Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Day 68 a New Side day

So, today is the last time I shall have to be apologising for a late report as this evening I picked Lynda up from Cranbrook Airport and now she is back it will be business as usual for the rest of the season.

No new snow again overnight and on the way to the hill this morning the temps were -5. It was hazy sunshine all day and the temps rose steadily at the base so that it got to about +4 by the mid afternoon high. Up the mountain things were cooler with temps holding on to zero or a couple of degrees cooler in the shade although in the direct sunlight things were warmer. On the New Side at least it never got warm enough for things to soften and just as in the previous days things were firm but with some sift up high and breakable rain crust below that all the way to the base. Tonight on the deck it is -5 so it looks like a chilly night

For no particular reason we went to the New Side and stayed there all day. Polar Peak was open so after a quick warm up loop in White Pass we went up and set the pattern for the day. That pattern was to loop Polar several times taking different lines and then run to base to complete the loop. Papa Bear was firm on top but with increasing wind sift lower down as the day went on. Grand Papa Bear was a mixture of ugly lunar landscape wind crust with the odd patch of firm wind grooming, the trick was to hop from one patch of hard pack to the next without getting too hung up on the ugly crust in between. It was challenging fun and there was an interesting variation by hitting Shale Slope for the first few turns then crossing over the shoulder by tower 8 and dropping into the Grand Papa chute that way. Mama Bear was also very smooth and firm and very mellow skiing but as always on Polar your first mistake was likely to be your last.

The runs to base were through Concussion twice which was nicely broken up crust, Lone Fir which was nice in the chute, a bit scratchy in the fan and ugly icy crust on the Easter exit, Barracuda which was like Concussion but not so broken up and Touque Chutes which skied surprising well and soft in the top but just got  crustier as you went down.

Final run of the day of course was Skydive which was rain crust all the way although it did seem to ski a little easier than the past couple of days particularly in the top of the final pitch. Sooner or later it's either got to get warmer and the crust will soften or we will have new snow, or someone other than me and a couple of buddies will ski it and break it up but until then we are stuck with an end of day crust event for the foreseeable future.

No drinks as I had an airport run to make but from now on as I said normal service will be resumed.

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