Monday, January 23, 2012

A big game of snow roulette

We finally got that huge snow everyone out west has been waiting for.  On Saturday the local resorts reported between 20 and 28 inches of new snow.  Sweet!

Now the question is where to go skiing.  Hindsight is 20-20, but here is what happened on Sunday:
  • Little Cottonwood Canyon had a major avalanche and the risk of a lot more.  Alta and Snowbird didn't open until about 1:00, and then only about half the resort.
  • Everyone that would have gone up Little Cottonwood went up Big Cottonwood to ski Brighton and Solitude.  That meant a huge traffic jam, no parking, and a million skiers and boarders..
  • Canyons was in better shape, but still had a lot of avalanche risk.  They opened the middle of the mountain, but left the left and right sections closed until about 11:00 and 1:00.  So, there were long lines and a lot less choice.
  • Park City and Deer Valley managed to open just about everything almost immediately, even though DV was the one who reported 28".
We rolled the dice and went to the Canyons because they tend to have the best glade/tree skiing.  Bummer.  It was nice but I wish we had wandered over to DV instead.  You just never know how the day will play out until ti's over.

Going to Canyons did create a great new game, ripe for betting.  If you read my last post, you saw these little solar lights they put right along the road.
Sure enough, after the first good snow, lots of them were down.  I counted as we drove by and I saw 39 of them down.  When we left the resort later in the day we saw a work crew digging them out of the snow and putting them back up.  Now we have a benchmark to see if we can beat. 
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