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Winter Will Return

First of all, let me state unequivocally that the “roast” of certain “Squallywood-ready” Rose employees on the last post was not meant for 99.9% of the folks working up there, but for the .1% that have somehow forgotten that we are “guests”, that we pay their salary and that their job description includes risk mitigation and civility as well as “please” and “thank you’s”. I have always been surprised when a Rose employee is substantially less than pleasant on the mountain. They stick out like a sore thumb relative to all the folks at Rose that go out of the their way to share the joy of just being outside and working at one of the best resorts in Tahoe.

If your panties are still twisted…. now is a perfect opportunity to look in the mirror. Perhaps some polishing of your “customer service skills” are in order. For the rest of you at Rose, keep up the good work! (your head is decidedly NOT up your arse)

Today was wonderful with sunny skies and the chutes reopened yesterday. Only select gates are open with a warning that accessing the chutes through anything but these gates will be met with swift retaliation and a loss of skiing privileges. Unfortunately, when I was checking out the electronic sign on the bottom of Slide, the sign did not say which gates were actually open as they usually do, only that “Select Gates” were open… another info snafu for sure. The gates that are open should be listed! I did see the Jackpot gate open from NW and wanted to share Kevin’s post from yesterday on conditions below for all interested chute skiers:

Picked up the kids after early release yesterday (2/25) and hit Rose for some afternoon turns. We were surprised to see Jackpot gate open and decided to roll the dice…conditions were fun, chalky “packed powder”, no ice. Compared with Squaw / Alpine where we also ski frequently, Rose has the best coverage and conditions by a fair margin at this point. Another note, the upper Jetta “luge run” is a blast and the kicker in the lower Jetta park is just as big as anything in Squaw’s Gold Coast park.

So there you go! Great they are back open again. Do remember that many of the chutes have slid and the lower aspects are filled with very chunky debris at their bottoms which is almost unskiable so choose wisely when entering.

Park features have changed recently. The two jumps in the Pondo Park have been removed unfortunately. Too bad, they were quite popular. Boxes and rails have been added in Pondo as well. Jump between Jetta and Ramsey has stayed big. The LUGE park in Jetta is in place and reportedly a blast. The two jumps on Galena Park are lots of fun as along as you land in the LZ and not out in the flats like I saw yesterday (look for the bloody spot out between the jumps). The kid flew so far that we though he might hit the kicker of the 2nd jump. Looked a lot like the challenger flight with a total gear explosion when he hit (see below). We named his move the “Big Ernie” after Leonardo Decaprio’s severely retarded character “Ernie” in the movie “Whats eating Gilbert Grape?” The best way of realizing just how far this kid flew… from this position he actually flipped backwards and landed on his face!

LIke an impending car crash, we just couldn't look away but KNEW how much it was gonna hurt. He was still headed almost straight up in this photo!

LIke an impending car crash, we just couldn’t look away but KNEW how much it was gonna hurt. He was still headed almost straight up in this photo!

Before hurling off something you might want to check it out with small moves first, right?

In terms of weather, well, all is on track for some cold snow coming our way. No one knows for sure what we’ll get yet but it looks like it will start sometime Friday and end sometime Saturday and give us perhaps a foot, give or take… well, a foot.

Here is the GFS precipitation map for this weekend. Keep your fingers crossed that we can get our powder skis out again this year!

Sven

Cold snow be comin! May even see some in town for a change!

Cold snow be comin! May even see some in town for a change! (graph is in liquid water equivalent)

 

Ski Area Hiring

Apparently so many folks working in the large ski area on the other side of the Lake have jumped ship and gone to Jackson Hole, Japan or just about anywhere else that has more snow, that they have forwarded an ad for a mid-winter hiring fair.

