There’s nothing more gratifying in a ski town than the sound of snow falling silently from the sky. Shhh…. do you hear that? Ahhh… nothing.
Flakes were falling sky as I laid my first tracks into about 3 inches of fresh this morning. Finally, after what has been an escalating anticipation of a powder day, new snow has landed on our mountain and people couldn’t be happier. I heard the natives whooping their usual bird calls and shouts of enjoyment and our guests a showing off wide, toothy smiles as they drift their way from edge to edge. Life in Steamboat is good today and only getting better.
Now I’m not going to say today’s snow is like butter, but… it’s like butter. And the kind of creamy, smooth butter you have no guilt about smearing shamelessly over a warm slice of toast. As I whipped my skis back-n-forth across the hillside, my legs couldn’t help but feel relaxed as I slid my way down. The groomed runs were especially carefree and the loft of the puffy snow gave my skis enough rise to gently float me over any crust that might have lived below. The snow felt spongy and secure under foot as I allowed my legs to simply drift on auto-pilot.
Venturing over to slightly less manipulated terrain like Hurricane, I did sense a bit of “crunch” below my edges and my pace began to slow. The fresh flakes were enough to give my sticks a bit of cushion but I’d be lying if I said it was bottomless. On the whole, runs like this are in great shape for this time of year. But a bit more caution might be advised as you begin to explore the blue-black and black diamond runs. As the snow continues to accumulate, I’d guess that this might just be one of those perfect days that the conditions get better as the day wears on. So don’t slack in your intention to make turns today.
So as you step your feet into ski boots, snowboard boots, or telemark gear and make your way to the slopes; walk confidently. Because today is another example of why life in Steamboat is just darn good. Enjoy!
Dave Wittlinger, Alpine skier