Marc's Public Blog - Skiing / Snowboarding / Snow


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This is a collection of my blog entries about snowboarding.
You can find all the pictures I've taken here, and read below for the more recent trips that I have recorded in blog entries:

Table of Content for snow:

More pages: April 2017 March 2017 February 2017 January 2017 December 2016 March 2016 February 2016 January 2016 December 2015 November 2015 April 2015 March 2015 December 2014 April 2014 March 2014 February 2014 January 2014 April 2013 March 2013 February 2013 December 2012 April 2012 March 2012 February 2012 March 2011 February 2011 December 2010 April 2010 March 2010 February 2010 December 2009 March 2009 February 2009 December 2008 April 2008 February 2008 January 2008 December 2007 April 2007 March 2007 February 2007 December 2006 April 2006 March 2006 February 2006 December 2005 March 2005 February 2005 January 2005 November 2004 April 2004 March 2004 February 2004



2016/03/23 Very Dry Powder Day at Kirkwood
π 2016-03-23 00:00 in Snow
15 inches in 24h, and very dry snow for a change, without a huge wind to pack down that snow and ruin the powder. That was not the biggest snowfall of the year, but it was the best powder I had had this year, thanks to Arturo to getting us there and being my snowboard buddy :)




things still got tracked quickly...
things still got tracked quickly...





uuumh, this was less snow than I expected. I guess high temps have gotten the ridge clear of snow :-/
uuumh, this was less snow than I expected. I guess high temps have gotten the ridge clear of snow :-/

I hiked up to there, but turned out it wasn't really worth it. Oh well...
I hiked up to there, but turned out it wasn't really worth it. Oh well...

then I got my board caught between those 2 trees, fell forward and could not get back up with the 45 degree slope to free my board from the small tree. It took both my poles and a lot of effort to get back up straight and unhook my board...
then I got my board caught between those 2 trees, fell forward and could not get back up with the 45 degree slope to free my board from the small tree. It took both my poles and a lot of effort to get back up straight and unhook my board...

Arturo then made the right call to go for the backside as it was opening. Turns out we had 6 awesome runs, 3 in fawn ridge, by the ski boundary




not steep, but good snow
not steep, but good snow

we met Elaine, she tried to trick us into climbing 99 steps. Instead we got great powder in fawn ridge with little effort :)
we met Elaine, she tried to trick us into climbing 99 steps. Instead we got great powder in fawn ridge with little effort :)

tow rope was running
tow rope was running



snowboarded back to the car
snowboarded back to the car

Thanks to Arturo, great to meet Elaine there, awesome day.

See more images for Very Dry Powder Day at Kirkwood
2016/03/06 3 days in Tahoe for a Big Storm: Northstar, Squaw, and Alpine
π 2016-03-06 00:00 in Snow
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
gondola up from the lower base

small line for powder runs :)
small line for powder runs :)

whee
whee

until the backside opened, the comstock line got a bit out of hand
until the backside opened, the comstock line got a bit out of hand

more whee :)
more whee :)



we then got more snow
we then got more snow

when the backside opened, it was sweet, but the line got ridiculous quickly
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 after 2 runs, I took the rope tow to lookout





sometimes we had a bit of sun
sometimes we had a bit of sun

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.
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 :)
I was in line for KT22 at 08:15, and the line was already long :)


nice snow off KT22
nice snow off KT22

oh shit, the line is going to suck
oh shit, the line is going to suck

the funitel opened by 10:00
the funitel opened by 10:00

ride down to Shirley Lake
ride down to Shirley Lake


after a few rides on Shirley, I hiked up to broken arrow
after a few rides on Shirley, I hiked up to broken arrow


headwall opened
headwall opened


the ride down from Red Dog back to Squaw Creek, where I was sleeping, was quite good :)
the ride down from Red Dog back to Squaw Creek, where I was sleeping, was quite good :)

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 :-



yeah, snow waiting for me :)
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 :)

2016/03/01 A bit of Powder at Jackson Hole
π 2016-03-01 00:00 in Snow
After not too great conditions at Taos Mountain, Arturo drove us to Jackson Hole (13H drive) to enjoy some powder that was supposed to fall by just before we arrived. In real life, it was only an inch or so and the 7 inches that were supposed to have fallen just 2 days prior had already iced up :(
As a result, the day we arrived wasn't that great, I actually managed to injure my knee from repetitive bouncing on icy bumps. The next day, we got a fresh 3-4 inches and that made things better. Some parts of the mountain were still pretty poor (icy) but I found some spots where the powder had stayed and was reasonably good. We also found some untouched powder runs that had to be paid with pretty bad bottoms. We took a ride back down to the condo area in a mostly untouched powder field, and the bottom was also not fun, but eh, nothing's free :)

Jackson Hole is a great mountain, I can only imagine how good it must be on a real powder day. And boo for global warming causing most mountains to almost instantly ice up to crud a day or two after each snow fall now :(


we were in the clouds half the time with limited viz
we were in the clouds half the time with limited viz

some stupid guy photobombed many of my pictures :)
some stupid guy photobombed many of my pictures :)

nice view when the clouds were gone
nice view when the clouds were gone






ski boot tree
ski boot tree

I tried to teach Arturo to use poles, it was hard :)
I tried to teach Arturo to use poles, it was hard :)





For out last run, we went to north Hoback, the top was pretty good, the bottom was ice unfortunately, but great views on the way down:

those people were working way too hard for their icy snow :)
those people were working way too hard for their icy snow :)



After 2 days, I decided to call it a day though, as the next day was only going to go downhill (ice again) and my knee needed a bit of recovery (also Tahoe was going to get a monster dump 3 days later, so I had to get home for that :)

See more images for A bit of Powder at Jackson Hole

More pages: April 2017 March 2017 February 2017 January 2017 December 2016 March 2016 February 2016 January 2016 December 2015 November 2015 April 2015 March 2015 December 2014 April 2014 March 2014 February 2014 January 2014 April 2013 March 2013 February 2013 December 2012 April 2012 March 2012 February 2012 March 2011 February 2011 December 2010 April 2010 March 2010 February 2010 December 2009 March 2009 February 2009 December 2008 April 2008 February 2008 January 2008 December 2007 April 2007 March 2007 February 2007 December 2006 April 2006 March 2006 February 2006 December 2005 March 2005 February 2005 January 2005 November 2004 April 2004 March 2004 February 2004