Sunday, January 16, 2011

Day 43 Now that's what I call a real mess

First of all an update on yesterday which I missed posting last night due to a massive evenings drinking session with some welsh sailing buddies who are out here at the moment - sorry for the lapse.

Friday as you may recall was a soggy mess top to bottom so as it rained all night we had very low expectations going to the hill. As it turns out we were wrong the hill had improved out of all proportion and all reasonable expectation. With a slight cool down the base up in White pass had firmed up without becoming hard and there was a thick covering of grappel which gave sort of hero snow conditions.

Taking a tip from a patrol buddy we traversed into Knot chutes which were just perfect. I bowl and the chutes out towards Surprise were equally good with just a bit of breakable crust in the lower section. Just before lunch they opened Currie bowl and 1-2-3s was good all the way down to the lower sections of 3s where the soft grappel became crust. Just after lunch 1s avied due to skier activity and there was a cat 2 slide with 7 skiers wiped out but no full burials and after a quick trip to the hospital confirmation of no serious injuries. Bit of a result and a good reminder that this play ground of ours can kill if you don't show it the respect it deserves.

With the New side shut down for rescue we went to the Old side and had a great afternoon on the Boom practicing soft wet bump sking - also had a wet run through Kangaroo. The evening was spent drinking far too much beer with buddies.

Overnight it rained again with the rain turning to very wet snow by morning. The hill claimed about 16 cms of fresh and perhaps unsurprisingly the whole New side was shut down for avi control and stayed shut down all day. We went hoping for some ok conditions but this time we were wrong again and this time the wrong way.

The only bit of the hill that was open was the old triangle which had about 10 cms of heavy snow on it and then a covering of rain from about half way down. The result was ok ish fresh at the top and pure elephant snot everywhere else. It was raining almost to the top of Bear and it was clear this was going to be short day.

We skied Bear, Boom and Boom ridge which were deep heavy chop and could only be skied by edge to edge jumping - a real work out. By late morning we were very wet and the only half decent skiing was on the left of Bear which was starting to form into the familiar soft Bear bumps. Fall line bump skiing is only fun for so long in those conditions so by lunch it was all over and we headed off the hill. In the Griz bar there was a surprisingly large number of the usual suspects taking an early finish so a few beers were had.

Tomorrow I head to Calgary to pick up a buddy from the airport who is coming out for a week or so. Fingers crossed for better conditions which from the forecast still seems like being a day or two away.

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