December 30, 2002

It's Starting to be Fernie Again

This was the first day since the hill opened that I really enjoyed myself on the slopes. Sure the bottom is still pretty ugly, but snow both yesterday and today has made a big improvement and there is at least hope of dodging the really evil bits. Up top the powder was fine and the turns pretty sweet. There are still lots of alders and other bush sticking up, but with plenty of soft loose snow, they just provide an amusing navigation puzzle. That doesn't mean there aren't more sinister things up high, such as the all but unavoidable rock field on the traverse to the top of Anaconda or the lurking rocks on the otherwise sweet Currie Chutes. Still the good finally far outweighs the bad.

I encountered a full coral at the Elk Chair, but otherwise didn't really have to wait for any lifts and even rode alone a couple of times. Traffic was sometimes a bit intense on exit routes like lower North Ridge or Dipsey (probably just more noticeable as everyone tried to use the same bits of snow), but off in the twigs it was pretty quiet.

It has been snowing all day and the lovely white stuff is still falling hard. Currie and Timber were completely open when I was there (including Corner Pocket), but when I arrived at the top of Bear a little while later, both upper Cedar and Lizard beyond Arrow were closed. I imagine we will awake to the booms of significant avalanche control work in the morning - an annoying, but still sweet sound. :-)

At 16:50 it is -4 C and snowing nicely at the house.

The powdery, but rather twiggy world of Cedar Ridge

Even the Puff trees were pretty good.

The way trees are supposed to be clothed - Shakey's acres and the top of White Pass.

The Surprise trees looked very tempting.

But this isn't the way to ski them. Note to self - go around the big green things.

The Concussion Chutes were very nice, but not without hazards as illustrated by these rocky predators who will once again be lurking below white camouflage tomorrow morning.

The skiing was good down to the gully in lower Currie Bowl, but you were then more or less forced onto Gilmar's Trail which was rather less than ideal.

Looking up Cedar Ridge