Good morning from a grey-jay morning in the Boat with surprisingly good conditions to report. I have to admit that when I looked out of my window at the mountain first thing today, I really had to motivate to put my ski boots on for skiing in the cloudy conditions. I assumed that the mountain would reveal firm snow and it would be a quick morning of skiing. Much to our surprise, the groomers were in absolutely excellent condition offering us nice and soft carvable turns.
The fresh flakes from Monday’s storm left us with a layer of dense snow that I anticipated would set up to be a bit firm first thing today, but with slightly warmer temperatures on the mountain last night, it worked out to be a perfect combo in keeping the snow nice and soft out there. We started the day off enjoying much solitude in the Sundown area of the mountain as there were hardly any skiers to be seen anywhere. There was a very thick cloud at the highest elevations of the mountain that made it hard to see, but the snow was so soft and predictable that we had no problem navigating the corduroy beneath our feet.
All aspects and elevations were skiing great today as the manicured corduroy was very consistent out there on every run we chose. Since there hasn’t been much sun in the last few days, the snow hasn’t been affected by any melt/freeze and has only been softened by the new snow. The moguls and trees looked like they should be fun today, but we kept our morning runs to the groomers as they were just too good to leave.
After quite a few runs from Sundown, we made our way over to Storm Peak to see how things were looking on the other side of the mountain. Conditions were plenty soft there, as well, but we did notice the wind and cold showing a bit more over there, but still comfortable skiing in the cloud cover. Having the proper goggles will really help you out today seeing in the flat light conditions. Low-light specific lenses are so worth the money and will help you have a better ski day in these conditions.
The thick cloud cover was pretty isolated to the top of the mountain, so we decided to finish the morning off checking out some lower mountain options where we could see a bit better. We found plenty more soft snow down low while enjoying views of the Yampa Valley and just a bit of sun trying to poke through the clouds. Every run was a blast with predictable turns and very few other skiers on the runs.
While the skiing was fun today, I always try to take in the visuals around the mountain while we play. Many of the trees have that frosty layer that I just can’t take my eyes off; they just look surreal. Also, many of the chairlifts on Storm Peak, Sundown and Sunshine have a rime cover on them that is fun to look at. Rime is frost that is formed on cold objects by the rapid freezing of water vapor in clouds and fog. Check it out!
Pick of the mountain today is Ted’s Ridge: It got missed on the grooming report today, but had plenty of fresh corduroy on it at 10 am this morning. The snow was perfect for carving and with no one else on the run, the turns were fast!
Tomorrow promises some sun for us and very comfortable temperatures, so quite a change from today. We are looking at a quick storm on Thursday for some more freshies, so this week will be quite the mixed bag of conditions. But no matter the weather, it is always fun on the mountain, so grab your gear and get up here!
Have a great day on the mountain.
Kevin Olsen, Alpine skier