Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day 71 and the cost of skiing drops below 12 bucks a day

Yes, today is the day when the average cost of a day's skiing (assuming that you bought a pass in the Early Bird sale) drops to below 12 bucks a day which seems to me to be a reasonable price to pay, but watch this space as an average of near 7 bucks a day may be achieved by the end of the season.

With the hill it was same old, same old. Although there seemed to be a dusting of new snow making things look a lot fresher and prettier the official report was no new snow, the base is down to 256 cms, the skiing is tracked up hard pack and bumps, hardly anyone on the hill and for a change we had a low cloud base that socked in just above Bear top on the Old Side.

Temps were around -6 at the base and bit cooler up on top to start with. By the end of the day the base had warmed to -2 and on top it remained a few degrees cooler. The effect was that the snow on the hill stayed in pretty good and unchanged condition all day.

We went to the Old Side for our traditional two drops down Sunny Side shoulder which like every other day was firm bumps taking a nice edge. Again we headed out across Cedar Bowl and tried Steep and Deep which was ok with hard pack in the top, quite soft stuff in the middle and some tricky avi debris on the ski out.

We were so encouraged we tried two further loops out in Redtree which was just like Steep and Deep and Gorby bowl which was soft all the way down but a bit technical in the left/right shuffle through the rock band and again tricky in the avi debris on the ski out.

After that it was just loops off Boomerang in Boomerang itself, Cedar ridge (a couple of ways) and Linda's all of which were starting to get a bit tracked up and bumpy in places but with the bumps firm and taking an edge it was fun skiing. Of course this all led to 5 returns through Kangaroo which had not changed and was hard icey bumps but perhaps a little easier to ski due to the skier traffic.

After a late lunch we headed to the New Side and found that the cloud base was just above Timber top which of course meant it was about half way up White Pass. We did think about Polar Peak but it was so socked in at then top of White Pass we could hardly see the Peak chair when we skied under it let alone at the top and we were getting freezing drizzle fogging the goggles at that stage. There was no reason to suppose that the Polar chutes would be anything other than the icey bumps of yesterday so in the prevailing conditions we decided to give them a miss.

We looped -
Decline - nice soft bumps all the way down
Easter Bowl - probably the best snow on the hill and only one track in front of us going in even at 2 in the afternoon. Soft smooth bumps.
Stag Leap - a bit chunky on top and scratchy down below, not the best run on the hill.
Concussion - refrozen crud in the top but quickly becoming nice smooth hard bumps all the way down through the gully.
Skydive - final run and a great run it was. Bumpy in the entry but nice soft if chunky snow in the middle and the bottom has now had enough traffic to make it good challenging hard pack skiing.

Still no significant snow in the forecast so we could be in for more of the same thing. Due to pick up my Irish buddies from Calgary so it could turn out to be a half day report tomorrow depending on their flight punctuality.

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