Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Day 97 a great way to say goodbye

Well, of course I'm not saying goodbye for good. Tomorrow I am heading back to the UK for 7 days to sort out some family stuff, coming back next Wednesday, I'm sorry to say that whilst I am away I haven't been able to get Lynda to do the blog so I'm afraid there will be no reports for the next 8 days - sorry.

Today was a pretty stunning way to finish, Overnight they were reporting 34 cms of new snow in the last 24 hours of which about 20 came yesterday during the day and the rest came overnight. Temps had dropped to -4 overnight so we had snow all the way down to the base and during the day whilst base temps may have risen a bit above freezing it was still a solid -4 at the top of the hill all day. the snow base rose to 336 cms.

Mountain conditions ranged from socked in cloud to bluebird sun and back again with each run different and later in the day we got flurries which turned to snow and even now are heavy snow in temps of -3. Polar Peak didn't open but looks awesome for tomorrow which as I won't be here does not fill me with very warm feelings. As I sit here snow is piling up on the deck and we seem to be back in a totally unforecast winter storm cycle.

We went to the New Side on the basis that the high snow from yesterday would be best up there. It was fantastic as even with Currie closed we were able to cycle White Pass. First time through Knot chtes everyone was ignoring Tight Knot and we didn't so we got great deep untracked powder all the way down to the Idiot Traverse. Next two times Slim and Jim provided great deep powder with just a few tracks. Each of the three times we completed the loops through Surprise Trees which have so much terrain that we were able to find totally untracked lines every time.

Next time up White Pass chair they dropped the fence on Currie bowl as we arrived at the top (couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of guys) and that set the scene for the rest of the morning -
Skydive - hit out as quick as we could and found just one track (I guess patrol) on the left hand side. We had the right and centre untracked top to bottom and it was awesome. Top two thirds were bottomless and the lower third good powder on a firm base.
Stag Leap - rather more tracks than I expected but still fresh lines to be found and, as the new snow had a high moisture content and as a result a hero quality, you could more or less straight line the top sections.
Cougar Glades - tracked in the top but as usual as you got through the top it opened out into a load of untracked tree skiing. Great over the head face shots all the way down.
The Brain - as usual there were a few tracks but with so many options you could always find untracked lines. Took the tight Decline side exit at the base which was good but a little crunchy in the bottom section.
Decline/Window Chutes - Ok in Decline and fantastic powder in the chutes themselves. Even the exit was soft powder.
Secret Chutes/Spinal tap - tracked by now but very good soft snow all the way down particularly jumping from the creek bed to the right shoulder and back again.

A late lunch followed by a short afternoon.

We went back into the Knot chutes and found Tight Knot re filled in from the morning and awesome skiing ( having to avoid your own slough).In Anaconda we went as far right as ever I can remember and got deep untracked snow in tight trees all the way down to the top of Bootleg. Just like yesterday we went beyound Bootleg to the further trees and found great untracked skiing all the way through - life is so easy in these trees that you never normally ski when there is this much snow.

Next was Lone Fir which was a bit tracked in the chute but great underneath. Because Lizard bowl was closed there was a sign line just to our left as we exited the chute. This was excellent news as everyone sking Easter had stayed right and there wasn't the usual tracks coming in from the left because of the Lizard closure - result deep untracked snow all the way down the left shoulder to the top of Freeway.

A quick time filler in White Pass via Knot chutes (Jim) and Surprise Trees ( still plenty of untracked lines) and it was time for the final rip down Skydive. It wasn't as good as first tracks in the morning but still pretty good as by this time it had started to snow again quite hard and we had a few cms of good fill in. A great end to a great day.

The forecast is for a massive warm up although it looks as if I will miss a great day tomorrow. I'll be back in a weeks time.

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