Monthly Archives: April 2010

Bluebird Powder

24hr Snow 5 cm 7 Day Snow 80 cm Snowbase 379 cm
Alpine Temp -8 °C Valley Temp +4 °C Conditions Pow / Soft Pack

Bluebird Powder Morning

What a beautiful view to wake up too :D

It was another fantastic day to be skiing Whistler. The overnight snowfall was reported as 4cm, but it was deeper than that where I skied. I ended up spending my whole day on Harmony and Symphony chairs and had numerous deep freshies. My first run was KC Roll, very nice. It is in the sunshine at the top of this photo.

Lower Harmony Region

Next, we hit up Robertson’s and I was first into the clear cut far skier’s left. I have only ever skied this area a few times, but have loved it every time. I really must make a note to do it more often. Steeper than you think, and has always been deep, good snow.

Sun Bowl was great, but the next pitch onto the cat track was even better. Symphony zone is general was good, if only it was a little steeper.

Flute Low Roll

That was a sick run down Flute Low Roll, here are some photos of the hike etc followed by a short video of me. I am just beaten to the final pitch by a snowboarder who does what snowboarders do best – take a wide line!

Flute Summit

Flute Bowl

Nicole

Flute North Bowl

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Another Sick Powder Day in April

24hr Snow 19 cm 7 Day Snow 79 cm Snowbase 378 cm
Alpine Temp -8 °C Valley Temp +5 °C Conditions Pow / Soft Pack

Ruby Bowl

What a season! So many good days that I’ve lost count. Our cumulative snowfall so far is up to 1432cm which is apparently the 2nd snowiest season on record :)

The coverage is incredible (duh), for example the entrance to Diamond Bowl in Spankys. Normally there are 3 main ways into it, today I skied a line basically directly between the right and middle entrances – an area marked by cliff signs and generally, well a cliff. Today it was a steep-ish (but not overly) line full of powder and only the tip of one rock showing.

Here is a photo of some guy doing a crazy line at the bottom of Ruby Bowl. Wasn’t much of a line, as you can see in the video below. His friend was even crazier, but unfortunately my camera was away as I thought for sure he would back out and ski the backside of the rock.

Crazy

Lift lines are non-existent, so my legs were TIRED by the end of the day :D

The snow was a bit wind affected in places, with a slight crust and releasing in slabs. Other places it was close to perfect soft powder, which allowed for full confidence to charge your line. I really enjoyed my runs down ‘Playland’ and ‘Shredder’.

Finally, here is a video of Nicole going for it on ‘Gummy Bear’ than the bottom part of ‘The Roll’. In between is the guy doing the crazy line.

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Sunny Easter Sunday

24hr Snow 1 cm 7 Day Snow 103 cm Snowbase 368 cm
Alpine Temp -5 °C Valley Temp +3 °C Conditions Pow / Soft Pack

Flute Shoulder

April = Easter = Powder

What a Easter we are having! So much good snow and today the sun came out. The calmer weather allowed the alpine on Whistler mountain to be opened after being stormed in for the last few days. Peak, Harmony and Symphony were revealed in all their glory. I realize the photos in this post don’t look like it, but it was sunny 90% of the time.

Whistler Peak

Harmony backside

The crowds from yesterday had disappeared (on Blackcomb at least where I was skiing onto the chairs as a single through the main maze at 9:30-10am). I took the P2P over to Whistler where the lift lines were larger but only around 5-10 minutes.

In the afternoon Steve and I hiked Flute, my first time for 2010, and had a great run down Flute Shoulder. It was pretty cut up, but is a favorite line of mine, so I stuck to it, even though there was fresher areas around. It didn’t disappoint, as usual :D

I was really impressed with the coverage on Piccolo, it normally has quite a few exposed rocks.

Piccolo

Lastly, here is a video of Steve on Upper Grand Finale followed by Me on Flute Shoulder. You can see Whistler Bowl behind Steve, and my line is visible in the first photo – basically in the middle – lookers right of the main rock section.

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Busy Easter Saturday

24hr Snow 26 cm 7 Day Snow 120 cm Snowbase 383 cm
Alpine Temp -7 °C Valley Temp +4 °C Conditions Pow / Soft Pack

Line up for Fresh Tracks

I remembered I had a couple of Fresh Tracks tickets, which finishes on Monday, so I figured what better day to get up Whistler Mountain early than on Easter Saturday with 25cm of powder on a base over 3.5 meters :)

We arrived around 6:15am (upload starts at 7:30 but the early bird gets the worm – or powder in this case) and were about 10th in line, the above photo was taken around 7:15 by which time the line was pretty big. By being first in line, we were able to grab a quick breakfast in the Roundhouse before the ropes were dropped and the day began. If you are at the back, by the time you eat breakfast the first ‘normal’ chairs are reaching the top by the time you finish – therefore you don’t get any real advantage to skiing the goods (unless you pre-plan to skip the free breakfast).

As for the skiing, once again it was fantastic – the snow was perfect and about a foot deep :D We managed 6 awesome powder runs before 11am, when we decided to grab a quick hot chocolate before waiting in the line for Peak chair to open. That was a waste of time, as neither Peak nor Harmony chairs opened (I believe, we skied out around 1:30pm after being told the chances of them opening were slim to none).

Still, we had a great day, with plenty of face shots, so I finished the day with a smile on my face. Looking forward to the alpine opening tomorrow (fingers crossed).

Glacier chair on Blackcomb Mountain opened, and I think 7th Heaven did too.

The only real downside to the day was the crowds – it was BUSY at the lifts, but the runs were empty enough. It was made worse by not having the alpine lifts open. Below is a photo of the line up at Garbanzo chair, and there were more people behind me. It was either the biggest line I have seen there, or close to.

Garbanzo chair line up

A few people have been asking how the ski out conditions are, and today I skied out via Crabapple to Whistler village. The coverage is still REALLY good, much better than I expected. Not the best snow to ski (a little grabby) but it is still better than downloading.

Unfortunately, I forgot to charge the camera batteries, but I took this video just as it died. It was during our 2nd (maybe 3rd) chair of the day, and is of a few people skiing Upper Insanity under the Red chair.

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Update: Due to the epic snow base this year, WB has decided to extend the skiing on Whistler until April 25th – Blackcomb is still planned to remain open until May 24th. So there is still plenty of ‘spring’ skiing to be done. The Peak to Peak gondola will close on April 18th.

Good ‘Powder’ Friday

24hr Snow 13 cm 7 Day Snow 84 cm Snowbase 366 cm
Alpine Temp -6 °C Valley Temp +2 °C Conditions Pow / Soft Pack

Top of Excelerator

Happy Easter everyone!

Today was 50/50 – the snow is still fantastic, coverage is the best I have seen and there is plenty of powder to go around. The bad news was the high winds in the alpine along with poor visibility. I am not sure about Whistler mountain, but on Blackcomb, 7th Heaven chair closed early because of the winds and the T-bars never opened. Glacier chair and Spankys was open, and I heard Spankys was good, but didn’t end up checking it out. Instead, we stuck to below the wind level, and in the trees to maximize the visibility.

So we spent most of our time in Crystal zone, and had a great time. I even got shown a new line around CBC trees area – 2 nice powder stashes separated by a steep gully.

I should also mention it was pretty busy up until 1pm-ish. It was to be expected as it is Easter weekend, and we have had a lot of snow recently (and more in the forecast). Below is a photo of the line at Excelerator chair around 10am – quite big, and around 15 minutes wait time. The lines disappeared though, as I expect a number of people didn’t like the winds and vis issues.

Excelerator Chair