I had barely come back from Jackson Hole that Tahoe was due for a 4ft storm. While temperatures were as low as ideal, they were low enough for 4ft to reach most Tahoe resorts in 2 days. It could have been more as it was raining hard in Squaw. This fucked up all the snow on saturday, and the poor people who were there got soaked at the bottom while the top of Squaw was closed due to winds.|
David happened to be visiting and was going to Squaw, so I joined him. I did convince him not to go skiing saturday, as I knew from the forecast, conditions would be horrible. David had booked a room in Squaw, so we checked in and I made plans with him to go to Northstar the next day since the wind forecast made it very likely for most of Squaw to be closed (Alpine was unsure, but they were going to close their access road for snow safety, which they indeed did the next morning at 07:45).
101*|when we arrived, most of squaw was closed, and it was raining hard at the bottom, as expected
The pouring rain did turn to snow overnight, and we got a good dump, we cleaned the car up and drove to Northstar:
Most of Squaw ended up staying closed due to winds as I expected, but Northstar was opened, although they opened the backside a bit late (11:00). The backside was good (the frontside was very nice too, but way too flat, it being flatstar and all). Lookout mountain would have been awesome if it weren't for the fact that the bottom was super thin (like maybe an inch or two on top of rocks). Lookout is supposed to be great for trees, but it was actually unsafe to go, so after a few runs, I went back to backside for the rest of the day, which had plenty of deep powder. Sawmill Glade, totally on the left of the map, was also an awesome powder stash that many people missed :)
gondola up from the lower base
small line for powder runs :)
until the backside opened, the comstock line got a bit out of hand
more whee :)
we then got more snow
when the backside opened, it was sweet, but the line got ridiculous quickly
so after 2 runs, I took the rope tow to lookout
So while northstar wasn't the steepest terrain, and lookout mountain wasn't really usable, I still got to snowboard nice powder most of the day. People at Squaw got nothing but KT22, and Heavenly managed to open ski (great), but it closed 2H later for winds. I think Kirkwood was the only better choice that day, just out of reach for where I was.
On day 2, I gave Squaw a chance, and hoped that they would open the top. They did start by 10:00, and by noon, most things had opened, but the conditions were pretty whiteout, so you really had to know where you were and where you were going. But even though it was monday in appalling conditions (cold, wind, and viz), I was surprised by how many people were there and how quickly things got tracked out despite the viz.
sometimes we had a bit of sun
Either way, I did get two very good runs out of KT22, the snow was ridiculous (almost too much, yes, there is such a thing :) ), but sadly while I did try to track the lifts as they opened (and it was hard because the squaw mobile app didn't work well), things got tracked out everywhere pretty quickly (I even hiked up broken arrow while the lift was broken (ha!) and the run down was nice, but not nice open powder). While they weren't as steep, I got more nice runs at Alpine the previous day.
I was in line for KT22 at 08:15, and the line was already long :)
nice snow off KT22
oh shit, the line is going to suck
the funitel opened by 10:00
ride down to Shirley Lake
after a few rides on Shirley, I hiked up to broken arrow
Day #3, I had to take the 08;00 Squaw Creek shuttle to Squaw just to take the Squaw to Alpine shuttle in the other direction and barely go to Alpine by 09:00. Alpine had some very good runs in the morning, I hiked up the ridge from Summit chair, and it was a huge field of super nice untouched powder. I'm an idiot for not having immediately taken chairs to lap it again, when I came back 2H later it was pretty tracked out :-
the ride down from Red Dog back to Squaw Creek, where I was sleeping, was quite good :)
yeah, snow waiting for me :)
Sadly the Scott Chair was broken, turns out during snow safety, some dynamite blew up too close to a pole, and they had to get the chair revalidated by an engineer to make sure it was safe, but I found out soon later that I could take the lakeview chair and hike up to the top of Scott. That gave me 2 really awesome runs (although it's a long way back for the next run, one time I ended up on a snowmobile path close to the road and barely made it back to a super slow green chair to get back to the base level):
I didn't take any more pictures that day as the snow arrived and the visibility got quite poor, but the snow was quite good and I was able to score a lot of powder in different places (including lakeview) until 14:00 or so when the lowering temps started to freeze up all the powder and ruining it :(
I ended up stopping around 14:30 when the vis was blizzard like and thoe snow was getting worse by the minute, and reminisced about the great snow I had gotten earlier that day :)