Thursday, January 19, 2012

Day 51 I just love rolling openings

Yes, today we had our third consecutive day of deep untracked powder due to the rolling openings of the hill that today saw the whole of the Snake Ridge area and the Saddles opened for the first time since the latest huge dump. A word of appreciation must be given to all of the hill staff for getting the whole of the hill with the exception of Polar Peak (to be fair this is still work in progress) open only two days after one of the biggest snow dumps to hit us in recent year - fantastic work guys.

The day was not as cold as yesterday with temps showing -14 on the way to the hill and the same number on the way home, not full on frost bite conditions like yesterday but cold enough to make you careful. The boards showed another 6 cms in the last 24 hours but with the base dropping by 10 cms from 230 to 220. This makes sense as the snow came down so light it was bound to settle and this was confirmed by the feel of the skiing which was in much heavier snow than the past two days but still super light in comparison with the higher moisture snow that we usually get.

Things didn't start well as having got confirmation that Snake ridge hadn't opened we headed off to hit the runs on the New Side that were on my to do list from yesterday. As we loaded we were told that Snake had opened so we planned to hit Easter and then get to Bear as quick as possible. We dropped from Timber top to White Pass bottom via Lift Line wich was quite tracked up but at any other time would be described as great powder. When we arrived at the Reverse Traverse there was a sign saying it was closed due to an unexploded bomb so we hit Currie Glades (actually still quite deep) and then headed across on the Bear connector.

Although we got to the top of Bear later than we would have wanted it didn't really matter. The hike out across Cedar to Snake was slow on the cold snow (bring back the meat hook) so not too many people had gone out and those that had seemed to have dropped Snake Ridge. The first run down Steep and Deep was totally awesome with over a metre of snow mostly untracked to rip, actually if you took the bottom face left and the left gully exit it was totally untracked and in the gully itself chest deep.

We spent the rest of the morning looping out to Snake and every thing was deep and awesome, Steep and Deep, Redtree, and all those areas were fantastic. Deepest snow was on the Gorby bowl shoulder with a left cut into Steep and Deep which because of the steep pitch gets left alone and the only danger was being taken out by your own slough. Fish bowl deserves a special mention as it was even deeper than usual as you would expect out for of bounds skiing and we got suckered into taking a turn too many and had to cut a trail out in waist deep snow.

Lost count of the number of loops we did but each time came back through Kangaroo which is still skiing like a dream if a little twiggy in the top. For the first time is year we hit the trees skiers right of Haul Back and had some really steep and deep tree skiing. Also each return to Bear was through Boomerang and more than once we remarked that on any other day we would have called the conditions in Boom awesome whilst today we just thought they were ok.

After a late lunch we went to the New Side for a short afternoon having heard that the Saddles were open. A quick check in Corner Pocket showed that it had been scraped down to the tires in a morning ( this side slipping is getting worse) so we figured Low Saddle was better bet. In the end we had a pretty sctratchy experience getting through the ice and rocks in the top of Low but the chutes to the right were awesome and untracked and Easter was still good tracked powder.

Cougar Glades looked to be mostly skied out at the top but once in the trees on the left still had some deep untracked snow. Anaconda Glades was the only part of the hill on my to do list that I actually got to and I am glad I did. Usual turning points in the chutes could be ignored and it was more or less fall line skiing with a few turns and over the head face shots in deep powder all the way down.

Last run of the day was of course Skydive which although a bit tracked up is still deep and well worth a rip. Even the bottom section is becoming ok with the previously unskied right hand side providing some deep splashes off big terrain rollers.

Another great day with beers and then a hot tub and more beer at home. Tomorrow I really must get onto those things to do.

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