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Hard as Blazes and Blowing like a Mother

Today you were happy you had sharp edges first thing in the morning… or an ice axe to self arrest your slide for life. I am sure things were better with some sun but a little sketchy first chair.

Tonight temps are down and the groomers may be able to actually till some decent snow for a change. Given that, conditions will most likely be better on the Rose side. Expect much colder temps tomorrow. The silver lining… the snow will stick around a little longer this way… the bummer. It may not soften up much tomorrow like it has been.

The really bad news… Sierra Nevada monitoring stations are now reporting the lowest snow water content on record averaging just 6% of average. What this means is that the cold streams of water that usually come down off the mountains all spring and early summer will not be coming down to refill reservoirs, creeks and rivers. In fact, hydrologists are not expecting much of a shot in the arm tomorrow when the final snow survey is completed. As it stands now, the snowpack should be at its max depth and have the greatest snow water content… well the warmest winter on record took care of what meager supplies we did have in cold storage and the rest has been depleted by the March Miracle, the miracle being how warm it was this month as well as the rest of this year so far.

We are now in what experts are calling an "Exceptional Drought" and thats not "exceptional" in a good way either.

We are now in what experts are calling an “Exceptional Drought” and thats not “exceptional” in a good way either.

And what of our favorite river around these parts… well, the Truckee River has practically dried up owing to the lack of feed from its primary benefactor, Lake Tahoe. This is a shot of the Truckee from River Ranch at the turnoff to Alpine Meadows. The spot where most rafters and tubers take out on their run from the Lake. As you can see, the “spring run off” is not only negligible, it’s zero at this point.

The Truckee is dry for all intents and purposes. There will be no boating this summer on the Upper Truckee.

The Truckee is dry for all intents and purposes. There will be no boating this summer on the Upper Truckee.

Sorry the news isn’t better folks, but thats just the way it is. Hopefully we will have a better winter next year and this will all be a distant (and very dry) memory.

And I say again… come on up and enjoy the snow while its still here. Sliding around on one or two boards is always a barrel of laughs no matter the conditions!

Sven

Big Ski News

March 26, 2015

Approvals Received for Park City Capital Improvement Plan

  • Creates largest ski resort in U.S. with upgraded lifts and restaurants
  • Most impactful capital program in history of U.S. ski industry
  • Looks like Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons Resort will be connected via a gondola making it the biggest skiing in America with over 7000 acres of skiing at a mere 50 million capital improvement plan. Work will go ahead this summer on the project

Sven

Billy “the kid” Rolshoven: Slide’s Party Poster Boy

Close to another record breaking high temp day led to soft forgiving bumps and some epic tree skiing, bbq, tailgaters and all sorts of shinaghans including snowball fights, tackles, pond skimming and some cold spirits. The Slide side skied better than Rose today. Although undeniably wet, with a few obstacles raising their ugly heads, all was soft. The Rose side by contrast had dirt clod sized frozen snow making for a bumpy ride early on and some icy plates although you could certainly find good skiing on both sides once the sun warmed everything up. The Slide side had much fewer folks as most folks were thinking Slide was toast. It is definitely NOT and there is lots more good skiing to be had over there.

Billy "the kid" Rolshoven really says it best since a picture is worth a thousand words… warm weather, soft bumps and cold brew make for big Aloha Smiles after the lift stopped spinning.

Billy “the kid” Rolshoven really says it best since a picture is worth a thousand words… warm weather, soft bumps and cold brews make for one big Aloha smile after the lift stopped spinning. He is the Unofficialmtrose Party Poster Boy this weekend

There was also some fun underfoot in the lodge as Jack Sparrow made an appearance today in preparation for tomorrow’s Burner Party in the Slide side. He dropped by to show some kids just how accurate he is with his pistol (not bad, he was able to bag all three studs letting the doe go).

Jack's aim isn't bad. Luckily for Mr. Sparrow it is open season on 12 to 14 year olds (with a limit of 4)

Jack’s aim isn’t bad. Luckily for Mr. Sparrow it is open season on 12 to 14 year olds (with a legal bag limit of 4)

The Wildland Fire Fighters had a good Vertical Footage Fundraiser and everyone else was just out having fun with some snow frolic. The day ended for many of us with awesomely tired legs, wet boots and big smiles with our arms around each other. What a way to end a great day!

From Left to Right, Erich Dathe, Mike Selby, Jack Sparrow, Noa Selby, Jamie Koehler, Keegan Koehler and Kylie Koehler ham it up with Jack

From Left to Right, Erich Dathe, Mike Selby, Jack “Off” Sparrow, Noa Selby, Jamie Koehler, Keegan Koehler and Kylie Koehler ham it up

Sunday, Rose will host the Burners with lots of Fire, Wild (or no) Clothing, Music, a Trapeze and Dancing on the Slide Deck. Should be a good time!

