Monday, January 11, 2016

another alta day

Over the last week, Alta received twelve inches of snow, but only got two inches Friday night into Saturday.  We were curious about what the crowds would be like:  would people be so excited about the new snow that they would flock to the mountains or would they be like, "Meh, only two really new inches."  When we got up to the merge with Wasatch Boulevard, traffic had slowed up to a crawl and we were, of course, concerned.  Then (luckily) and a bunch of cars pulled off into Snowbird and we were pleased.  When we pulled into the Wildcat base lot, however, it really didn't seem that busy. The morning was cold, mostly sunny and absolutely gorgeous, with the sun-splashed peak of Baldy peeking out from the low clouds, the trees on the summit of Supreme looking like they'd been flocked and sparkling ice crystals in the air.  I really wish I'd taken a photo in the morning before the clouds moved in!

H was back on his telemark skis again so we made a plan to ski separately and meet at Alf's for an early lunch.  I first did a couple runs on Collins, which was still in the shade and cold, before moving to Sugarloaf where it was sunnier and warmer.  I did one run down Extrovert, but I didn't ski it very well, plus I nicked my ski on a rock, so I gave up on that lift and moved over to Supreme.  Both Challenger and No. 9 Express still had huge bumps, despite my hopes that the cats would have groomed them out.  I did a run on Sleepy Hollow (big bumps and hard-pack scrapes), did some groomer runs and then met H for an early lunch.

Out near Snowshoe Hill, after the clouds rolled in

The clouds moved in while we were in for lunch and when we went back out, it was unexpectedly spitting snow.  We split up again, with the plan to do a couple of Sugarloaf runs, then laps on Supreme until we met back up again.  I managed three Catherine's Area runs:  two in Sunset, one along the rope line in So Long, then ducking into the low gate and finding some really good snow in the trees there.  Catherine's Area actually skiing quite well, tracked out but deep in places (enough for me to occasionally wish I had my Rossignols) and still soft and light.  I had a chair ride with a kid who worked at Collins Grill.  I followed him into Catherine's but while he took a high gate into the Spiny Chutes/Back Forty area, I went further into Sunset.  On the run-out back to the lift, we came out at the same time and he saw me and grinned, and asked how my run went.  After that I tried a line through the trees between No. 9 and Sleepy Hollow (which was hugely bumped up) and then continued out through the lower trees.  I also did a swooping run through the gate at the bottom of Rock N' Roll.

After my last run through Catherine's, I found H waiting for me at the base of Supreme.  It was around 2:45 p.m. and his legs were shot from a full day on his tele skis.  Quite frankly, after three Catherine's Area runs, mine were shot too.  We skied out through Sunnyside and called it a pretty good day.

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