Tuesday, November 24, 2015

the rest of opening weekend

What comes after Opening Day?  Opening Weekend, when those of us who had to work get to get back on our skis.  This year it felt like I fell back into the ski season routine more readily than I had in the past, finding all the clothing and gear I needed (including hand warmers and socks), figuring out my layers, getting up in time to make bacon for breakfast.  The only flutter of indecision came with respect to my skis: Alta has had 45" inches of snow thus far, settling into a 20" base, and although my Salomons were newly waxed and tuned, I feared for their bases and ended up skiing on my old beater Volkls instead, just in case of rocks.

Saturday, with Sugarloaf behind me

This year could not have been more different from last year, weather-wise.  There was no unsettled weather, with clear and bright blue skies the whole weekend.  Saturday was chilly, starting out around 18 F at the start, but there was no wind so it was really only my toes that got cold in the morning.  There were not very many people there first thing in the morning - which was nice because there is not that much open yet, forcing everyone to ski the same trails over and over and over and over again - but we had to switch to the singles line around 10:30 a.m. to combat the lines.  Sunday was largely a carbon copy of the day before, perhaps a little warmer and with just a tiny little bit of wind.  Again, we were able to have chairlift rides to ourselves until 10:30 a.m., and then the people showed up.

Carbon copy (near the Collins angle station)

The conditions were actually pretty good, dearth of snow considering.  H said that it was much better than Opening Day had been; no new snow meant they were able to groom things into submission and while high traffic areas (like Corkscrew - ugh) got skied off, the trails did not get bumped up.  When we switched over to the "Sugar side," which we did for the last run of each day, going "around the world" through Sugarloaf and out through Sunnyside, the snow was really pretty good there and with a fraction of the people that were skiing the Collins side.

By Sunday evening, our knees were a little sore and our legs were a little stiff.  That's just what happening on Opening Weekend.

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