Craig's Report - January 30, 2006

Mushy Monday

As promised a fresh blanket of white fell overnight, but as threatened the precipitation at the based turned to the much dreaded rain at about breakfast this morning. For much of the mountain this meant that the weekend�s powdery treats were replaced with steaming bowls full of thick Griz Gumbo (TM). The rain line seemed to move around, but was roughly centered at or just below the Bear�s Den and you could ski almost to the bottom of Cedar Ridge in pretty good snow. It was way too stiff to meet my criteria for powder and seemed to require altogether too much work after the delights of Friday and especially Saturday (I opted for skinny skis in the bush on Sunday), but if less immediately spoiled, I probably would have given it a pretty good grade.

Once through the rain line, it became a sticky business indeed. Still I much preferred wallowing in the heavy goop to the rough ride where it had packed down. It wasn�t icy, just lumpy and bumpy.

There might have been really good snow up on White Pass, for it certainly was falling hard enough, but I would have needed downlook radar to have had any idea what I was going over, running into or falling off of on my one run down Shakey�s Acres. Things cleared around the traverse to Anaconda and to my surprise it was open as was all of Currie below it, although I heard in the locker room later that it has closed shortly after my trip down it. The lower part of Currie was notable for the sheer number of freshies available in boot deep stuff roughly the consistency of day old porridge.

In addition to Currie, Lizard was closed right up to the Bear Chair line where it crosses Ballet and only Cedar Ridge was open in Cedar. Timber and Siberia seemed to be completely open.

Of course it was wet and after a couple of hours my gloves felt like they weighed a couple of kilos a piece as I headed up the Timber Chair for my final run. By this time it was becoming quite windy at the top of Timber, but a climb up Siberia Ridge was rewarded with some of the nicest snow of the day on the upper part of Morning Glory. The bottom was of course more sludge.

As I was writing this, as brief hail storm passed over the house, which was accompanied by a flash of lightning and peal of thunder. Certainly not common at the end of January. At 16:45 it is back to just raining at the house, with a temperature of 1C.

Sodden bottom, but white top

Somewhat stiff, but still fairly pleasant snow on Cedar Ridge.

Looking back up at Cedar Ridge from the bottom.

Looking straight up Cedar Bowl from the same spot. The Cruiser cat track is at the left, with lower Cedar Main (which I am pretty certain was closed) at the right.

Peeking out of the trees at the Boomerang chair and run.

Looking down hill from the same spot. (Taking the camera out was something of a pain with sodden gloves).

There certainly is no problem with coverage on Heartland this year.

Part of �3� of 1,2,3 was accessible from Anaconda. The snow here was okay, but firmer than I expected, perhaps due to wind.

Another double shot from the same position, this time looking at Anaconda. The snow in the trees to the left was probably a better option as it seemed softer when I cut in from here.

The upper part of Morning Glory was quite nice. Beware of partially buried trees. A number have fallen this year and can be lurking where you least expect them.