Words and Photos by Derek TaylorThis is my roommate, Ruby. She has nothing to do with this story. I put her in here because she's like the Honey Badger. She doesn't give a shit!
The day started with this: A text from Keith, my former editor and current photographer, saying, “Carston is out. Got sick puke all night he said.”[sic]. ([sic], by the way, is a journalism term that says, essentially, “I know this isn’t proper English, but that’s how it was spelled, said, written, etc. In Carston’s case, it carries extra meaning). It ended with Carston (aka, Carston Oliver, the most underrated skier in Utah) getting sick in an entirely different way. In between, I had to turn down a seat with Wasatch Powderbird Guides (thanks Spencer, and seriously… if you’re calling to offer someone an empty seat on a helicopter, you probably don’t need to say: “Sorry for calling you so early.”), handled phone calls about a crew allegedly from Powder (probably true) who had allegedly crossed closed avalanche terrain (no comment…) and infringed upon Solitude’s sovereign border (…besides that it wasn’t us), and did a lot of waiting for the grey bird skies to pop blue (they never did).
Let’s rewind a little. The day actually started with Brighton’s website reporting 13 inches. We had an appointment for an early ride up the Milly Express. Carston was out for the morning (he would show up after lunch), but we had Sam Cohen in tow. We were going to Get the Shot.
Here’s a look at how the day went down for us. To read more about the radness that is Solitude and Brighton, subscribe to Powder today (it costs less than two beers at Rio Tinto Stadium).This was actually our last shot of the day, but it was also the sickest (pun intended). There was only a small landing zone before the traverse, and Carston nailed it. Sadly, this shot does not do it justice. Fortunately, Keith is a professional and uses a grown-up camera. This was our first shot of the day. I call it MTS, or Missing the Shot. "I didn't expect it to be that deep!" Keith said. "You disappeared." Apparently Carston wasn't the only one up puking all night. Skier: Sam Cohen This dude skied by as we were waiting for Keith to set up for The Shot. The snowboarder in the upper left wanted to hit this air. But Sam Cohen doesn't care. He's also like the Honey Badger. He takes what he wants. "Thanks for the treat, stupid!" Carston Oliver showing Sam Cohen the line. "Ew, he's eating larvae!" Sam Cohen gets a face full under the Milly lift Keith Gets the Shot of Sam Cohen getting the grab Half way through the day, Sam Cohen had to switch jackets with fellow First Ascent skier Lexi Dupont, who needed his puffy for a trip to Alaska. So instead of his blue puffy blending in with the blue skies (would not have been a problem today), he got this sweet shell that blends in perfectly with the surrounding rocks. I think you got the point: Carston Oliver is a sick skier, and he was up all night with food poisoning. He also wears pink pants, which look pretty sick in flat light.