April 30, 2017

55" Week to Close Out April!

Andrea dropping off the backside of Toledo Bowl - Saturday April 29th

It snowed 55 inches between Monday afternoon and Friday afternoon. 

The Alta-Collins snow depth surpassed 160" for the first time since 2011.

It snowed 55 inches between Monday afternoon and Friday afternoon!!! (worth repeating)

Six straight days of powder skiing to close out April. I'm going to have to get some thoughts down comparing 2011 to 2017, but this has definitely been our dreamiest season ever.

Tuesday to Friday was "Emma Week" so I'm lumping the photos I have together...

Tuesday April 25

The forecast called for 6-12" on Monday and through the night. By the time we got up to Alta after work on Tuesday, it had snowed 25" in 24 hours. Truly remarkable overproduction! With avalanche danger due to the storm snow fairly high, we stuck to an area we know well - Emma Ridge. We skied a south-facing lap, then one into Silver Fork's upper bowl, and then one more south-facing one to finish up. Powder days are here again!

Wednesday April 26

Solo dawn patrol - back to Emma Ridge for 2 laps before work. Conditions were even a touch better than the night before.

Thursday April 27

Another 12" storm on top of Monday/Tuesday's snow. We replicated the same exact tour as Tuesday evening - it was deeper and lighter! What a freaking week!

Friday April 28

"Slept in" since it was blustery and Andrea was planning to take a day off to rest for the weekend. I almost did the same thing, but 4" fell overnight and then another 7" came down during the day. I had to take advantage, and I'm glad I did. Another deja vu cold smoke two-lapper off Emma Ridge.

Saturday April 29

We were planning on heading to Cardiac Bowl, but it looked a little wind hammered, so we ended up dropping into Cardiff Fork and then skied 5 laps in the Holy Toledo zone. Absolute hero snow!

Sunday April 30

With the sun out yesterday, the only light, dry snow was going to be on the higher pure North facing aspects. Alta has been closed to touring all week due to the avalanche conditions, but the ropes were dropped today so we decided to ski laps in the Devil's Castle zone. Conditions were as good as you could ever hope for at the end of April. Hell, it would have been great powder in January! 

What an amazing week. Now we'll probably have to transition to "true" spring skiing, although you never know if another storm might drop into the Wasatch over the next couple weeks.

April 23, 2017

Alta "opens" and Sunrise Superior

One of my favorite of this season - Andrea climbing the East ridge of Mt Superior on April 22nd

Ahhh what a great week - a return to winter! A couple midweek storms and then a beautiful weekend. The mid-mountain depth at Alta sits at 124" as of Sunday evening... we are looking good for an extended spring season...

Wednesday April 19

Upper LCC got 7" overnight and since Alta had closed their lifts a few days earlier, that's where EVERYONE went skiing. It felt great to be making soft turns in cold snow. We skied off the East side of the Rustler ridge, then back up to the top of Collins and down the main run.

Friday April 21

I had to be downtown for an early meeting but it snowed 9" overnight so we were skiing one way or another. We went back to Alta since that was the easiest and quickest access to good turns (sometimes the low hanging fruit is delicious). A couple laps off West Rustler was a great start to the day.

Saturday April 22

We watched the webcams on Friday and it seemed like while the sun peaked out occasionally, it didn't come out full bore until the afternoon, and never hit the main/upper part of Mt Superior directly. Given it was probably our last chance to ski the SE face of Superior in powder conditions this season, we decided to take a chance and give it a go. Out hunch was right on the money and the upper 2000' of the face wasn't affected by the sun at all - it was 8-10" of soft, stable powder. As good as you can hope for. The bottom part of the apron had some sun crust but who cares?! We caught an amazing sunrise, had the mountain all to ourselves, and skied it in great conditions. What a great morning!

We were back at the car before 8am and Andrea headed down to the valley for her last Bioventures class. I stuck around and headed up to Mt Baldy... Main Chute had been skied a lot over the past few days, but the SE winds had filled it back in, and I skied that in fairly excellent conditions as well.

Jake off the top





I never get tired of this view

Gonna be a while before all this melts out :-)

Main Chute is SO WIDE this year!

We took Sunday off from skiing... looks like we have several more storms in the forecast for this week! Don't stop believing!