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After getting my dirty reggae fix at yesterday's 'Bud Light Rocks The Boat' free concert, I woke up this morning rip-roaring to rip.  And as sure as the Irish tides keep churning, so goes the snow in Steamboat.  Spring is on hold for the time being and the skies over Steamboat are DUMPING!

The Luck O' the Irish must have been with me today as I coincidentally got to load the "Golden Gondola" (painted all gold, in celebration of our 50 Year Anniversary) for a St. Patrick's Day ride to the top.

 

The honest truth about this morning's conditions is that the visibility is a bit milky.  While the newly fallen snow has added a nice layer of softness to the underlying crust, the light is a bit flat, especially at higher elevations.  The cloud system over Mt. Werner right now seems locked and loaded to puke a handful of inches of fresh powder in the coming hours.  Now, in mid-March, that's a blessing not a tragedy.  It's one of those days when in just the amount of time it takes to ride the chairlift your parka is covered with what seems like a half inch of powdery goodness.  But while skiing down High Noon to West Side I was very cautious not to ski too fast.  Keeping your knees bent to absorb the undulation below your skis is a wise idea on a day like today. 

To describe the quality of the snow today I would use the word "creamy."  After all, "buttery" is so over-used (ha).  But honestly, carving through today's fresh top layer gave my legs a smooth and gently flowing feel.  Like plowing through the center of a Long John from Gondola Joe's (if one could only ski donuts), each turn had a forgiving softness to it while at the same time the packed powder below held my edges nicely.  Visibility on the lower mountain runs of Vagabond and Concentration seemed a bit clearer.  This is where one could ski with a bit more tempo and more confidence in spotting the terrain below. 

All in all, this was a great way to spend another St. Paddy's Day morning in 'the Boat.'  Irish eyes are smiling and Mother Nature has done her best to give us another blast of snow to ensure our spring skiing is nothing short of incredible.  Though I saw a lot of short sleeves and sun hats at yesterday's concert, you can retire those for thick winter jackets and insulated helmets once again.  At least for today that is.

 

Enjoy today's "Pot O' Gold" that is fresh snow in Steamboat.

 

David Wittlinger, Alpine Skier

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