Thursday, April 5, 2012

April Showers.

So April Fool's Day started up with digging out the house, brushing a foot of fluff off the car and getting ready for a 7AM trailhead time.   We started skiing at 7:45.  Must have not gone as smooth as planned.  No worries, with snow like this it is sure to be a good day.  Especially when you consider the winter we had and the fact that it is well into spring.  Cold blower was waiting for us just a short hike away.  We chose this instead of waiting in line at the base of Kirkwood.  Oddly enough, the lifts opened on time and the entire mountain popped.  But, by far the best turns of the day were the ones we hiked for.  And with three of us sharing powder, instead of fighting 5000 others for powder, well, it was blissful.

Frozen bindings?  No problem.  The day begins with a little Duke defrost action. 

Andrew graciously breaks trail on the short ascent through beautiful pines.

Alex trains for Alaska and brings up the rear.  

Still snowing, we begin our descent.  It was powdery.


The night before we had all hiked for turns.  I hiked nearby by, while the others had fun on Powderhouse.  During the storm, the snow piled up and was super light.  By morning, things had settled just a bit, making the blower B+ grade, but blower none the less.  On the other hand, the bottom was completely spongy.  We would later confirm that the bottom inbounds was firm.  One thing I learned this day, is that with a bluebird spring powder day, sometimes it is just better to hang outside the ropes and earn your turns.  And the views were stunning.

But even moments later, the sky started to turn blue.  Andrew finds a deep patch.

Boo-ya.  A Fly by.

Alex hits up an old friend who has slowly shrank through the season, but is still good for a visit.

Enter the White Room.

Sometimes things just come together.  We hiked up during a morning squall.  We figured lighting would be decent at best for pictures, but who cares when it is just getting deeper.  Then, as we worked our way down the hill, one at a time, from safe spot, to safe spot, the storm began to fall apart.  And then the sun started to come out.  As I was scoping out my line, I realized I had a perfect angle to capture Andrew's line.  Got some of my favorite pics of the the season.  I like the middle one the best, but all three are winners.  

When the light comes on, Andrew is ready to slay


Oh, so that is where you are going.  

Blower and giant roller balls.  Must be a cold spring moring.

After our first lap we elected to head inbounds.  It was fun enough.  Long lines.  Tracked snow.  Alex got to pop his Once cherry.  That was good times.  I got my Once for this year.  That was good times.  Found some fun snow, then a few sunny side inbounds wet slides shut down the hill.  April sun baked it good.  So we decided to head back out to our morning stash to get one more before it really became spring like

Back inbounds, Alex finds some slightly tracked fun.

The afternoon was still fun, if a little blurry (and over exposed)

Alex wraps it around a tree.  Better than wrapping into the tree...
Of course, being the ultimate amature, I somehow fiddled with my camera settings and lost almost everything from the afternoon.  Oh well, here a few I "saved" enough to capture a sense of how horrible the spring sun muddled our powder.  Still a great run in the afternoon warmth.  And a great way to wrap up a spring powder day.  Now, for next week, corn and slush are on the menu.  And don't forget to wear sunblock folks.  This is burn season.

More pics and words here.

Andrew finishes his day with a powder turn

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