Saturday, February 19, 2011

Day 77 An ugly busy day but a short one

Today was always going to be one of the busiest days of the year being the Saturday of Alberta family weekend. Add to that the reports of awesome fresh snow over the past 7 days and the forecast of bluebird conditions and a daytime high of a mild -2 and the inevitable consequence was more people on the hill than I have seen at any time this year and that includes the Christmas break.

On the plus side the starting temps were -20 which kept a lot of people off the hill early and I had to go to Calgary to pick up my Irish sailing buddies from the airport so I was only going to be able to ski until about 11:30. By the time we left the hill the crowds at the Bear chair were ugly and I wasn't that unhappy to be leaving.

The reason the Bear was so busy was that it accessed the only significant untracked powder on the hill. As I hinted at in yesterday's report there was only one place to go. Of course I didn't say where it was but anyone with half a brain cell could work out that Snake Ridge and beyond from the top hadn't been touched for two days and would be totally awesome - it was.

With the limited time available we only manage two trips out before Bear became impossible. First time we hit Steep and Deep, Lynda from the Redtree side and me from the steep Gorby bowl shoulder. Both were thigh deep and totally awesome. Next time round I went into the Poppa chutes in Fish bowl using the Redtree cut out and Lynda took Redtree along the fence, again totally awesome.

After that it was just a few return loops through Kangaroo, Boomerang, Boom ridge, Cedar ridge, all of which were ok skiing and would have been described as something much better if it hadn't been for the incredible skiing we have had over the past few days and this morning.

Crowds were so ugly that I was actually pleased to be heading home by noon in order to drive off to Calgary. Forecast is changing and the base which is now down to 292 cms should be up above 300 sometime next week.

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