Stephen Koch

The Official Website of Pioneering Snowboard Mountaineer and Keynote Speaker Stephen Koch

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Enclosure hike on Grand Teton

September 25th, 2012 · No Comments · Jackson Hole, Training

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Shattered – Story of a Mountain Rescue

September 8th, 2010 · 10 Comments · Ice Climbing, Videos

I was climbing on the Valhalla Traverse on the Enclosure/Grand Teton when my climbing partner, Michelle Smith, slipped and fell on the challenging terrain. After tumbling 30 feet down the mountain, the rope came taut and she stopped. It was then that she looked down at her misshapen leg and realized the severity of the [...]

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June 8th, 2010 · 3 Comments · Gear Reviews, Snowboarding, climbing tips

Steve Romeo, skier and blogger of, posed  a question about skis vs. snowboard – which is a better mountain descent tool here.   There are many excellent comments, so check out the link above for those! Following are my responses from that discussion. Randosteve:  I think it might be a little easier for snowboarders [...]

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Got Wind?

June 5th, 2010 · 1 Comment · Jackson Hole

This is a short video of my partner hiking up from the lower saddle towards the Black Dike on the Grand Teton last week. We started out in the rain and knew the forecast was for storms but went for it anyway knowing we would turn around if conditions warranted it. The gusts were in [...]

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A Few Of My Favorite Things

October 16th, 2009 · 1 Comment · Jackson Hole

I love this time of year for several reasons…the quality of light, the colder temperatures – which transform water in wonderful ways, the stillness during a snowstorm, the animals descending from the high country – gracing the valley and the hotter hot springs. Recommend on Facebook Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this [...]

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New Route on North Face of Grand Teton in Winter

March 28th, 2009 · No Comments · Climbs

On February 6, 2007, Hans Johnstone and I completed a new route on the north face of the Grand Teton, Squeeze Box (IV M7, A0, 1,000′). The line lies between Shea’s Chute and the Alex Lowe Memorial Route and ascends a weakness up a beautiful granite buttress. I had spotted the line during a flurry [...]

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Grand Traverse – First Winter Ascent

February 18th, 2009 · Comments Off · Climbs, Entertainment, Jackson Hole, Training

Stephen Koch This was first published in Alpinist Magazine in June, 2004. On January 17 at 4:45 a.m. Mark Newcomb and I began the Grand Traverse, a route that comprises ten peaks (in order: Teewinot, Owen, Grand Teton, Middle Teton, South Teton, Ice Cream Cone, Spalding, Gilkey’s Tower, Cloudveil Dome and Nez Perce) in Grand [...]

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A few words about my friend Mark “Newc” Newcomb and the Black Ice Couloir

December 6th, 2008 · 1 Comment · Jackson Hole, Snowboarding

Mark Newcomb and I skied and snowboarded much of the Black Ice Couloir on the Grand Teton in the middle 1990′s. We used a rope to belay the first 200′ because it felt like the right thing to do. I think Mark would have preferred to not have used the rope but acquiesced because I [...]

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