I headed out with Elia today to see how the mountain is holding up and to report back to you so you can make a well informed decision. And before I get started let me tell you that 70 degree temps is creating an organic situation out on the hill and things are changing from hour to hour!
We have a sign at the bottom of the Bluebird Express that says intermediate and expert skiers/riders only. It also says that some walking my be required. My experience is that both are true statements. If you are a beginner, do not go to the summit. I did not take my skis off today but I did opt to do a little grass and mud skiing as I am lazy. Rock (or should I say grass) skis and boards are recommended.
Enough doom and gloom. I had a really good time today! There is still some decent skiing out there. We started out on Freefall. I should have saved Freefall for last as that would have allowed the moguls to soften a little. Don’t get me wrong, they weren’t hard and in the sun they were fine. But there were several spots where there was a narrow ribbon of snow to negotiate and I had a hard time doing that with the vertical over there. So I power wedged through some of it. If you are NOT an expert skier, I would not go to the North Face this weekend.
The good news is that it is supposed to be a little cooler tonight and we have a full grooming crew out to put the hill back together, including a groom on Freefall. The moguls will be mowed but I think the product will be more skiable. And moguls will form quickly in these temps.
The next trail was Long John. There were about 4 spots on this trail that I probably should have walked. Elia just jumped over these spots and I pushed through, adding to my already dirty base! We went over to Carinthia and hit the Gulch, which is still a full park. I can’t imagine there are many parks this good left in the Northeast!
Nitro looked like a lot of fun. Most of the rails have been removed and several jumps still exist. It looked like a contour park and whether you are a park enthusiast or not, there is something for everyone. Just respect the folks jumping and I think this trail can easily be shared.
We finished Carinthia on Mineshaft/Inferno. I didn’t go fast enough down Mineshaft so I had to push but some people were making it across. Both Mineshaft and Inferno are free of park features. Well, the gigantic jump at the bottom of Inferno was still there. Tough Mudders….the snowmaking pond looked nice and warm – not a bit of ice on it!!
Our last run of the day was Ridge. I didn’t think Ridge would make it to the weekend line up and I was pleasantly surprised. You can get some nice turns in and then you have to follow the ribbon. Or if you are like a few brave souls, you can just ski right across the grass (lean back.) The bottom of Ridge had a lot of snow – shade is good!
Skiing by Cooper’s Junction, it looked pretty good. Dave says they will spin lift #16, the Season’s Double, so you can ski Copper’s. I would highly recommend this trail to beginners. You can even park at Sundance but please know up front that the lodge is closed. There will also be beginner terrain on Launch Pad (skiers left.) I haven’t checked all the websites but several ski areas in our region no longer have any beginner terrain….just saying!
In the base area, the team was putting together the pond skim. They started this morninig at 4 am and farmed snow from Beaver. Tents and other preparation for Reggaefest is in full swing!
So there you have it. Should you ski this weekend? Based on my report above, I hope you will be able to make the right choice for your skiing ability. Should you come up for Reggaefest, absolutely. This is one party that you won’t want to miss.
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