Thursday, February 22, 2018

Day 83 More of the same

Although things warmed up a little it was a case today that nothing much had changed and we had another day just like the last few only with the snow conditions not quite as good as was to be expected.

The day started at -16 with no new snow reported. We had hazy sun in the morning which gave defused light so that every where that was in the shadow was very flat light indeed. In the afternoon the skies cleared a bit so it was almost bluebird as we drove away in a steady temp of -7. The outlook is for a snow cycle over the weekend and more to come next week so things are set to improve.

I was a little late getting to the hill as I had to drop off a buddy's pair of skis at Ski Base where they are looking at a warranty claim for him. When we arrived at the hill we were undecided as to which side to go to ski. The decision was made for us with the news that the Bear Chair had become the latest in a long list of lift break downs this season and would not be running until 12. This was later revised to 2 and although I didn't ski the Old Side I understand this timescale was more or less met. So the New Side it had to be.

We went up White Pass to find that the Polar Peak chair was turning but it was not loading. We killed some time doing Knot Chutes/Surprise Trees loops. The drop into the Fraid Knot was very mellow and the skiing there and in Slim and Jim were good soft wind sift. Surprise Trees also had a good covering of sift and only got a bit scratchy low down.

As it didn't look like Polar was going to open we dropped Gotta Go and had a tough time in the very flat light until we got through the choke where viz improved. The Don't Lose Me Trees to the right of Bootleg skied ok after you got through the cat debris. To kill more time we took a trip down Siberia Ridge which Lynda said was soft all the way down and I took the Fraser Tooth which was ok soft snow but with some very hard icy patches.

By now it was late morning and we found Polar Peak open for business. As before the only part open was the Coaster side so we had several loops of the Crusty Chute which was firm but with some sift and a few bumps. The runs to the chair were via the tower 6 traverse and then straight down, each time pushing a little further into the wind affected snow under the chair - well someone has to work it for the rest. Last run before lunch we pushed into the fan under Papa Bear which was very good if slightly variable. Our run to lunch was through Concussion which was great soft snow with the only problem being a number of traverse lines and then the Gilmar Gully which skied surprising well and where the light was much better than we expected.

After lunch we went back up the New side as the Bear Chair remained broken down. It was a rerun of the morning with a few Polar loops then a run to base, then repeat. The runs to base were through Decline which was still soft in places, Concussion which skied just like the morning and Stag Leap which probably had the best snow we found anywhere on the hill being soft all the way down. The drop at the bridge on the way across had deteriorated a little since yesterday but was still well on the right side of ok.

We just had time for a White Pass lap and so hit Knot Chutes again. Obviously there had been traffic during the day as the drop into Fraid Knot had developed a big kicker which was hidden in the fading light and came as a bit of a surprise. Slim was still in good shape and I rode the left shoulder of the chute followed by Surprise Trees which were still soft in many places. Final rip of course was Skydive where the club numbered 4 of  us. The general view was that it was tougher than yesterday particularly in the final pitch but rather better on top.

With a bit of luck the next snow cycle starts tomorrow afternoon and temps should be in minus single figures. That would be nice.


  1. Saturday will be a day the pay for powder gang rip the old side