Sven

ALOHA Brah, Newsflash: Slide will Stay Open!

If you don’t like it… don’t ski it.

Incredibly good spring conditions today and the trees and bumps proved so worthwhile out Zephyr way that I forgoed much of the other offerings, knowing that the Zephyr Run will soon (if not sooner) be closed for the season and I wanted to get my licks in. It was one of those days where each run is your “last run” but your skis just don’t turn toward the parking lot when you get down there but into the maze instead like they are under their own power. I was alone out there for the most part, which made it even sweeter. IF Zephyr is still in play tomorrow, I highly recommend it with one caveat. It is not for the faint of heart… patrol has had a lot of pressure to close it and thank goodness they haven’t caved to the whining about there being too many obstacles. Point being, if you don’t like it, then don’t ski it. Doesn’t mean it should be closed to others that do enjoy it.

Between Dave Hahl and Patrol, they have kept most of the mountain open for us and it has cost a LOT of money. Just look at one place where the snow has been stripped from a side hill to lay out on a cat track to keep us sliding around and having access to all the good corn.

If you think this is an easy process, try getting a cat sideways on a hill like this AND manage to keep pushing snow without pushing rocks (or having boulders stop you dead in your tracks) Then the snow has to be pushed a godawful long ways to cover the dirt and mud. It is a very messy business

If you think this is an easy process, try getting a cat sideways on a hill like this AND manage to keep pushing snow without pushing rocks (or having boulders stop you dead in your tracks) Then the snow has to be pushed a godawful long ways to cover the dirt and mud. It is a very messy business

Like The Chutes, it is the flats that tend to melt out first having an angle to the sun that allows it to melt mornings and afternoons leading first to grey snow, then brown snow and finally just dirt. From two reliable sources at Rose the plan, as of today, is to keep Slide open another weekend after this one. Incredible. This may prove a herculean task when one looks at the condition of the slopes today.

Mine Train is highly unlikely to make it even through this weekend much less next but other cat tracks and slopes are in bad shape too. Rose has committed to working hard to keep it open and you can expect some stripe skiing by next weekend

Mine Train is highly unlikely to make it even through this weekend much less next, but other cat tracks and slopes are in bad shape too. Rose has committed to working hard to keep it open and you can expect some stripe skiing by next weekend. They are working overtime to give us as much time on the Slide side as they can and we are honored by their commitment to us locals. Come up and ski (and/or drink) to support them!

Here at unofficial, our hats are off to the management team at Rose for rallying behind us locals in keeping  Slide open when it would be so easy to throw in the towel like so many other ski areas and write it off to a “bad season”. Instead, the resort will drop some major coin to keep Slide open for us. Nice Job Rose folks. Keep it coming!

Once off the cat tracks conditions were awesome (although again, some folks are going to whine that it was too sticky, or too soft, or too… whatever). In fact, it was great corn bumps on Zephyr and all over the mountain and tree skiing too if you could find spots that had been skied in a little bit. After four hours of bumps and trees, I was whipped and had to lick my wounds before I could even post tonight. All in all, sun, corn and empty slopes… made it a Perfect Day.

Once you arrived to the slope of choice, it was all yours baby and you had a ticket to ride. There are millions of good turns left up here. You just have to look for them! (photo: looking West up Zephyr)

Once you arrived to the slope of choice, it was all yours baby and you had a ticket to ride. There are millions of good turns left up here. You just have to look for them! (photo: looking West up Zephyr)

In short, the Fat Lady is not singing just yet and together, Patrol and the groomers have been keeping everything open they possibly can, so… instead of bitching and asking them to close runs because you don’t like them, just go the bar, order a tall cold one and talk story about the run you just “survived” at Mt. Rose. Oh yeah and don’t forget to thank them. They work hard and deserve it. Looks like Alpine will be down for the count on April 5th, followed by Squaw on April 12th. Rose could end up being the last man standing… wouldn’t that be a kick!

This weekend will be a great time to get some of your last turns in on the Slide side, have a tailgater, tip back some cold ones and bring out the Aloha wear from the closets. Its rockin up here. Rockin spring corn and there is enough for everyone till your legs are jellified.

Sven

PS   Don’t forget to wax up red and iron it in or you will sorely regret it frozen in your superman form in your double ejection pose

Bobo’s Demo Days… the K2 booth

K2 Crew is pretty stoked with their new offerings…. and I can ski why.

