Sunday, November 3, 2019

First Scratches

I got out for my first turns of the season Saturday morning.  First scratches might be more accurate since we stuck to skiing Collins gulch where artificial snow has bolstered the cover and snowpack.  Conditions consisted of a mixture of silky man made, trappable crust (from man made covering natural), and chunder.  I heard it was better than a couple of days earlier. 

Many resorts took advantage of last weeks unusually low temperatures to pump out the white stuff, and Alta is no exception.  I suspect they could have opened the main run down Collins gulch this weekend if they wanted to.  It just needed a bit some farming and a good groom.

Photo: Erik Steenburgh
Snowmaking continued while we were ascending in the morning.  However, the guns were all off on our descent, reflecting the warmer daytime temperatures.  Snowmaking conditions over the next week look less optimal and I suspect daytime snowmaking will be challenging until at least next weekend. 

Work has started on the new Mambo half-pipe, sure to thrill freestyle skiers and snowboarders...

Photo: Erik Steenburgh
Turns were best on the man-made silk, although one needed to be attentive as some of the apparent silk was trappable crust. 

Photo: Erik Steenburgh
The next week looks like a good one if you like sun and just want to start building fitness and you don't mind risking a lose filling or two in Collins gulch.  Non-resort options are pretty much DOA on south aspects, although there are reports of some getting out in shark-infested low-tide conditions on high north aspects. 

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