Saturday, February 04, 2006

First tracks heaven

After Thursday's negative gap between expectation and reality, today the reality exceeded the expectation. The snow was about what I expected from this morning's report - ten inches in the past 24 hours - I just didn't expect to get so much of it before the crowds arrived.

Once again my lovely wife dropped me at the Thunderhead Express so I could avoid the line at the Gondola. I started with a quick run down Rudi's and Blizzard and then waited for the Four Points Chair to open. From there it was first tracks once again on Tornado and then over to the Pony Express and another wait. In the meantime the Gondola opened late, so the normal hordes had not yet arrived.

On Pioneer Ridge I got first tracks on Middle Rib/Outlaw/Lariet and then a fresh line on the skiers' left of Diamond Hitch and also through the trees of Nash Junction.

After that I decided to take the Storm Peak Express and Morningside Chair to the peak, but couldn't resist the fresh lines still available on Alarm Clock, even though the bottom part of Morningside Park is annoyingly flat when the snow is deep. From there is was Chute 1 (if you want steep the chutes are the place to go on this mountain) and Big Meadow, through the aspens to the skiers' right of Buddy's above the Bar-UE Chair and then down Drop Out where the bumps were nice and soft.

From the top of the Storm Peak Express again I realised I hadn't skied Closet since very early in the season, so I headed down there, although I ended up veering across to Shadows followed by Lights Out (as I've said before, this combo is definitely my favourite run).

Since it is forecast to snow again tonight, I fully intended to avoid last week's mistake of skiing too hard on Saturday and not having much in the tank for another powder day on Sunday, so I jumped on the Elkhead Chair to head home. However the powder lines between the trees on the skier's left of Sunnyside were calling to me and I answered. Then it was home via Tower, the gentle bumps of Norther and Vagabond to the 11.32 am Green Line bus.

I had a couple of face plants today. It's tricky when there are deep drifts of heavy snow hidden beneath fresh, light snow. When you hit that your skis tend to stop and thanks to Newton's first law your body tends to keep going. It doesn't hurt anything other than the ego to fall in all that powder although it can be tough to stand up.

Here is today's map. Note that I have decided from now on to show first tracks in magnificent magenta rather than yellow.

The Morningside map is missing because Blogger's image upload is not currently working properly. I'll try to add it later.

Update: I've got the image upload working again so here is the Morningside map. Also, to update my 2005-06 season count, this is day 36 and powder day 15.

1 comment:

david said...

dan -

i'm afraid fly fishing is permanent; hooked for life, as they say.

but, snowboarding will always be my first love (though just barely). i'm heading up this weekend with jamie, though i'm not sure which day. we found a couple new stashes last week that i'll gladly show you.

care to join us?