Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Day 69 tougher but the end is in sight

Yes, today was tougher due to the cooling conditions but a pecip cycle is on the way which should give us some powder by the end of the week.

For a change it was a bluebird day so there was no temperature inversion and temps at the base to start were -12 with temps of about -14 on top. During the day they rose to -2 at the base (warmer in the direct sunlight) and around -7 on top. The result of these fairly standard gradients was that the snow froze even harder than before, not slick ice but very hard snow with unforgiving tufts of what had previously been soft snow.

We went to the Old Side and just like yesterday started with a couple of drops down the Sunny Side shoulder which is now hard packed bumps but taking a nice edge. Next it was out to the nearside of the Fish bowl which still had some untracked lines but they are getting more difficult to find.

After that we spent the morning looping off the Boom Chair in Boomerang, Linda's, Cedar Ridge (several times) Buck Shot all of which were tough chunky partially tracked snow. The returns were always through Kangaroo (four times) which is now very hard and icey top to bottom.

Last loop of the morning was down Boom to Bear and then out to Steep and Deep which was hard chunky tracked snow and some avi debris in the bottom of Gorby bowl that needed a bit of avoiding. Hard work but fun, then lunch.

In the afternoon we went to the New Side and found much the same thing. The top of Polar Peak was in clear bluebird skys but having been up there as much as we have and seen the views the icey and rocky ways down didn't seem all that attractive so we decided to pass. We just looped out on the Reverse Traverse -
Cougar Glades - really hard chunky refrozen crud most of the way down, a bit of a mistake.
1-2-3s - tougher than yesterday but still ok skiing.
Easter Bowl - probably the best skiing on the hill although the soft snow in the top wasn't as soft as it was yesterday and the bumps, which were also a bit harder, started rather higher up in the bowl than they had done yesterday.
Decline - quite tracked up and as a result some hard packed powder bumps all the way down which skied surprisingly well.
Michy Chutes - still ok but getting a bit scratchy in the rock band.

And of course a final run out to Skydive where the upper section seemed to be skiing a bit worse than yesterday with the now usual chunky snow but the lower section skiing much better so it was a more consistant experience. The precip cycle is due to start on Friday and we do really need some more snow to refresh the hill although with the base we have skiing is ok. If groomers is your thing (it certainly isn't mine) you could be having a great time.

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