Yep, thats me alright. Although many are hoping for feet and feet of pow… I don’t see it. Its 40 degrees and raining as I write this at 7640 feet and things are not looking that good in the short term for any big cool off. On top of that, the wind is raging, so make sure you check lift status and temps before coming up… you might want to bring a squeegee and an umbrella as well, oh yeah, scratch the umbrella since its blowing about the speed limit on Hwy 80 through Nevada right now… “Cow!”


Cat poop?

Yes, thats right. Cat poop would be the description of the 3″ of new snow today… poopy, sticky, wet diuretic cat poop. With only the Wizard on line folks would pull up with their ski racks on top of their cars and turn right around again and head back down the hill. This was the view out the windshield through what the ski industry world-wide would call “Wet Powder”. As you can see, this “clear powder” looks and feels a lot like rain. Looks like the prognosticators are off by a couple of thousand fee on their snow levels today. With the forecast for even more warmth this afternoon, we may only get snow on the higher peaks. Sure, we wanted wet moist snow to form a base, but it looks as though we might even lose some base in the short run with this stuff. Lets hope the Snow Gods are kind and the snow level drops without too much damage to what pack we do have. In the short term,,, start thinking about looking around in your garage for those Christmas lights… it will be time better spent for sure!


You can just make out the skier in the blue jacket in the chair through the onslaught of "wet powder" or what I would categorize as cat poop.
You can just make out the skier in the blue jacket in the chair through the onslaught of “wet powder” or what I would categorize as cat poop.

Mt. Rose Groomers = Miracle Workers

I don’t know how they did it but somehow, somewhere last nights grooming crew found enough snow to significantly improve Lower Ramsey hodgepodge of dirt, rocks and DG. KC and LR were in much better shape today with no snowmaking to help create some material on the Rose side. I tell you those groomers covered almost every bare patch with snow from who knows where… nice job guys! As you can see from the snow post just off ATW, there is really less than a foot of snow on most of the mountain.

Instead the snowmaking is being done with a dozen or more machines pumping out the white stuff as fast as possible (see pic below). It looked today like the Minetrain Cat Track might be skiable soon, but the Silver Face was still pretty barren and rocky, same with the area around the base.

In terms of the lifts… looks like it might be Lakeview today with the winds blowing. NW has been blown out all morning so far. Check status before coming up. Although, truth be known, I would rather take the slow ride up Lakeview then deal with over crowded slopes. Sure, I am a “people person” but not when it comes to nice fast cruisers on the groomers, in that case, Lao Tzu was correct… “Less is More.”


Mr. Brown Returns to Town

The weekend skier traffic has left its mark… and when I say “mark” I mean skid mark. There are decidedly some very thin spots on the hill, and when I say “thin spots” I mean spots where there is little or no snow or equal amounts of snow and DG or snow and dirt. The grousers and tiller have also been picking up base material in places because they just don’t have much to work with. The same reason there is an icy veneer under the corduroy… just not enough snow to really sink the tiller deep enough to get some really good surface conditions. NW in particular got worked and has very thin cover. Not a good run to take your new skis. The wind is also blowing once again making conditions feel much colder than they really are. With the ongoing wind surfaces conditions were firmer today than they have been in the past few days.

In a Hart to Heart talk on the lift, Jim Hart also revealed that Lower Lakeview had improved mightily from last week and upon inspection his report proved truthful. Siding over to Wild Horse we found the best groomed run on the hill and went back several times. However when all is said and done, despite the DG, rock and dirt, a morning session skiing is still better than sitting in an office or digging a ditch. Sliding on the snow is just so much damn fun, no matter the conditions!


Pretty pretty pretty good…

Upper lot filled by 9:20 am… wow. There are a LOT of folks skiing Rose in December that don’t usually get up here this time of year. Judging by the crowds, I would say the lift, parking, patrol and ski school staff should get a hefty Christmas Bonus…

Windy today and the snow warmed up enough yesterday to be little less palatable… check lift status before you come on up. NW was moving pretty slowly first thing this morning. So… skiing was pretty pretty pretty good-nothing more, nothing less. Skier traffic over the weekend has definitely uncovered some decomposing granite in spots and rocks in others. Until you know the run, ski a little cautiously… or don’t they are YOUR skis and boards.


BTW: Unofficial’s first contender for Nice Guy of the Year Award goes to Don Smith of Smith Video. If you need a video made, he is your man!

The Burning Dude and Saturday’s Child

Last night was a great night for the Sky Tavern Junior Ski Program with several hundred attendees enjoying the art cars, the raffle, auction and of course, the Burning Dude! Although a little shaky getting lit, once going the seemingly invincible Burning Dude did finally succumb to the flames… but not before putting on a pretty good imitation of The Terminator. He obviously learned that tuck from PSIA Professional Mark Helleckson who is constantly telling his students to “get down, get forward”. For those that showed, thanks for supporting a great program.

That was followed by a crystal clear morning, great skiing conditions and much warmer temps on the hill. If there was a downside it was the number of people who showed up creating parking and lift line frustrations. Although almost everyone seemed to be enjoying the early season near perfect conditions… as always, there were a few folks who were, shall we say, a “little tense” in the lift lines or in the parking lot.

I say, relax, you are sliding around on snow in early December top to bottom and its pretty darn awesome. Tomorrow looks to be a repeat of today with some more wind in the pm. Ski you up there!