Saturday, December 20, 2014

Day 16 an awesome day

Yes, it has taken 16 days and we now have our first officially declared (declared by me) awesome day's skiing and it has been a long time coming. As I said last night it was raining in the valley and puking snow up top as I left the hill. Well, the rain in the valley stopped but the snow on top continued well into the night.

We woke this morning to find 12 cms of fresh on top of all that we had already had. On the way to the hill it was about -1 and on top about -3. Things may have warmed a bit during the day but cooled down so that the temp gauge on the truck was showing -1 as I put it in the garage. Conditions were great powder on top but rather sketchy down below where the rain had been last night. During the day it was overcast and pretty socked in at the top of White Pass and we had quite strong flurries adding maybe another 5 cms to the snow during the day. The base was reported at 105 cms.

Sorry if this is just becoming a bit of a New Side report but we went up to White Pass and the basis that it wold be a good day to get up high and we were dead right. Puff was fully open and great powder on broken terrain as the only good way to get from Timber Top to White Pass base all day. White Pass was open but Currie bowl and Anaconda remained closed.

We had a great time looping the Gun Bowl (deep but poor viz) Pillow Talk (lots of good lines to take and logs to jump off) and Highline (nice soft snow). I kept looping out to Surprise Trees hoping to find Anaconda open but without luck although Surprise was now filled in and deep and skiing very mellow on my DPS Wailers which I was giving only their second outing of the season. By late morning we had tracked most of White Pass which was still filling in as pretty good powder but then we took a short break.

When we got back the fence on Currie had just dropped and I headed out to Skydive. There were three tracks in front of me and all three headed on round to Easter so I had first tracks into Skydive and Decline. A terrible decision as to which one to ski (I wanted to ski both) but in the event I took Skydive down to the Megasaurus Trail and it was just awesome deep untracked snow. Even the exit was ok.

After that, discovering that the closed signs in the big three had been turned round ( whether by patrol or not I don't know) I ripped Decline top to bottom. In the lower section there was only one track in front of me and he stayed left so I skied right. Fantastic deep powder with some twigs. Last loop before a very late lunch was Cougar Glades which had a few tracks but as anyone knows in Cougar Glades you can always find untracked lines and I certainly did. All the way down to the lower cat track in untracked powder before bailing to the right for the final section.

After lunch I was back up the New Side and went out looking for stuff. The sidestep up to Lone Fir was open so I took it only to discover that the chutes were closed and I had to drop back down onto the traverse which was pretty tight skiing between the trees - I guess this was just Patrol's little joke.
I cut into Stag Leap which had a few tracks in but was great free riding in deep snow on some very lively terrain. The final pitch was very twiggy but as we were getting pretty confident at bushwhacking we just smashed through.

After such a late lunch I was running out of time and decided to try Anaconda Glades. Very often when the Glades open at the same time as Currie they get neglected and today was no exception. The first chute over the hump was deep soft snow and we just ripped it all the way to the bottom. Last run was Skydive and we took it all the way down. The top two sections were great deep snow but the bottom section was a little twiggy. The good news was that the twigs were soft and easy to smash through.

So there you have it a full on powder day when you could ski all of the big three and Cougar Glades top to bottom in some great but testing conditions. No wonder we drank so much in the bar tonight. The outlook is for more snow so fingers crossed.

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