Saturday, March 28, 2009

28th March

And what an excellent day, day 96 turned out to be. We had 10 cms of fresh if a bit heavy snow overnight which raised the base to about 240 cms which despite the bad year is only about 60 cms below average due to this late fall of snow. Best news is that there is a heavey snowfall warning for the Elk Valley and most sources are calling for at least 20 cms overnight.
With a forecast for light snow all day we headed to the hill and found sun with a bit of cloud. For the first time in several days it was the sun which was doing the damage so south facing slopes started to soften while the north facing stayed in pretty good shape.
Learning from yesterday we went straight to the new side and found - no one !! I have never skied a powder Saturday with so few people on the hill. The reasons for this are open to debate, the None Stop ski programme are down in Whitefish and a lot of activity was concentrated around the kids racing on the old side but in part the reason must revolve around the fact that Fernie is charging high season prices for tickets when every other hill is discounting ticket prices like mad to get customers in - but what do I know.
Not only were there very few people on the hill but they seemed only to want to ski in the rather uninteresting groomed areas leaving the rest of the hill to us. As a result without really trying Lynda and I put first tracks under the lift in Whitepass then on to Anaconda where Lynda got first tracks right and me in the next chute. Next we went to Siberia ridge where we found all other tracks turning off down Mitchy chutes leaving us Sib ridge untracked. The steep gnarly section in the middle was as always steep and gnarly but nothing that couldn't be handled with half a dozen good edge to edge jumps - after that I took left, Lynda right and it was untracked all the way down.
Skydive was good and we were about third track in. Next we grabbed first tracks in Secret chutes and as always a quick trip into Spinal Tap was well worth while even though a couple of boards had been in before and we had to ski their sloughs in the lower seactions. somewhere along the line we got into 123s and Diamond back which again were good although the latter having been groomed you had to work the right hand side to stay in the powder. A final run down Decline again proved good untracked snow although at the bottom it was already starting to get rubbery.
After an excellent lunch in the excellent Corner Pocket I went back to the new side and had the inspiration to try the Brain top to bottom which got very technical in the tight trees. Cougar Glades was the only mistake of the day as it was very mushy from half way down. I tend to forget how south facing the glades are and with the amount of trees removed there is quite a bit of direct sunlight to cause damage. Final runs down Stag leap then Skydive just showed that there was still tons of fresh snow to be had but a bit heavy lower down.
Snowing on deck now with temps dropping so a beer, hot tub and early night look like the best ways to prepare for tomorrows snow.

No comments:

Post a Comment