Sunday, November 29, 2015

total outfit fail

Some people, the lucky ones, have a quiver of skis, enabling them to pick and choose what they want to ride depending on the conditions.  I seem to be acquiring a quiver of ski outerwear.  In theory, this should enable me to put together just the right layering ensemble for any weather.  The problem is that I can only work with the information I've got.  On the Friday after Thanksgiving, for example, I checked Alta's current conditions/mountain report, which told me that the 5:00 a.m. mid-mountain temperature was 18F, that the day's forecasted highs would be in the low 20s, that it would be a little breezy and be partly cloudy.  Given that information, I put on a lightweight base layer, a thin fleece and a part-down jacket, plus mid-weight long johns and my winter-weight ski pants.

When we got up to Alta, it was completely socked in, snowing lightly, 14F at the base and 4F and windy at the summit.  I was way under-dressed and ended up being cold all day - I don't think I got that cold once last year.  Even by early afternoon, it had only warmed up to 20F at the base and 9F (and still windy) at the summit, and although the snow flurries died down, the sun never broke through, at least before we left at 2:30 p.m.  At the very least I should have had my heavy long johns and UnderArmor base layer.  H has suggested that since I stress about what to wear so much I should keep a ski outfit journal, tracking the day's conditions, what I wore and if it was the right gear.  I'm going to do that this year and then maybe NEXT year, I can refer back to it and determine the correct layering for any kind of weather.

Looks good.  Just not nearly warm enough.

Despite my outfit woes (and for the record, H was cold too and said he should have worn an insulating layer), it was a pretty good day for early season.  I thought the snow had been vastly improved since last weekend - six inches goes a long way, apparently - although for some reason a whole bunch of little rocks started appearing at the top of Collins, making it hazardous to our ski bases.  It didn't get crowded until 10:30 a.m., and even so the parking lot never completely filled so the high traffic areas didn't start to get skied off until after 2 p.m.

There's not really any snow in the forecast for the next couple of days.  I guess we'll see how the conditions hold up.  And if I can manage to correctly dress for whatever the weather.

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