I relaxed into a cold day wearing new christmas presents of warmth. And was rewarded most spectacularly.
Every day the mountain is changing - must be its job. Amid reports of The Valley skiing great yesterday, the gang dropped off the cat track into variable weirdness. Huh? Iceberg was smoothly groomed crispness with 2” of new. It skied fine, it’s a groomer, but my freezing lips and nose sent out the please-slow-down alert through the brutal chill. I might have to re-evaluate Valley-Berger as the traditional warm up lap.
With only improvement in our sights, the call was Breakover. A resounding YEAH! usually reserved for Sunnyside rolled off everyone’s lips. The game was on. I just relaxed back and let the rest of the gang throw out ideas. Every idea was perfect and we’d lap it until it was tracked out. Did I mention last night’s refresher of snow, officially 4”, was boot to knee deep depending on where the wind blew yesterday? We had nearly a full gang of Amigos today and it still took all day to track out The Stashes. Bear Pits, Doors 1and 2 (later Door Zero) complemented my brain that was in Labrador Retreiver mode of “get the powder/stick”. It was go anywhere, go fast, and swoop back into formation at the bottom.
Cycle in the T2Bs of Employee Housing - not a track on it - and the New Exterminator “Area” for the big and deep. Crystal has really done a good job opening up some of The Terminator, and it’s really skiing well. The deepest route, however, will remain my secret for now (hint, see below). Lower E was in perfect form just as the ski legs were coming on-line for end-of-big-T2B-run strength mogul bashing.
As the day went on, the weather improved, becoming sunny around noon. That just egged us on to go faster, deeper, and faster. (He said faster twice…. ). Yes, faster, as you could really see the patches of untracked, take the sketchy line (we wore out the Showtime rollover, sorry, grass showing now), and ski it relaxed and easy till…..
We saved enough energy for a day ending Top-2-Bottom Exterminator. Still steep, still deep, still untracked. WOW!
As the gang dropped some rad lines into Eagles Drop, I was last man in skiing sweep. Just as I was turning in, just as Amigoette skied in, I caught her out of the corner of my eye high-side falling to a big plop next to a tree. She’d caught a ski in the wind packed cornice, it ejected, and she head-firsted into the deep snow. Not quite a tree well, but it was soft enough one arm was 3 feet under the snow trapped by her pole strap. Her head was not buried, but deep in the snow. Head down at a 40 degree angle, she was trapped. Luckily, she was able to move her head and breath. It took me a couple minutes just to maneuver to a stable platform where I could help her out. She might have been able to extricate herself, but it would have been a lot of work, as just moving without skis took max effort. So, 10 minutes later, skis back on, deeply buried pole found, she blasted the rest of the deep untracked. Brought some intense pain to my chest as we finished skiing the trees where a few years ago, another skier, skiing by himself, suffocated in a tree well. Keep an eye on your buds, and know where you are in case you have to call in reinforcements (ski patrol on your phone’s favorites list).
There might be a slight refreshment thursday, say 1-2”. Or, we might just continue into a warming and clearing trend that will cumulate friday. And last through the weekend. No new, warming, but not too warm, and I’ll transition to some excellent bump skiing.