“Looking for qualified applicants to fill ski resort positions in all departments. Applicants should be aloof, pretentious, haughty, self-serving, indifferent, selfish, vain, thankless, arrogant and have little or no social skills. Applicants should have experience in the ski industry in their areas of specialty and should not really have enjoyed their job in a very long time. They should be easily bothered by guests and have little or no anger management. Potential applicants that demonstrate a good sense of humor, respect for others, solid interpersonal skills, a genuine love of the sport and gratitude for life itself as well as connect easily with guests need not apply.”

Thought there might be some folks around here that could do well with this job description. Now don’t get your panties twisted, unless this job description DOES fit. And if it does, hey, it might just be a great opportunity for you! Just sayin…

Skiing today was wonderful with clear skies, fantastic snow and wind down to a manageable level. Waterfall and NW offered some of the best skiing of the year. Some folks were enjoying the bumps on Gregs and Sunset and the off-piste was pretty hard under the 2″ we got, so you had to choose carefully. Although there were HS races on Silver, Bruces was  groomed as well Aida’s. Rode with folks from Europe, Russia, Vermont, Illinois, Nebraska, Florida, Texas and elsewhere. Most had been at other resorts around the lake yesterday and heard the buzz about Rose and came on over. Quite a few skiers for a Tuesday!

Looks like it will be warmer tomorrow with a cool down this weekend with some snow. The trend over the last few days has been upward on snow totals. Lets hope that trend continues.

Have a great day!

Sven

Still way below average on our snow totals for the year. Hopefully next weekend helps a little bit!

Still way below average on our snow totals for the year. Hopefully next weekend helps a little bit!

 

 

Winter is Here!

Felt Telluride-like up there today with a brick E-NE wind as you came off the face runs. Single digits up top this morning made for an incredible surface. It’s a shame we didn’t get about another foot out of the storm. That would have resulted in stellar conditions. On-piste is quite good with the off-piste basically “dust on crust” unless you find somewhere where the wind blew it in deeper. Found a couple of those yesterday. Waterfall and Six Gun were great skiing today with the caveat that Lower Waterfall was not groomed so you had to swing over to Six Gun to finish. The groomers are mixing it up a bit giving us a chance to ski some different terrain, which is great. You just have to be careful first thing in the morning doing any Speed runs that you don’t end up surprised in a bad way at 60 mph.

Guns have been working overtime making more snow so its good to see that the mountain hasn’t given up on the season. Strange that the Upper Silver gun hasn’t been churning out snow for the Silver Face as that won’t last long in the spring heat. We already saw some rocks popping out last weekend. Hopefully they will get to that as soon as they finish polishing up the base areas.

The cats were working in Upper Jetta and it looks like they are building some park features in there which  could be a lot of fun in the days ahead. I’ll keep you posted!

Snow is great but dress warm. It was chilly this morning and will be tomorrow as well.

I love Winter!

Almost forgot… heard a great story today. A liftie asked a guest (who appeared clueless at the high speed chair gate) to come on out and sit on the chair at the load board. Instead, the woman comes out and sits down ON the load board when the chair comes around the bull wheel and raps her firmly on the back of the helmet… and we wonder why the lifties appear tired after big weeks. These guys work their butts off to keep people safe, but dammit, sometimes, you just can’t stop stupid!

Sven

Burr….

Its cold, its hard. More racers everywhere. Think Vermont. However, the 2″ of new snow has helped the surface considerably. And as the 5th biggest storm of the year, we are just happy to not have the snow sizzling away in the Junuary heat. East wind is blowing pretty good on Pondo and up the NW Chair.

Areas newest term from the ski marketers lexicon, the Chutes are now described as “Firm Packed Powder” which is about as good as “Clear Packed Powder” which might be a better description… it should read “Icy Plates”. Don’t expect the Chutes to open anytime soon either as this week is forecast to stay fairly chilly. You may have to wait late week or longer to get in and attack some of that “Firm Packed Powder”. Don’t forget your self arrest skills if you do go down and start sliding in there. Get your pole tip in early and hang on tight!

Might be something coming in next weekend. Cross your fingers for a pattern change that brings us some more pow. One good thing… it does look much colder whatever this way comes.

