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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« Whistler Weekend | Main | Big Fun »

Powder Spectacular

Short story: one of the best, if not The best day of the year. Twelve to 18 inches of untracked new covered the mountain, and last week's powder hordes were not to be seen. The Gondola started loading at 8:40 – the line was gone by 8:45. Mumbling our powder plan on the Gondy ride up, we tried to keep the expected stashes to ourselves. Not to fear as our Gondy buddies were from Alaska and didn't have a clue what we were talking about. We then gave them some pointers on where to go – in general, still keeping the details to ourselves.

Clear blue ring around CrystalWithout the frenzied crowd, we calmly moved south to north on the Frontside trying to gobble all the knee-deep snow before Chair 6 opened. We hadn't yet finished the job when it opened. Knowing 6 had been closed yesterday, we raced to keep ahead of the expected crowd. No crowd. We cycled through our numbered chutes, .5, 1.9, .1, and at most, had to move 10 feet left or right to get a clean line. Finally hitting the eastern edge, with Southback closed, we started moving north. CD launched a new line in Powder Bowl Left (usually rocky) and Bear Pits Right that were killer. That gave us the momentum to jump all the way to Northway, bypassing mountain central, aka Green Valley. 

CD Preps by not lookingHorse Shoe Cliffs and into Sphincter Falls was effortless even as the sphincters tightened the line to just ski-length width. Puckers was next on the list as deep and smooth rolled over into steep and deeper. In the ensuing blur of deep pow, a couple Brand Xs, Northway Chutes, Nose Trees – we continued on our roll of deep untracked. Looked like Dick and Terri were doing the same on Penny Dawgs as we rode the chair over them multiple times as they exited the trees. CD looked at Dead Teddy from the chair and couldn't look away. The left entry was 25 feet of air off the overhanging cornice, and with our balls sucked up, we took the right entry. For us still a wild ride.

GoingEmployee Housing, our first tracked run of the day, had lots of pillows that needed exploding and trees hiding pockets of fluff. Sometime during our Northway fest, they'd opened Southback. The King looked like it had a crewcut of people standing on top as we uploaded for one last Powder Bowl – later heard The King and Silver Basin were good.

CD and I each gave it a thumbs up (so that's 2) as the best Northway day of the year and possibly our top day of the year. 

I'll be on a hiatus from the blog for a week as we head to Whistler. Maybe some posts from Canada if we have good WiFi. There's still lots of good snow up at Crystal; go tear it up.


Video Dead Teddy Chute

Dead Teddy 3-21-12 from Ken Zeman on Vimeo.


A little snow tonight and heading towards some possible clearing for friday. Light snow arrives during the weekend and into next week.

Reader Comments (2)

Definitely one of my top ten days of the season. I will try to hold my end of the powder while you are in Whistler. Keep your eye on CD he tends to crowd in the lift line.

By the way I sent another reminder to xtal that we would like to have tweet when south opens
March 21, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdick
Hey Dick, I resemble that remark!
March 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCD
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