Craig's Report - January 19, 2006


With no significant snow for the last few days, the hill has been able to open some additional terrain and indeed I was able to ski in all five bowls today, as long as you don�t take that too literally in the case of Currie. The upper parts of Cedar and Lizard as well as almost all of Currie remain closed and I would imagine will remain so until they can deal with the cornices on the ridges and that will probably require good helicopter flying conditions.

Lizard from Tower Six road down and Cedar below the Boomerang Chair access opened yesterday and I think Anaconda Glades might have opened the day before. A lot of snow had accumulated since these areas were last open, but the skiing experience was one of boot deep slightly stiff snow that sliced and diced quite nicely, although for the most part I wouldn�t call it powder. By today most of this terrain had been transformed into soft pack, but some freshies were still available, especially if you ventured further afield. Skirting the edge of Fish on Red Tree was particularly nice today, but reaching it involved a fair climb diagonally across Snake Ridge. Climbing in the bowl itself would put you in closed terrain.

What is truly great is how the new base depth leaves things like KC Chutes not only skiable, but relatively wide open. Everywhere you look, alders and brush have disappeared leaving uncluttered slopes and glades. We are at that blissful Fernie point where base, at least on the upper mountain, is no longer an issue and on any given day, all that matters is whatever happened in the previous couple of days.

Lower on the mountain the effects of last weekend's wet weather are still evident, although some snow arrived Monday night to soften things a bit. Off piste stuff that hadn�t been skied has a non breaking ice crust, which hopefully has enough patches of the new snow lying around to let you trace turns through. The groomed runs tend to be firm, but at least the ones I was on did not seem truly icy.

At 17:30 it is -1 C at the house and overcast.

Standard issue shot of Timber Bowl from the top of the Timber chair, with Knot Chutes and the White Pass chair in the back ground.

There was even some sun today. This is the beginner area at the base of the hill with the Elk run at the upper right.

Apart from those really big, not to mention hard, shrubs, Sunnyside is almost completely wide open.

This picture probably doesn�t capture it, but there is a truly impressive amount of avalanche residue in the bottom of Fish Bowl.

Red Tree from the bottom.

The gully between Easter Bowl and Dancer is almost filled in places with debris from that borderline class four slide that came down Dancer.

Looking up into the forbidden terrain of Currie Bowl from the Anaconda glades. I must admit that as I teetered on this steep tree lined slope, I wondered if it was really a good place to be looking through a view finder. While not firm, the slope was well packed in places and a major slide was a real possibility if you fell.

The only exit from Anaconda was down Trespass Trail, which was not only signed, but roped until near the end of Bootleg Glades. The must have run out of signs though, for this was what was in the last main chute of Bootleg. I found it amusing, but not so much the many tracks that still snaked down into the trees beyond it.

On Morning Glory with Mammoth Head in the background.

From the same place on Morning Glory, but this time looking down towards Falling Star.