An extreme mountain crack falling from the peak of Silver Mountain


Analysing terrain data









The exposure grade does not take into account objective hazards (stone fall, seracs, etc) but only the consequences of the skier falling.

Low Exposure (E1): Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.

Medium Exposure (E2): As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.

High Exposure (E3): In case of a fall, death is highly likely.

Extreme Exposure (E4): In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.

In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.


The Wire, as the name suggests, is a skinny fall line chute that plummets off the top of Silver Mountain's near vertical North West face.

It is a popular summer climbing route but in winter it is rarely rideable.

During a big winter it is possible for the gods of high mountaineering to claim such a line but they'll need to be prepared for a rappel section and near death experience.

Access is up the Palmyra hike and then ridge-line rock climbing south to the Summit of Silver Mountain.

A longer access is across Alta Lakes Basin and up the birthday chutes or a long spine climb from where the south-west corner meets the Alta Lakes road to Ophir.

Either way this is a full on expedition style mission that requires serious thought and planning.

The Wire has a few kinks in the run with an obligatory cliff a third of the way in and rocky cliff faces either side that spit you into the powder bowl fields of the Basin above an old mining trestle.

Most will prefer to hike up the wire from the bottom when conditions allow, to drop a line where it feels most comfortable.

There are a number of good turns to be had right and left of The Wire's exit point when the snowpack is stable enough for boot packing.

The easiest egress from Alta Lakes basin is along a snowshoe / snowmobile trail that runs South of Bald Mountain.