The K2 Crew is pretty stoked with their new offerings…. and so was I after demoing a few pair

Last Sunday we all had a wonderful opportunity to try out the 2016 offerings for next season and all the big boys were there showing off their new technology. As I floated and tried out a few new skis they all seemed to provide a good ride and take a little getting used to. It was frozen vegetables in the trees that morning so I would try the trees, look for icy plates on the groomers to make them chatter and then cruise up to speed and see how they did. As it softened, the bumps came into play as well. By the time all was said and done, I was most struck by K2’s innovative NANOlite technology which reduces swing weight substantially (taking a lesson from Rossignol, Soul and Sin 7) by applying NASA tech to ski manufacturing. The tips and tails are thinner, but reinforced with light but strong alloy and wood while the center of the ski is channeled with a Nanolight material that is both extremely strong, damp and light. the Pinnacle line also utilizes the successful triaxial braid/hybritech sidewalls as well. The result: the skis turn on a time, but stand up to the “lay ‘em over on clear ice” test with high marks.

The new K2 Pinnacle Series replaces the much loved AMP series with space age technology taking a lesson from Rossi's popular Soul 7 ski.

The new K2 Pinnacle Series utilizes space age technology NANOlite taking a lesson from Rossi’s popular Soul 7 ski. Designed with advice from Pro Skier Seth Morrison, the skis are incredibly light without the concomitant squirreliness associated with most light skis. From L to R, Pinnacle 118, Pinnacle 105 and Pinnacle 95.

I tested the flagship of their all mountain ski, the Pinnacle 95 and could not get it to chatter even when laying it over on the icy plates. In the frozen vegetables it turned on a dime and the swing weight was so light I almost did a 270 degree turn my first time out of the gate. At speed, the ski was damp, tracked well and carved with precision. When I turned those in, I asked Mike Rosen and his crew which ski they would take to Europe if they could only bring one pair and they universally reached for the Pinnacle 105, the 95’s burlier older brother. Unlike the narrower version, this ski had powder rocker and was wide enough to battle unforgiving breakable crust but still hold an edge in firmer conditions. Again, the ski preformed admirably, but not quite as well as its younger brother on the icy plates and firmer pack. It did, however, carve and hold an edge on the groomers and its super light swing weight made the ski a joy in the trees. After all was said and done, I agree with the K2 crew, if I was going to Europe I would take this ski to handle about anything you could throw at it. The Pinnacle 118 is their Powder Version, a great ski to take down Davis, Shasta or Rose proper off the top when dropping 4 or 5 thousand feet midwinter and needing to be ready for any and most likely, all conditions from deep pow to breakable crust.

Next I tried one of the iKonic series which is replacing their popular AMP line of skis. Great for bumps, tight trees and generally messing around inbounds. I tried out the 85Ti and it really did drive like a Ferrari. Utilizing the same NANOlite technology, the skis were infinitely responsive and incredibly quick edge to edge and held a carve no problem. This would be a great ski if you knew you were staying inbounds for the day or you wanted to slay some bumps or ski the trees.

The new iKonic series from K2 employ ultra light materials to minimize swing weight making the skis nimble and quick but still powerful in the carving department. Overall, a high performing but forgiving ski.

The new iKonic series from K2 employ ultra light materials to minimize swing weight making the skis nimble and quick but still powerful in the carving department. Overall, a high performing but forgiving ski.

As I was turning in the 85Ti’s, a woman was standing at the K2 booth holding a pair of K2 FulLUVit 98’s. She was absolutely gushing and elated and declared that it was the best ski she had ever been on in her life. The Full of It and its burlier sister, the Loveboat 108 also employs the same Channelite Technology as the men’s line. Here is her smiling face demonstrating why so many women just love K2.

She LOVES the FulLUVit 98Ti ski and will be buying a couple a pair she says… so that she has another when she wears the first ones out!

She LOVES the FulLUVit 98Ti ski and will be buying a couple a pair she says… so that she has another when she wears the first ones out!

I wish I could have given you some info on other brands, but at that point I had skied all morning and it was time to go have some fun in the bumps with the fam. If anyone else demoed any skis they liked, please share the info and I’ll be happy to throw it up on the page.

Tomorrow will be HOT pushing 60 at 10,000 feet. So, if you want some decent skiing come early!

Sven

Spring Conditions Ahead!

Plenty of snow remains to be skied both on and off-piste. Warning though, it is Rock Hard first thing in the morning.

Plenty of snow remains to be skied both on and off-piste. Warning though, it is Rock Hard first thing in the morning.

Skiing was great today after it loosened up… and that took awhile. However, High Pressure has moved in once again to provide sunny skies and beautiful weather. Expect the slopes to loosen up much earlier tomorrow and even more so on Friday when temps in Reno are pushing 80. Mid-morning should be optimal tomorrow.

In other good news, Turnin Tim has taken some positive steps toward healing the last several days and we are cautiously optimistic at this point. One thing for sure, he is a fighter, but he has a long long way to go. Keep your thoughts flowing for our First Chair buddy!

Sven