Friday, December 24, 2010

Day 20 the story so far

So sitting here on Christmas eve with old black and white movies on TCM and a beer in hand after a great hot tub and a good days skiing it's a good time to review the season so far. My cold abated enough today to go back on the hill but energy levels were way down and all the front runs had to be skied in two or three stages.

Today was about -12 on the way to the hill getting up to about -5 and overcast withy no new snow. The pre Christmas traffic has been more than usual this year because of the way the holidays fall and most of the hill is hard pack (what the publicity guys call packed powder) and forming into bumps. Where the traffic has been a bit higher the bumps can be quite icey but in most places they are taking an edge if a bit slick in the troughs.

Because of low energy levels I decided to have technical day concentrating on edge and balance and holding back on speed - it almost worked. We went to the Old side and worked our way across Lizard Bowl then into Cedar getting out as far as Steep and Deep. Three return trips through Kangaroo confirmed it was getting bumpier and icier. Best soft snow seemed to be anywhere off Cedar Ridge and the toughest bumps outside of Kangaroo was good old icey Boom Ridge. We had a fairly late lunch.

In the afternoon we went to the New side and just looped out along the County Line dropping Concussion, Decline and Stag Leap all of which had a bit more soft snow than the old side but nothing to get too excited about. Being strapped for time we put a couple of loops in of White Pass (Gun bowl/Highline Trees and Surprise Trees) before finishing off with the usual run down Skydive - a bit slower than usual due to fatigue levels, can't wait to get shot of this cold.

The season so far can be summed up as ok but let's not get carried away. We had all the hype about a La Nina winter but if we hadn't had one big dump pre season things would have been pretty scratchy. We did get the dump and the first 10 days were pretty awesome with good powder on 8 days. Then came the pineapple express with two of the worst days of rain I can remember. It then slid in many places and what was left became fairly icey but a good base, about 126 cms. Since then we have had a couple of weeks of no real snow, what has come down has been super light and dry so no real soft cover has formed on the base. With the high skier traffic the hill is in ok shape but no better and more snow is needed. Storms seems to be slipping by us to the south and we need a change in the jet stream if things are going to get better.

So there you have it. Looking forward to a short day tomorrow followed by too much to eat and drink. Merry Christmas

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