Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Day 21 and a day of not very good guesses

Today dawned clear with temps at a cool -12 and these actually fell during the day to about -16 by evening. When we hadn't heard any bombing by 7:30 it was easy to figure what was going to happen. When we got to the hill our suspicions were confirmed and the helicopter was up and they were heli bombing all the ridge lines from one end of the hill to the other.

This was good news in that it meant that everything was clear to be opened subject to a bit of extra work as most of the ridge lines had fractured for most of their length. It was bad news in that everywhere was covered with avi debris in fact a long term local told me in the bar in the evening that this was the most avi debris he had seen in the bowls ever.

We hung out on the new side to await the opening of Currie that didn't happen during the morning. All that did happen was that White Pass chair broke down for another 30 mins ( they had better sort this problem before the holidays start) and we skied ever more difficult conditions as the powder firmed up in the cold and the base became hard and quite slick. Loops through Surprise, I bowl, Highline etc were all ok but no more than that.

At lunch we discovered that the old side had opened up a bit and Cedar bowl had been pretty good so we had been in the wrong place all morning. After lunch we headed up the Old Side only to see that Snake Ridge was not open despite what we had been told but there was a sign saying that Currie was open so we headed back to the New Side. Dropped down Arrow expecting it to be a quick groomed way back only to find it was avi debris all the way down to China Wall - that's one amazing slide.

By the time we got back to the New Side there was only time for two loops. In the first we tried 1-2-3's and found loads of avi debris, so much so that we skied about half the time on powder and the other half on 2 week old rain crust which is how far down the avi had slid to.

Final run was out to to Skydive along the County Line. All the way across we saw how the hill had slid pretty well all the way. Doesn't look like the skiing out that way will be much fun until the next fall of snow with the possible exceptions of Currie Creek and Cornice chute where the snow looked like it might have held. Skydive was good at the top but the rain crust started to form about half way down and the lower third was just ugly hard work but the pow at the top made it just about worthwhile.

Looks like more of the same for the next few days.

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