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Critter kingdom Rises Again

The animals are out looking to fill their empty stomachs after a very long and hard winter… bear tracks are common but lion, fox, coon, rabbit and of course, squirrel tracks have also been spotted in and around the resort. Yesterday I found myself  hemmed in by brush following the only snow down a ravine and ended up on a bear den porch with lots of big piles of poo as well as pretty big bear tracks, and more ominously, lots of little cub tracks… I skedaddled through the brush pretty darn quick after looking around before Mama Bear roused from her morning nap.

Spring has definitely sprung but these cold mornings will still provide pretty rock hard snow until the sun has a chance to work its high angle magic. Keep in mind the wind will also play a pretty powerful role in helping or hindering the sun’s ability to warm the snow to creamy corn levels. Count on upper 30’s or lower 40’s to warm the snow if the night froze hard as well as a couple hours to make a dent in the hardback. On the other hand, cold night conditions can lead to nice groomers in the morning from Dave and his crew. Bonanza will probably nice today after remaining ungroomed (and heinously ugly) yesterday morning.

According to the lifties this is also Slide Lodge’s last weekend this season… bathrooms on the Slide Side?… nobody seems to know at this point.

The weekend weather is shaping up nicely. Ski you out there!

Sven

Cold and Hard

Yesterdays very moist snow with free water roaming in the pack combined with last night’s hard freeze will make for some very cold and hard conditions this morning… think rigor mortis with a crust and you’ll have the right idea. The sun should loosen up conditions mid-morning if the wind stays down. Enjoy your last Wednesday of the Season folks!

In other news the BC is offering free skiing with your pet as well as free brown klister application (also from your pet). Where ever you end up sliding around on the snow, have a great day!

Sven

Nai’a Selby enjoying a late in the day BC session with her aptly named dog, Sierra

Low Crowds/High Untracked Ratio

OK. It wasn’t the deepest or lightest snow but hey, it is the middle of April y’know. Fog was also a part of the goggle picture and we needed wipers at times but still, according to anyone there, it was great getting out in April and sharing some new snow on the hill.

Running on a rain crust, snow wanted to move downhill when turned in deeply or on steep terrain, thus The Chutes remained closed today. Avy conditions in the BC will have to be monitored closely on steep terrain or under 8000 feet where the snow pack experienced quite a bit of rain the last 24 hours.

So thats the story. The Chutes will probably open tomorrow on a rare mostly sunny day and then Thursday we will see another colder but drier system move through… then By Gawd the sun is forecast to shine over the weekend… amazing!

Solo tracks around the mountain were pretty common this morning. Shown here is lower Lakeview from your’s truly.

Sven

Lower Lakeview was mighty nice this morning

Catch the 757

Thats how many inches we have now accumulated… new snow today amounts to half a foot or less and don’t be thinking dry powder… it is wet and dense. Rain yesterday went almost to the top of the mountain. Beats working on the lawnmower though. Keep in mind this is the last Two-fer of the year as next week transitions to the 4 days a week Thursday through Sunday scenario.

Happy Turning,

Sven

Cold BEER HERE!

Skiing today was fantastic with lots of spring lines, pow and the chutes. Although many had slid out on a rain crust there was still some good skiing to be found in the trees. BC was also good. Tomorrow is the annual Beer Slam at Slide!

This pic kinda says it all when it comes to mid-April of 2017. Hope you are still as stoked as I am this winter!

 

Out of town for a few days. Hoppy Easter!

Sven

 

 

Powder Stampede: Hide the Sheep! (& Lift Maintenance Rocks)

This morning was a scene right out of the Keystone Cops as first we lined up at Northwest, then were told Lakeview would open so we stampeded uphill and the ranks were changed pretty dramatically, then a little after nine were told that, no, NW would open first and then (and what a sight it was to behold) then it was as if floodgates had opened and humanity with skis and boards attached to their feet just poured over the barriers at both loads and amidst the equipment clatter new places were claimed out of the confusion. Equipment was stuck in the nets, people went down, over and through… Chaos with a Capital “C” reigned supreme. Those in the front were giddy with happiness at their good fortune, those that wound up in the back, not so much. I have to say though that despite some grumpiness, most folks remained with good positive attitudes and patiently waited for the chair to carry them up to April Heaven…

And make no mistake about it, it was April Heaven. Although, after 3 or 4 runs NW went back on wind hold and it was the long slow ride up Lakeview in the wind that we all love SO much. Many (including me) left at that point. I did hear that NW opened back up later. Skiing out of the wind zone was awesome. Although the top of NW was blown into wind slab, there was a lot of high quality, (if not the lightest) snow down lower on the mountain. I gotta say the four runs I took were worth every minute of waiting… small crowds, good snow and a good old fashioned stampede to mix things up a little made the morning a Winner.

The Mt. Rose Lift Maintenance and Lift Crew

As I was leaving I heard some grumbling aimed at the Maintenance and Lift Crews for putting the lift on hold. Hey, to all you entitled folks who believe the winds should not blow when you ski… REALLY? The Mt. Rose Maintenance and Lift Crews under the leadership of Jake Brown probably work harder than anyone else on the mountain to help make your experience a good one when you come up. Yesterday they kept Zephyr spinning despite the winds being on the edge of shutting down for about 4 hours, which makes a lot of extra work for them. After de-icing the lifts this morning in 60 mph winds and then keeping them running despite the rime and other issues, the last thing they need to hear is anyone bitching, probably a nice “Thank You” would go a long way. These guys climb towers in zero degrees and hammer on sheave wheels hanging it all out there in 100 mph winds so that we can get some skiing in. The ONLY reason the lifts run as much as they do at Mt. Blows is that these guys put to shame every other mountain’s maintenance and lift crews. So, next time you want to complain when a lift is shut down, I suggest you don some black Carhartt work gear and boots and climb a tower in a storm at about 6 am in 100 mph winds, then, and ONLY then do you have a right to bitch at these guys.

I know I speak for a vast majority of the Mt. Rose skiing community when I say we fully and wholeheartedly appreciate all your hard work keeping the lifts open on one of the windiest mountains in the Sierra so that we can make some turns and have some fun. To Jake, Hunter, Frank, Mike, Steveski and the other Jake, thank you guys for kicking ass this winter! Almost all of us really appreciate it!

Sven