
Summit Elevation: 8,926
Total Ascent: 2,859
Crew: Butter and I
Date: Feb 25, 2020
I love summiting peaks in the winter because it is a win-win. You get to bag a peak plus you get an epic ski run (usually). Last year I skinned up this route but when our group got up to the Mill Creek/Lambs Canyon ridge, we took a right (northwest) but the obvious route and skin track went left towards Millvue Peak so naturally I had to go back to explore the skiing from the summit of Millvue.
The frustrating part of this tour is the 1.6 miles along Lambs Canyon Road which takes about 45 minutes. It isn't hard but it feels like a waste of time especially since you can snowmobile up this road to the turn off. The turn off to Lambs Canyon Trial is well marked and their is an outhouse across from the trail.
This trial is very easy to follow as there is a well trafficked skin track that takes you to the Mill Creek ridge which is 2.3 miles from the turn off. It took me 2 hours to go the 3.9 miles from the trailhead to the ridge. The nice thing about this section is that it is well shaded due to the tight canyon and it is not that steep or technical. Once you get to ridge, your perspective opens up with views of Mt. Aire, Gobbler and Raymond. From the ridge junction, it is .7 miles to the summit which is just past the cell towers. The approach to the summit can be quite tricky and technical but with the summit in reach, you forge through it. As always, there is a false summit but don't fret- the actual summit is just beyond the cell towers.
The descent down from this point was actually much better than I was expecting. It snowed about 3" the day before but prior to that, it had been dry for about a week. It was not knee deep plower powder but the snow was still light with a fresh coat of paint. There were a few tracks from the top but I was able to pick my line and I got fresh tracks most of the way down.
The total descent from the summit to the trailhead 2,700 feet but only about 1,200-1,500 of that is actually skiable because you eventually end up in a gully and then you have to traverse and bushwhack back to the original skin track that you came up. And then you have to ski back down the 1.6m on the road which is easy but zero fun.
I debate if this tour is worth the effort because it is eight miles round trip and takes about 4 hours for a relatively short ski vert and annoying bushwhacking on the exit. If you could skip the 1.6m on Lambs Canyon Road (or take your sled), then I would give this route the thumbs up. Of course I am excited that I did it because any personal first ascent is rewarding but I don't think I will be rushing back here on the next powder day.