Monday, March 31, 2014

Day 33 an apology

So, to whom am I apologising ? Well, the answer is my buddies in the mines who are just starting a four day set and my buddies who are weekend warriors (yes I do actually have loads of them) because as they always complain I do tend to give some very favourable ski reports on the very days that they have to work and today is no exception in a rather big way.
It was -6 on the way to this hill this morning and the snow report gave 14 cms of fresh which seems about right and because of the cold temps it was distributed fairly evenly over the whole hill and the base up at 414 cms. During the morning we had flurries which kept things cold in quite socked in conditions. In the afternoon things brightened up a bit so we had clear conditions all the way to the top of Polar Peak and temps rising to +3 by the time we drove away from the hill. This meant that we had great winter powder snow for the first part of the day becoming softer spring snow in the lower sections by the end.
Due to old age and incompetence I had left my seasons pass on a jacket I wasn't using today so I had to get a temporary pass from guest services. If anyone from the hill is reading this I would offer some constructive criticism in saying that you have a problem. There was only one guy in guest services and although he was doing a great job to work through the line up he was just one guy - it took me 20 minutes to get a replacement pass which only took about 2 minutes once I was actually served. This would not be a problem were it not for the fact that while I was waiting there were three staff on the snow school counter doing nothing except chatting and drinking coffee - they didn't have a single customer in the time I was waiting. It should not be beyond the wit of man to devise a system whereby surplus staff in one section can move to another section to help out when there is a big line up - if the problem is technical then I suggest sacking whoever designed to software for the desk terminals.
Eventually we went to the New Side and found everything open except the Saddles and Polar Peak. We did think about the Old Side and I am told by buddies that Snake Ridge and Steep and Deep were very good but I can't confirm. We had some great loops through White Pass finding soft untracked snow almost everywhere and not much by way of crowds to trash the powder. Lynda suggested Skydive and we went and found great soft powder down to the final pitch and then breakable crust under the new snow for the final few turns which were a bit challenging.
Next time round Lynda went to Easter which was super soft in the top. I went to  Lone Fir exactly 2 weeks after I was avied out there and found almost identical conditions except that the fan held firm and I had awesome untracked lines all the way down into lower Easter bowl. We got to the top of White Pass and were tipped off by patroller buddies that Polar Peak and the Saddles were about to open.
I went to Polar load and after a few minutes wait I got the first chair up to ski Polar Chutes which had been closed for 5 days. I had the most awesome untracked run down Grand Papa Bear in deep powder which was about a half dozen GS turns from top to bottom - the run of the season so far by a big margin. I looped Polar through Barely Legal which still had loads of untracked deep snow and next loop ran off Polar in Mama Bear which was big blasted in the top but had great soft snow down to the Reverse Traverse. I ran to base through Corner Pocket which was full of snow and skied like dream Under the chute there had been a lot of avi control work but it was possible to find untracked deep powder down into lower Easter bowl which was still skiing soft and deep.
Next it was up Polar peak for two loops through Papa Bear. The trick with Papa Bear is to drop skiers right of the chute as for some reason this is less skied and the snow is deeper because it is in the lee of the ridge line and gets more windsift. The run to lunch was through High Saddle which was just like Corner Pocket, great snow undisturbed for three days with untracked lines between the avi trails.
After lunch we were back up Polar for a couple of Papa Bear loops although things were getting tracked up there was still plenty of soft snow. We ran to base through High Saddle which still had loads of untracked deep powder. We then had another couple of Polar loops before taking Mama Bear which was still surprisingly untracked. The run to base was a hike up to Lone Fir which still had plenty of snow in it but more importantly the soft snow in the fan below remained super deep.
We found ourselves with time for a White Pass loop and took an undemanding Gun bowl/High Line run and were amazed by just how much deep and untracked powder there was to be had in these pretty central and pretty easy runs.
Final rip of course was Skydive which skied as very mellow soft powder for about 80% of the run and ugly hard ice bumps for the rest - ah well, everything has to be paid for. Great beers with good buddies in the Griz. Possible more precip in the forecast but probably some spring skiing by the end of the week.
On the way back from the hill I dropped in to the Mountain Pantry to pick up a couple of bottles of wine. Having picked up the wine I eventually raised a member of staff from out the back who said they were closed. Apparently I should have realised this from the fact that the open sign above the door was switched off. Here's a reality check guys, I could have walked out with all the booze I wanted if I had been that way inclined so perhaps when you close a store it might be a good idea to lock the door. Secondly you are supposed to be a convenience store and there is nothing very convenient about closing at 6. If you are a C store and want to get away with charging premium prices the quid pro quo is that you are open all hours. I won't be going there again and bought my wine much cheaper at the ever reliable Pub liquor store.

No comments:

Post a Comment