Pinball Wizard Chute (and Little St. Joe), Bitterroots

Date: May 5, 2018
Trip leader: Joshua Phillips
Attendees: John Bardsley, Adam Drobish, Minot Maser

The third TRM trip on Saturday, May 5, was a backcountry ski trip over the top of Little St. Joe to the Pinball Wizard Chute. Pinball Wizard descends to Bass Creek about half-way along the ridge between Little and Big St. Joe Peaks and requires some scrappy and slow-going hiking along the ridge once past Litte St. Joe. Pinball Wizard is the second chute you see as you look down from the ridge heading west. The chute itself is a skiers dream: 4000 feet of vertical, with a consistent, but not-too-steep, pitch. It’s definitely worth the extra effort beyond Little St. Joe. We were able to ski all the way to Bass Creek, then it was 5 miles out on the Bass Creek trail to the cars, and back to Missoula for the Rocky Mountaineers annual picnic. Although it was a long, challenging day, this trip was one of the highlights of the ski year for me.

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