Friday, March 14, 2014

Day 15 an awesome view from the Peak

I have said it before that the view from Polar Peak is the best 360 degree view of mountains lift accessible in the world. I acknowledge that there are better views (but they are not 360 degrees) and that there are better 360 degree views ( but you have to climb to get them) but when it comes to sliding off the lift and looking all around Polar Peak just can't be beaten - today was one of those days.
An apology is due to all followers who have been waiting for tonight's delayed report - I have been to the Pub with buddies. A further apology may be due as following the pub tonight's blog may not be the most coherent.
We went to the hill today in temps of +3 at the base and about -2 on top. Conditions were broken cloud which cleared as the day went on to perfect bluebird. Temps rose so that on the way home tonight temps were +7 and got to plus temps in the direct sunlight all the way up the hill even to Polar Peak. As usual on the slopes exposed to direct sunlight the snow quickly softened but where it faced even a little away from the sun it remained hard and when the sun went off surfaces towards the end of the day they stiffened up pretty quick.
I went to the Old Side to check thing s out and just like the last few days I found all the good off piste closed for (very good) safety reasons but good grooming across Lizard and Cedar bowls. I was told that later Snake Ridge opened with some good skiing on the sun softened snow but I didn't see it for myself. I had a kind of feeling that Polar Peak would be opening so I headed to the New Side. After the usual icy bump drop through Puff Trees ( well who wants to take an easy line) I took White Pass Chair and seeing that Polar Peak was open headed up there.
The view from the top was just stunning (see previous remarks) and I hung around just to enjoy the view. Polar Coaster was all that was open but that early it was ugly and icy with death cookies and a big (6ft) drop on to the cat track half way down if you got it wrong which I did first time round. The Polar Chutes were closed, I guess because they were pretty hard and icy skiing. We looped three times and then took a high speed run to base via groomed Currie Powder and Diamond Back.
Next time it was up Polar Peak for four more loops off the Coaster which was becoming softer. Last time round they opened the Reverse Traverse and I had an awesome untracked rip down Concussion which only got heavy towards the very bottom - lunch.
Afternoon all gets a bit confusing. I remember trying to take the Reverse Traverse to Skydive and finding that I couldn't because of a sign line and having a run down Currie Creek that was as ugly as a bears ass. I also remember a couple of runs to base through Tom's Run including the run off the hill which were great soft spring skiing.
We also found ourselves on Polar Peak in between these runs. A couple of times we cut hard left from the cat rack and got into the lower part of Grand Papa Bear which was very hard and icy. A couple more times after they had dropped the fence on Shale Slope we cut hard left and got into the top of Grand Papa Bear and then left again into lower Papa Pear. The surface was super hard and although not difficult if you knew what you were doing you could see why Patrol had kept the chutes shut.
Huge amounts of beer were drunk - end of story.

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