Monday, December 21, 2009

the big wet

out of town for a few days, but got back in time for an afternoon session on sunday.  it felt like a midweek day, with just so few people.  the skiing was okay, although very heavy and hard to stay dry.  also, nearly impossible to keep the goggles clear.  could have (should have?) stayed for more, but it is football season, and i had to come and watch the broncos absolutely choke against the hated raiders.  arrrrgh!
today brought more of the same.  we got nearly 1/2 inch of rain in the valley yesterday, but mostly snow on the hill.  so with 8 overnight, and knowing the temps were going to get warmer over the day, i decided to get up there early.  and the lifts were not running.  okay, chair one was not running.  did it ever open?  they quickly got chair four up, and the skiing thru those great trees was quite fun, albeit challenging.  i left before chair 5 was running, so hopefully some of you got some turns in up top. 

so yesterday i got to ski with ted b. he and his lovely wife had climbed the mountain before it opened, and while she had had enough by 1pm, he was putting on dry clothes, excited to ski until the lifts closed behind him.  what a great effort. 

today i got to ski with jen and jerry.  and if you could have seen us, it was jerry and me chasing her down the deep, wet, snow.  way to turn up the speed. 

tedshred has added a very detailed analysis of the snowpack.  please read his comment on my last post.  especially the last line about being very careful, and making sure you are with solid, smart and well equiped partners. 

to me, i was not that upset that the area was having trouble getting lifts open. it seems like a lot of work.  but why can't they get it open on time, or close?  what do the ski areas in wetter climates do?  i don't imagine they open late every time it snows more than 6 inches of wet.  i am not going to go off against the employees or management, but do wonder if something could be done better? 

the forecast looks great after today. cooling temps and more snow.  with luck the next three-five days, before the crowds really arrive, could be awesome.  is it warm enough that cooling temps with freeze the top of the snowpack, for yet another ice layer?  or will new snow come in time before ice forms?  and will the cooling temps break the bonds in the existing heavy snow, to make it ski and seem lighter?  we'll start to get our answers tonight and tomorrow. 

okay, so my comments about the base lodge have caused some debate and consternation.  first of all, the comments are my opinion.  it is my blog.  but i don't want to piss people off. mostly trying to be funny.  but, i do wish that they had built things a bit differently when they re-built chair one, so that more parking would immediately access this chair.  i know some people don't mind riding chair six, i am just not one of them.  and i get that the base area and day care is comparable and perhaps better than many other places, but that since i don't have kids, this does not affect me.  things could have been done differently, and likely better, but they are what they are, and all in all, it is still a very fun ski hill, with enough amenities for all. 

now, i will say, that the parking situation can still be made better.  i do not understand why they do not have a parking assistant in the early morning hours.  i got there today, and the cedar lot was a mess. huge spaces between rows, then some were parked three cars deep.  since there is no parking assistant, we all need to do a better job of policing ourselves.  or perhaps we should all buy old beater subarus that we can trash and bash and make a sport out of creative parking, demolition derby style.  oops, wait, i guess that is already the case. 

see you all in the pow!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Chris, you couldn't be more right on about the parking situation. I have uttered all of the above curses countless times over, and am slowly bending to the repressive will of the totalitarian powers-that-be. Just following the ignorant masses... like a good industrial resort-goer. I did recently witness one "black sheep's" rather comical parking lot rebellion - the kid actually drove his beater pickup (unwittingly)through the slopeside end of what passes for a parking lot just above the base lodge, and down to chair 6 skier corral where he realized the error of his navigation. I thought some snowboarder has going to "hit" this newly offered sweet jib. Kicker was his 4wd had gone out the day before. Wonder how he ever got out of there...
    Anyway, so as to offer suggestion, not just criticism, Snowbowl - also parking space challenged - gives away lift tix to volunteer a.m. car parkers. Now these people aren't quite ready to work a west coast car ferry where you're not parked satisfactorily until you're rubbing bumpers, but the difference in vehicle capacity and organization (think stoned college kids)is night and day! It's one pretty simple and cost effective solution if you ask me (other than re-opening the Cedar? lot, at least on weekdays). All these folks need is a piece of 'boo or 2 to wave around - no resort jacket necessary.
    Funny, I believe I was told pre-season that all the parking passes had been sold already. Guess their owners have either misplaced them or are not going skiing.
    P.S. Broncos.... ditto.