Craig's Report - January 18, 2008

Pleasantly Packed

I had not been on the hill for a couple of days and during this time we have experienced a nasty snow drought, so I was sure the slopes would be well packed, but uncertain about the how pleasant the resulting experience would be. To my surprise it was quite delightful with a variety of soft or loose packed runs and most mogul runs smoothed and tamed by a very nice wind sift. I even managed a few lovely turns in undisturbed old snow, but one had to probe pretty deeply into the depths to find any of that.

The slider boards were all green except for the Face lift, Saddles and strangely Siberia Ridge. The only negative I encountered was that the wind that provided the nice sift had a bitter bite even though the temperatures were not that low. Chilly enough to be somewhat uncomfortable, but hardly frigid.

On Wednesday I took my first trip to Kimberley in what must be over a decade. It pretty much still fit my memory, with enormous wide and long cruising terrain on the front side and a mix of blues and blacks on the back that are largely differentiated by how mean their moguls are. They have some areas gladed into the dense forest that would have been a delight with some boot high powder on a soft base, but unfortunately a rough crusty underpinnings with some loose on top was what was on tap. Some of these areas could also have benefited from a bit more base as well, although the actual runs all seemed to be well covered.

What was quite remarkable was how empty the place was. We did two full runs before encountering anyone at all on the backside. True it was a pretty chilly day, but given the lack of wind, probably no worse than it was here today. All in all, it is quite a different hill from Fernie and while not quite my cup of tea, probably a better option for some folks.

At 17:30 it is -6 C and overcast at the house with the promise of some new snow.

Looking down Weasel (Bow Trees).

Near the top of Red Tree.

Wallaby, which like all the groomers I was on, was in fine shape.

Looking across Cedar Ridge from below the Boom chair and with the top of the Bear Express just visible between the trees in the centre.

A view of Cedar Bowl from the same location.

Somewhere around Tom's Run in Currie Bowl. The snow was a bit lumpy up here, but down in the chutes below was perfect steep carving snow.

Across the hill from the same spot.

Looking up one of the steep chutes at the bottom of Tom's Run.