Check here for personal reports of snow and weather conditions at Crystal Mountain each day I ski along with thoughts and ramblings about the day’s adventures.
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I ski for smiles, not numbers,
but here they are anyway


Days - 35

Vertical -955,282

Smiles - 571

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Ready, Set, Wait

Been going through the pre-season ski checklist.The Gang carbs up for the upcoming season

Summer toys put away, check
Skis tuned, check
Ski clothes unpacked, check
Snow tires mounted, check
Ski dinner with the amigos, check
Go to the ski show, check
House chores complete, check
New website built, check
Watch ski movies, scheduled
Snow..... Dang


After a few weeks of lamenting the end of sun, wind, sailing, and the beach life, it’s now down to waiting out the cold-and-damp-but-not-quite-cold-and-damp-enough season. 

We used the “in-between time” for house chores as we settled back into Seattle after moving back from The Gorge. That kept us busy for a while, but now, with the dark evenings and cold mornings, my brain shifts to thoughts of smooth white after putting the wrap on wind and waves.

Talking with the ski amigos started the juices flowing when we met for our annual dinner and ski show get-together. The ski brain fired right up after its summer sleep. However, animated talk of past ski adventures and upcoming plans hit the abrupt reality of No Snow Yet.

We reconvened at the Seattle Ski Show amongst the best hype the ski industry can provide. It was deserted. Talking to Someone at the Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol ski swap, I found out it had been quite busy in the afternoon, and they’d sold a lot of equipment. Good for them. With the lack of evening consumers, it was easy for the Amigos to make our way through the show. Bend some skis. Watch friends pick out a coat for kids among some truly outlandish colors and “fashion”. Look at all the ski area booths where every day is a sunny powder day. Bend some skis. Check out the new Subaru turbo motors. Laugh at the silliness of some ultra wide skis, one-condition wonders. Get some free Cliff bars. Bend some more skis. After years of getting free show tickets, this might be the last time. I don’t know if I’d be able to justify the 12$ a person entry fee if I have to pay next year.

It was a great evening with friends; can’t wait to get back on the mountain with them. There have been a couple teaser dustings at Crystal, visible on the new top-of-the-Gondola cam. The only snow that stuck around is the man-made snow from the new snow-making guns on the top of Green Valley. The snow making should help keep the edge of the ridge from wearing down to the rocks. My p-tex will appreciate that. Crystal hopes to open with less snow this year, as the plan is to open Green Valley with the Gondola before the lower mountain is skiable.

Watching ski movies this weekend and hoping we don’t have long to wait. This weekend’s storm might start covering the mountain.....

In the meantime, I’m posting a video summary of last season. It’s long and bandwidth gobbling, but what else do you have to do?


10-11 La Nina Recap from Ken Zeman on Vimeo.



Reader Comments (2)

great job on the stoke, just 15 minutes after watching your recap of last year. Crystal's web site announced maybe we will be skiing after wed.
November 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDick
Crystal announced they plan to open Green Valley via the Gondola on Friday. Big wet storm forecast wednesday night, snow level 5K, then continued lighter snow and cold starting mid thursday.
November 15, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKkz

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