<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="65001"%> OzBC.net - NSW Backcountry - Blue Lake / Twynam South

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Blue Lake - Twynam South

Blue Lake is probably better know for its winter ice climbing rather than skiing. The area is also popular amongst backcountry skiers and snowboarders. Unfortunately my experience of skiing around the Blue Lake is limited to a few turns on the way back to Charlotte Pass. I've always found the slopes in other areas on the range more attractive. That's not to say there isn't great skiing there - just that i haven't experienced it.

Similarly to Club Lake (below Carruthers peak), Blue Lake is nestled on the south side of Mt Twynam. It's steep south facing slopes collect heaps of snow and the aspect sees it last just about as long as any other snow on the range. The gullies only offer around 100-150 vertical metres of skiing but it is steep and the terrain features make it quite challenging. You can ski into Blue Lake from Mt Twynam or Little Twynam. The most friendly route is via the saddle between the two, through Centre Gully to the lake.

The western gullies (pictured below) often feature large cornices at the top and should be approached after scoping them out from afar. In 2008 a skier was killed when the cornice at the top of Glissade Gullybroke away underneath him. The cornice collapse triggered an avalanche below which engulfed the skier in nearly 5 m of snow.

The lake is frozen solid for the majority of winter.

The pictures below show a couple of the named chutes and gullies on the steep northern side of Blue Lake.

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The gnarly looking chutes and gullies on the north eastern slopes of Blue Lake

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Spring snow cover remains well into October on the protected slopes. This photo was taken on 22 October 2001.