Sven

PS    Its hovering around 12 degrees on top. Good time to see if your tongue really will stick to the safety     bar.

Far West Takeover

Big Far West Race Today with lots of folks from all other competing. Lower Silver was closed completely as well as the area North of the Zephyr lift in the flats under Gold’s.

As you can see, lots of racing going on today!

As you can see, lots of racing going on today!

Rose side provided a much better “skiers per acre ratio” with Gregs skiing well after the best grooming job on it all year. Another warmer than forecast day with comfortable skiing. Silver was mushed out by 11:00 but other runs still had some good snow. Seemed like racers (and their skis) were everywhere today.

Looks like a 2nd hand Ski Race sale but it was just the racks!

Looks like a 2nd hand Ski Race sale but it was just the racks!

Ski you later,

Sven

The Pit of Despair

In general, Rose does an incredible job of grooming and does twice as well as most resorts with half the resources… so when one finds a groomer anomaly it is unusual. This focus on quality control allows early morning skiers the thrill of cruising the slopes at relatively high speeds when there are only a few guests and grooming is billiard table smooth and consistent. Today on Waterfall, above it’s split with Six Gun, a hole was left from last night’s grooming that was half a hot tub size and more than a foot deep in spots with almost vertical walls and ice boulders in the bottom. A run into it would have most likely resulted in a double ejection superman, or a series of spectacular tomahawks if on a board. If hit at speed before the sun was on it, this could have resulted in an out of control slide for life into the trees for any of us. Several folks looked at it and shook their heads, in their combined 100 years of skiing on Mt. Rose, it was one of the worst anomalies they had seen in their long careers here.  I marked it as best I could with what I had and let the liftie know at the top. Patrol came down and shoveled it in and broke down the vertical walls thankfully.

The lesson here is to expect the unexpected. No grooming is perfect and in low light one small mistake in judgement can result in paying a hefty price, and sometimes, the ultimate one. For those of us that like to lay it out in the morning, beware, in low light the pit of despair may be lurking!

Be sure to let a liftie or patrol know whenever you come across these risk management hazards so that they may mitigate the risk for guests. They will undoubtedly thank you graciously from the bottom of their hearts for it. Our safety, is of course, their top priority.

Today was a great day to cruise with Six Gun, Aida’s, Bullwhip, Waterfall and NW all groomed. On the Slide side, Silver, Bonanza and Bruces were groomed with Bonanza skiing well followed by Silver once it warmed up. Eventually it did turn to mush but will stay much harder tomorrow with the colder temps coming in. Have to follow the sun today as it’s 5 degrees colder than yesterday. In terms of weather, most computer models are now seeing a potential change in the overall pattern over the country with a blocking High pressure system setting up over the upper Midwest which could set us up for some more interesting weather putting the Pacific Ocean in play once again as our High retrogrades West and makes room for storm systems to come down from the North fetching moisture along the way off the Pacific. Nothing is for sure yet but it is looking promising according to our friends at: www.tahoeweatherblog.com. Even NOAA is starting to mention the potential for a pattern change in the long range so computer models are beginning to agree that the East will warm finally and we will be cooling. This temp change alone will help us! Check to the map of where we were at a few days ago…  (hint: The redder the hotter)

This is where we have been for some time with incredibly high temps and  a NE that is hating life!

This is where we have been for some time with incredibly high temps and a NE that is hating life!

Now take a look at where we are headed.

Notice the entire West Coast has cooled off the NW is finally warming.

Notice the entire West Coast has cooled off and the NW is finally warming.

This blocking High Pressure in the East and Midwest often opens the door for Pacific Storms to have a much better chance to get in and dump in the West. Please do not misquote me, I am not saying a storm is coming, I am just saying that it appears changes are underfoot and that February may go out with a white sport coat versus shorts and a lei. Lets hope so anyway!

Long may you Turn,

Sven

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