All Done - Location
We returned from New Zealand just in time for me to catch a few runs on closing day. From the look of the snow it must have continued to be a pretty good season and closing day even brought plenty of deep legitimate powder. However there was also an abundance of deep crud and pretty much the whole panoply of snow flavours to challenge out of shape legs.
Now, having just been swimming in the ocean a few days ago, I am quite ready for a lovely spring to burst on the scene. :-)
I was struggling to keep up with Wade the Wind today, so I didn’t find any time to take pictures, not that they would have revealed much in the heavy snow that was falling. That snow has already made the skiing rather more than pleasant and things were steadily improving.
To be sure, it wasn’t yet enough to eliminate the large, hard. slick backed moguls that had built up in some places, but it certainly helped cushion the blows. On lee slopes that had been sheltered from the sun and benefitted from the continuing strong winds, the conditions were decidedly sweet. Easter was particularly notable in this regard, with only vague hints of the hardness lurking beneath.
A lot more snow is supposed to arrive tonight and tomorrow, which is undoubtedly a down payment for the huge dumps scheduled, now that our departure from this hemisphere is imminent. I won’t be charging for this service, but spare me a thought as you wallow. :-)
Looking across Bow at Arrow and Sunnyside - Location
I ventured out today for another, of what has been for me, a series of decent, but not outstanding days. The family day traffic left almost nothing untouched and moguls were abundant, even in places that don’t normally harbour them. A few well travelled areas were on the slick side, although the great majority of slopes I passed over edged well and finding a bit of soft snow was still quite easy.
It was also sunny and if you can’t have fresh powder, well good visibility is nice too. I had also abandoned my solitary ways and was skiing with a very nice couple to whom I was giving a bit of a tour and this proved to be a pretty effective antidote for the ho hum attitude I have had about skiing recently. I might have to amend my hermit ways - well perhaps a tiny bit. :-)
At 18:00 the darkening sky seems to have become overcast and the temperature here at the house is 1 C. The deck snow has been pretty constant recently and is currently 72 cm.
Polar Peak from the 1,2,3s - Location
It certainly wasn’t a powder day and there were some bits of boiler plate here and there, but there was also a considerable amount of sift, warm temperatures and even some sun. It all added up to some reasonably decent skiing, although nothing memorable.
The windy season has continued, so it is fortunate that the shady slopes also tend to be the lee slopes. In many places you could link sift turns together for a nice ride, but always with some variability mixed in. Most of the groomed runs I encountered were quick, but edged well.
At quarter to five this afternoon it is 2.6 C and a bit windy at the house under a partially cloudy sky. The deck snow continues at about 70 cm.
Mammoth Head from the top of Morning Glory - Location
With some new snow in the driveway, I decided to head out today for an increasingly rare ski outing. These will soon diminish to zero, as we are heading off to New Zealand before the end of the month, and won’t be back until the end of the season.
It was still pretty warm this morning, so I wasn’t sure how good the snow would be, but it turned out to be rather nice, with perhaps ten centimetres of creamy dense, but not sticky, new snow. This was particularly good on North facing or shadowed slopes, for while the new snow was still very nice on the others, crunchiness could be felt underneath, along with the odd scraped off spot.
Near the bottom the packed snow often had that glazed and grooved characteristic that seems to be just itching to grab an errant edge. This was more evident on cat tracks than on the main runs though.
All in all, a pretty nice day that even featured occasional glimpses of the sun.
At 15:40 it partially overcast and 2.8 C at the house and there is about 72 cm of snow on the deck.
Today’s snow menu included soft pack, firm pack, wind pack and the occasional dash of sift. All in all it was quite decent skiing, but for me at least, a bit short of inspiring.
It was warm out, but grey and occasionally quite windy up top. At the house it is a melty 3.4 C and the deck snow has retreated to about 75 cm.
On the North Boundary Rope - Location
It wasn’t the ideal day for my late day schedule, for the eager beavers had been hard at work chewing up the deep and delicious power by the time I arrived. The skiing was still very, very good, but the odd untouched spot hinted at what had been. Fortunately this was something that could be solved with a little sweat to get off the beaten path.
There the snow was sufficiently deep that it was all but impossible to make smooth enough turns to avoid face shots and was of such hero quality, it could almost convince me that I knew what I was doing. It was just plain tremendous.
Upper Lizard and Cedar bowls were closed above Tower Six Road and Alpine Way respectively, but everything else, except the Saddles, seemed to be open. As the picture shows, that included Snake Ridge, if you were willing to climb.
Coming up on 17:00, it is -1.8 C at the house and mainly overcast, with 84 cm on the deck.
The deck snow grew 18 cm overnight to 88 cm. It is still snowing lightly at -1.8 C this morning.
There is a thin, soggy layer of gruel in the driveway this morning, with a temperature of -0.1 C and 70 cm on the deck. It is snowing lightly.
Cedar Ridge - Location
I missed the Return of the Snow yesterday due to a prior commitment, so it was a bit discouraging walking up to the hill in the rain today. However as in many things Fernie, looks can be deceiving.
It was snowing down to below the Bear’s Den and from there up the skiing was quite delightful, at least according to my tastes. To be sure, the snow was heavy, but in a smooth heavy cream kind of way that made for nice, high confidence turns. Even down in the rain zone, the snow was quite decent, with no icy bits and little of that heavy wet suction that leads to impromptu tip inspections.
Despite the moderately heavy snowfall, everything seemed to stay open except the Cedar High Traverse beyond Cruiser and the upper Saddles. Even Polar was open, although the fog and wind didn’t make it look inviting enough to tempt me.
It was wet though at anything but the highest elevations and frequent goggle wiping was an ongoing activity. I will need to make a little offering to Saint Gore tonight, for his benevolent offerings that allow one to remain comfortable, even on humidity challenged days like today.
At 16:30 it is 1.3 degree at the house and raining. The snow on the deck is hanging in at 69 cm, but looking rain pillowed.