One of the “50 classics”, this line sees a lot of traffic, and can have good skiing, but the skiing can also be pretty ugly. Park at the Ryan Gulch trailhead where a skin track will follow the trail up to the first junction. This junction is where the return skin track rejoins the main trail, so remember it for later. From here you head left/uphill for a while before the skin track will cut left off the summer trail and head up a 100 year slide path. This is where you’ll really start to gain vert. From here you continue up to timberline and then up one more steep stretch before it flattens out around 12,200 feet. Traverse more or less due west until you crest the final ridge and the Silver is laid out beneath you.
You can usually ski from the summit if you’d like, but the top few hundred vert is very mellow and can be wind scoured. Around 12,000 is where the line starts to get interesting with big rock walls on your right and the chute starting to narrow from a snowfield into a real couloir. The next 1500 vert is the prime attraction, a big wall looms on your right, with a consistant pitch in the upper 20s to low 30s, and with pretty awesome views down valley and across towards the flank of Red Peak. Below this the chute opens out into an apron at which point you’ll want to head right and try and catch the aquaduct to begin your traverse out. This is where the real fun begins! A sidehill/uphill traverse for a half hour to rejoin your ascent path (this is where I get grumpy). You’ll want to throw your skins on for this puppy. One word of advice … don’t follow the aquaduct too long unless you like an aimlessly meandering trail through the woods ultimately ending miles from the trailhead.
Over 3000 vert the snow quality and quantity can vary a lot. We’ve started with light windbuffed powder on top and ended up with runneled mank at the bottom on more than one occasion. I’d recommend hitting this earlier in the spring, rather than later.