I was thinking about hiking up to the Independence Bowl in Keystone tomorrow for some SC and I have a question about making it back down the mountain from the bowl. Is there anyway of getting back to Dercum mountain without having to hike all the way back up? From the trail map it looks like the bottom of the Independence bowl area is right over the tubing hill and top of Spring Dipper but there is a small corner or out of bounds area you need to cross. Does any one know if this area is roped off or if travel through the area is possible?
Here's a trail map so you can see what I am talking about: http://www.keystoneresort.com/~/medi...ap2011map.ashx
From what I remember it should just plop you right back out in the outback.
I think you are thinking of the North and South bowls. They have the $5 cat rides to take you up there then you can hike a bit from there and it all gets you down to the lifts eventually. The Independence bowl is on top of the 'front' mountain and it is only accessible via hike or a $250 cat tour. I think Keystone added it to their resort a year or two ago. It sounds like there should be plenty of good snow there but once you ski down there is no lift to get back up. Instead of hiking the 700 vertical feet back up, I wonder if there is a way to continue skiing down to rejoin the trails.
Its a bit of a PITA to get there so I figured limited people = better snow. Plus it's one of the few places in Keystone that I haven't been. There are a few videos of people riding Independence on youtube and it looks pretty sweet.
The bowls aren't that good since Sunday, at least the ones I've been to (Copper, Key, Breck). Went last Friday and Saturday and it was still fine. Must have got rained out Saturday evening coz by Sunday there was a good layer of crusty snow/ice mix.