Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Day 62 not a bad day considering the conditions

The heading says it all, with no real overnight snow nothing much changed with the conditions, but we had a just about acceptable day skiing on ungroomed surfaces. A bit of wind sift had move some of the snow into the dips between the ice bumps but it was not great deep snow and in fact was rather slabby. We spent the day poking around looking for some good stuff but in truth the conditions were only a little better than dust on crust and very tough skiing - none the less we seemed to manage to enjoy ourselves and have fun in the tricky conditions.

It was about -5 on the way to the hill and warmed up a bit during the day so that we just about had plus temps at the base. White Pass load showed a high of -2 and Polar load (Polar Peak wasn't open but we skied by it on the way to Currie Glades several times) showed about -5. Conditions were overcast with a couple of very light flurries which we hope will be forerunners of a pretty major precip event that is on it's way, but more of that later.

We went to the Old Side determined to ski off groomers most of the day and after a quick rip down Bear we managed to achieve that. New Lift Line was hard and bumpy with a bit of dust on top but mostly ice. Cedar Ridge looked like it should be smooth soft snow but this was quite deceptive. What we actually had was slabby blow in which gave a smooth surface but you were so quickly through to the rough ice base it was a challenge. Linda's was very similar to Cedar Ridge but did ski a bit better in the lower section where there were smooth bumps.

We did two runs down Boomerang. The first was through the guts and very hard icy bumps but with some soft snow in the final gully which skied ok. Next time I pushed skiers right into the trees and found much more deep snow sifted in and had some great soft snow untracked turns (probably the best skiing on the hill today) all the way down to the Goat Trail. So late morning we headed for the New Side and stayed there for the rest of the day.

All drops from Timber to White Pass was via Puff which skied ok to begin with but by the end of the day was getting very scratchy and icy bump skiing. We alternated runs to base with runs back to the White Pass load. The White Pass loops were always Gun Bowl (soft tracked snow on an ice base) and Highline (a rather higher ice to soft snow ratio than Gun Bowl) but just about ok.

We did about 6 runs to base through Currie Bowl alternating Currie Glades and 1-2-3s but always exiting on the Gilmar Trail which was skiing ok to begin with but getting decidedly slick by the end of the day. Currie Glades was like yesterday with tracked up soft snow on a hard ice base - challenging but enjoyable skiing. 1-2-3s was very variable with about every permutation of conditions in one or other of the chutes. They ranged from ice bumps, through untracked powder on crunchy ice, to soft snow avi debris which actually skied best of all.

Still no chance off getting out to Skydive as the traverse remained closed. Knot chutes did open but the conditions looked just plain ugly and we didn't feel tempted. The forecast is for snow which should help. Actually the forecast is for a lot of precip over the next few days with it's form depending on the temps. Detailed forecasts vary and we could get anything from a snow bomb to rain and everything in between. My best guess is that we will get a day of snow, a day when we get rain at the base and snow on top and a day of rain top to bottom, but lets hope I am wrong. Watch this space.

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