December 24, 2002

Making the Best of it

People are definitely resilient critters. One might think that there would be lots of gloomy faces and surly muttering at a ski hill which by Christmas could only operate a small portion of its upper terrain. In fact most folks I speak to seem to be taking it in stride and happy to have the skiing there is. It helps of course, that the upper mountain skiing is still pretty good. Some high traffic areas are getting slick and icy, but there is still lots of nice stuff about, particularly in Currie.

The down side is literally that, getting down. While I would guess that they are only getting about 1500 folks up on hill each day, compared to the nearly 6000 from one day last Christmas season, that still severely taxes the download capacity of the Timber Chair, which I believe is limited to 400 folks or less per hour. The result has apparently been some pretty fierce end of day lines.

The alternative is to ski down as far as you can and then walk. The ski hill has been working overtime making snow and actually trucking it up the Timber bowl cat track to make a snow road out. This now extends down to the top of Meadow and about halfway up Meadow from the bottom, which leaves a fairly short walk. I am told they hope to have it linked up by Boxing Day. My daughter and I took this route out today and it was pretty reasonable, but might not stand up well to a lot of traffic if mother nature does not supply a freshener.

There was even a little bit of new snow up top today and it was snowing lightly. Flakes have been falling at the base too, but so lightly as to have left virtually no discernable accumulation. The weather reports are suggesting the possibility of flurries over the next few days, but don't seem to hold out much hope for the much needed big storm.

At 15:05 it is -7 C at the house with just the odd, very rare, flake floating by.

Up high it actually looks like winter. This is Currie Bowl from near the top of 123.

Getting down can be a problem though. This line up to ride the Timber Chair down was was fairly short at noon, but I have heard horror stories about the end of day lines.

One, Two, Three again.

Upper Heartland was a bit slick in spots, but overall not too bad.

Looking down Diamond Back - not a good option.

Time to walk. Run grooming the hard way.