Day 16 Fri 21/12. Alta 3100m (47170 total)

I don’t want to jinx it but things are looking promising – light snow falls Sat into Sun then one last storm Christmas eve. Great sunny morning and with no fresh snow for several days no need to rush up. LOTS of snow blowing off the ridgelines so obviously in for a fair bit of wind. Actually quite warm when I got to the car park and thought I may have overdressed but the amount of wind on the chairs justified it. Groomers were quite hard packed but still pretty good. Even though no snow in the immediate forecast all the standard avalanche prone areas were closed which I thought was a bitover the top till I saw that there had been a slide in Ballroom which had run over the traverse.

After a couple of runs off Sugraloaf headed over to Supreme which was less wind affected. Ventured off piste to check that snow was skiable then did a couple of runs into Catherines Area, which requires a short hike and a rather intersting traverse (which grabbed one of my poles the second time through). Pretty challenging in some spots and sweet soft dry snow in others – much more enjoyable than when I tried this last December. Still seems a fair bit of work for not a huge return but I think I need several more runs in here to get a handle on the best lines to take through here that maximise open skiable slopes and minimize tight trees and traversing to dodge cliff lines.

By the time I headed over to Collins and Baldy Brews for the afternoon coffee the sun was already below the ridgelines in spots. Wind was really picking up and there were some amazing displays of wind blown snow over the ridgetops. Felt like I was going to get blown off the chair and hit by a wave of blowing snow getting off. Last trip down was alternating wind drifts and rock hard. Definitely time to quit for the day.

Should finally get up to date with photos again by tomorrow.

 

Oh, and I notice the world didn’t end. ¬†Oh well, will have to do those things I was putting off after all.

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