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Spring. Really?

If you thought it was gunna be another warm spring like day…. forget about it. Its 22 degrees this morning and colder than much of December… snow should be good and rock hard for awhile unless the groomers hit it while cold and the tillers loosened it up good. We will see. Plan on coral and anything less will be gladly accepted. The sun should work its magic on the sun facing slopes but it will be awhile.

In other news the Party shall go on! Looks like the Passholder party with music will happen today around noon on and lots of swag should be given away as well as some trips to Mexico. Your chances of winning these may be 1 out of 6000 or so given there are four trips, but hey, better than nothing. There will also be some other give aways and hopefully a season wrap up by our buddy Charlie the MC who makes it fun.

The Slide Lot or Upper parking lot should also host a little unofficial get together (think free beer) look for Sven and a keg… I’ll be around. Tomorrow Rose will host a Mother’s Day Brunch with Mimosa specials. Be kind to your Mom. Get her drunk and on skis at the same time (don’t forget to make sure her medical insurance is up to date).

Have fun out there no matter what and remember… no matter how bad the conditions are… its way better than changing your oil today or taking out the garbage!

Sven

Soft Serve Elmers (with foghorn optional)

“How foggy was it?” you ask. There were many rides where you couldn’t make out the chair ahead of you.

Well, it is May I kept telling myself as I watched the one run Johnny’s peel off towards the bar. Had a woman next to me ask how I thought the snow might be on the first ride up Zephyr and right before I could answer a snowboarder came Tomahawking down Climax Bowl into the trees at top centrifugal force… (I was pretty sure his head might fly off). I turned to her and gestured… “there’s your answer” I said. But I was also quick to add, “no matter how crappy it might be, though, no vis, sticky wet cement… it still beats a day at work.” She nodded hesitatingly, and then promptly fell face first off the chair as the first sticky glue grabbed her ski right at the unload. Saw a LOT of walkers on the flats with snowboards in hand. Not a great day for boarding. I felt kinda guilty skiing past whole families with smaller kids on boards postholing… then seeing them the next run and the next, kinda borders on child abuse almost it seemed to me. Poor little hoards on boards.

So, in the next 10 runs I heard a lot of grumbling about the fog, the oatmeal like snow consistency, the lack of spring skiing etc. Folks, wake up! Its May, most of the time we can’t even ski this time of year, much less ride a lift up at bargain basement prices. Although I felt like going home at around 10 am, my wife came up and we made it a great morning having fun on some low angle pow off ATW, Manzo, Powder Ridge and elsewhere. Fun is where you find it for sure in skiing, and just as importantly who you find it with. As were leaving around 1:00 pm the sun came out and turned the snow to mucilage. My son spent the afternoon up there and when he got home said it was some of the worst snow conditions he had ever seen up there. When I asked him why he stayed till closing he said, “It was still fun. Beats school for sure.” So there you go. It all comes down to the “compared to what” question.

If you were comparing today to a mid-winter pow day, well then, yeah, you are going to be disappointed, but hey, if you just set the bar low enough, you’ll be impressed that it wasn’t nearly as shitty as you thought it might be. While others were grumbling I just sat back and was glad to be resting my legs… and peered into the mystery of the deep woods of the Carson Range through the tunnel of London style fog and decided, it was a beautiful day after all.

BTW: The Chutes never opened today (and for good reason)

Sven

There is no “Normal”

“What is “normal” to the spider is chaos to the fly.”

In this case Mother Nature is the spider… you can take a good guess at who the fly might be…

I encourage you to check out the http://www.tahoeweatherblog.com/ latest post on this summer and next year. Although technical, it is a good read and worthy of your time. Keep in mind that these guys were the only ones to predict the January Dumpapalooza three weeks out… They are normally the most accurate for the East side of the Sierra’s but this winter they were exceptional on their forecasts relative to other forecasters. In any event, our weather is changing if you haven’t noticed, which will have implications on your lifestyle.

In other news, today ushers in clouds and wind as a precursor to the rapid drop down of temps and snow this weekend. A trough is headed our way and we are already feeling the effects of the SW gusts. Lifts may be on wind hold today so check the website before coming up. Snow is in the forecast for both Sat and Sun although not huge amounts.

“Are we done with avalanches for the Year?” someone asked me yesterday…

A resolute “NO” is the answer! Wet slide conditions on just about all slopes will again rear their ugly heads as snow heats up with the sun’s (yes, even through the clouds) radiation and temps continue to be issues late morning into the evening. All BC users should exercise caution when skiing or traversing across steep terrain. Most are small and their effects negligible and/or avoidable.  However, there are places in the Sierra with steep terrain where the slide will appear innocuous enough at their meager beginnings of your ski tracks, but but pick speed and major amounts of snow that ultimately result in a  freight train of snow moving at 40 to 60 mph and many feet deep in terrain traps like steep and deep gulches and couloirs or at the bottom of bowls. You won’t be out skiing that… especially if you are being may-tagged. In fact, this week I am still seeing many thousand foot run outs in big mountain terrain in the Sierra’s. As temps drop tomorrow all that will change and more typical avy conditions of mid winter will be the result including storm and wind slabs in wind deposition areas on the leeward sides of ridges. Just because the Sierra Avalanche Center is done for the year doesn’t mean the slides are (they don’t appear to read the reports much anyway).

So, today slopes will warm again for the last day for awhile as we head back into winter tomorrow. I hope you enjoyed this week of warm weather, I know I did. And good luck to you, come what may.

Sven

ABeeYouTeeFull Thursday Laid out before you

Winds are calm, sun is bright and it looks like a great spring day early on. After today more low pressure will begin to make itself felt, and according to Tahoe Weather Blog, it may be off and on the rest of May so you might want to “Get it while its hot” if you know what I mean.

In other news… just wondering if anybody out there in Skiville knows when these signs were put up in Lower Manzo and by who? Mysteries abound on this mountain…. Debra Freeman perhaps? Let us know if you know.

Have a great day!

Sven

Turning Tim Makes 100 Days!

Weather was perfect for sunsets, wine, beer and lots of runs in The Chutes and elsewhere with a nearly perfect quite satiny corn-o-copia of great snow, sun and blue blue skies.

Congrats to Turnin Tim pictured below for his 100 Days this winter. Wasn’t always easy in all the fog, rain, blizzard and windy conditions. Our hats off to you Tim!

Not much to say otherwise other than it was nearly a perfect weekend on all fronts. Hope y’all had as much fun as we did!

Sven