Not too much to tell as I only had a couple hours to ski this morning.
After driving home tonight, I wouldn't be surprised if turnout was light across the northeast this weekend. Traffic was unusually light. And when Zelda was doing her shift at the wheel, I saw that Belleayre had posted on their Facebook page, that they'd had 1000 skiers on Saturday and Sunday combined. That seem low to me for an opening weekend. (Anyone know?) I also saw Twitter reports from Killington that indicated lift lines were non-existant.
Got to the hill around 7:45 and it was deserted:
Made some new friends in the base lodge, Jeff and Jaffa. Also ran in to Matty (ka2kci) and we reconnected after the summer. The Gondi went green at 8:25 and I dashed out and rode solo to the top of Bear.
The corduroy was significantly more carvable than yesterday, with another day of grooming and 3 inches of natural snow mixed in ...
Big GS turns, all alone, down Sunway. Very nice.
Back down at the Gondi I ran into Jeff and Jaffa again and we together rode up. They were diggin it....
I lapped the one lower mountain run, and each time as we neared the top of the Gondola ride, I strained to see if the rope was down on Topridge.
I'd promised Zelda I'd quit skiing at 10:30 and be home by 11. At 10:15, on what was supposed to be my last run, the rope was still up. As I was popping my skis on, I saw Mark Kenyon, the head of the snowmaking crew. We'd met on Friday night, when he showed me the snowmaking operations, and introduced me to the second shift.
Turns out he and I both have a fascination with Everest and tales of valor on 8000 meter peaks. He'd even loaned me his copy of Ghosts of Everest at the end of the evening. As a nut for that stuff, I can tell you it's rare to find someone who even heard of "Green Boots."
"Mark! How are ya?"
"Harv! How's the skiing?"
"Sweet. Hey... any chance they are about to drop the rope on Topridge?"
He walks into the patrol shack, and comes out a minute later.
We jabbered on a little more about Everest, and then this gentleman started strolling across the way:
I was first under the rope, but the blogger in me stopped for a pic and SteveC shot past me....
He and Pam rocked it...
There were definitely some water bars, footprints and other funky stuff to manage. The wetblub was right on the borderline for snowmaking, so it wasn't that silk you get when you are blowing at 5 degrees. But it was the right kind of snow to be laying down as a base.
Put it this way, no one was complaining. It was a blast skiing it. Pitch, swales and a totally carvable surface.
I did my run, and got on the chair excited that I'd accomplished my goal for the day in a few short hours.
On the way down to the base, Sunway was absolutely deserted. No one was passing up Topridge.
My guess is that Topridge probably got better as it got some skier traffic.
If you can, get out there and get it.
"You just need to go at that shit wide open, hang on, and own it." —Camp
I'd say you're right: Topridge skied better and better as it got skied in. By the time we hit Topridge, probably less than 2 hours after your run, it was skiing great. Really nice having that kind of terrain for opening weekend.
I don't know who the skier is pictured above, but he was loving it.
Nice report Harvey. It was great running into you on Sunday morning. Too bad we didn't get a chance to ski together. Kudos to the snowmaking crew at Gore. The surface on Sunway to Quicksilver was very good and it got bumped up later in the day. Topridge got better as the day went on and was a welcome break from skiing Sunway all day. Its unfortunate that we are about to get a deluge of rain this week but hopefully it will get colder this weekend. I am hoping for a great year!!! Matt