Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Resort and backcountry skiing and snowboarding in the western US and Canada, including our famous reader-submitted No-Bull Snow Reports.

Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Admin » Wed Jan 20, 2016 7:35 pm

Day 37: The perfect storm.

(That's Skrad's subtitle for the day -- I'd never be that corny. :wink:)

But a big, hearty thank you to UDOT, even though they cost me a vacation day. I put the computer back down to head up this morning for a couple of runs with birthday boy jkamien, intending to take just a short break from work. But then they closed the road at 10:30 a.m., with an estimated reopening at noon. I'd just gotten there at 9 a.m. for a 9:15 opening, so I wasn't going to split before 10:30 -- I'd just stay a little longer than planned. No biggie. But noon turned into 12:30 p.m. That turned into 1 p.m. Eventually, the estimate was pushed back to 3 p.m., and at that point I had no option but to call my employer and cash in a PTO day.

But damn, it was worth it! The 5 a.m. morning report was only 1" of new, a disappointment, so few folks bothered to get up there before the 10:30 a.m. road closure. They made a huge mistake! At opening it was puking at a couple of inches per hour and the wind was on auto-groom. It was actually 5" by opening (eight inches would fall today in total) and it was dense and creamy. And there was (relatively) no one there, semi-country club skiing!

Jkamien and I headed for the Kitty, hoping to stay out of the 55 mph wind gusts atop Collins and in the trees where we could actually see something. But Wildcat would be delayed until 10:30 a.m., so we gave up and started on Collins.

Image
Waiting for the Kitty in a full-on blizzard.

Boy oh boy, were we hemmed in! On looker's left, there was no skiing beyond Liftline Trees and the High T and Tower 10/Saddle Traverse were both closed. On looker's right, the boundary was at the Main Street gate. Liftline, Fred's Trees or Mambo...the choice was easy: Fred's.

Divine! Smooth, creamy, untracked goodness! From the Angle Station we traversed across Rock Gully and were the absolute first folks out into Wildcat Face -- trust me, that didn't suck. So much so that we did it again.

At the end of our third trip out there it was 10:28 by the time we reached the base, so we opted to wait for Wildcat and it opened right on schedule. More untracked goodness! Jkamien was huffing and puffing, mostly because he was working much too hard on these skinny little 78mm Stockli Stormriders. Thank goodness he's a strong skier, but man...that's just working too damned hard for nothing!

We lapped Wildcat a few more times before noticing that they opened the High Traverse, so we returned to Collins, where we passed my friend Jill waiting at the Angle Station. She and her friend Neil, both from Park City, joined us for a few runs through North Rustler before lunch.

Image
Jill

Image
Jill

Image
Jill

Jkamien and three other guests at GMD formed a team for a trivia contest last night and came in second place, and won a plate of nachos and wings in the GMD saloon. I had bid Jill and Neil farewell, intending to head back to work, but once I realized that the road opening was delayed until 3 p.m. I joined the trivia winners in the bar for lunch and called my boss. It was then that I learned that Snowbird was closed completely! I was shocked so I checked their website -- sure enough, it showed 0/11 lifts open. I'm stumped.

Jkamien picked up some Armada JJ's at lunch and had a much better afternoon. After lunch we bumped into Skrad and spent most of the afternoon with him, with repeat laps through Thirds down to Garbage Chute, Bombay (I call the two the same; Skrad pointed out to me that they're actually different lines), and High Boy, which was ridiculously smooth and silky.

A self-avowed Collins snob, Skrad backed out when jkamien and I headed up Wildcat for one final run, a bus run down to the Bypass Road.

Image
jkamien

Image
jkamien

Image
jkamien

We finished up close to 3:45, when I joined jkamien in the saloon for an après-ski beer before heading down canyon at 4:30. Most of the few people who were there today had already split once the road reopened at 3:00, so the hassle factor of driving down canyon at 4:30 was non-existent.

Today didn't quite go as intended, but I'm actually glad that it didn't! \:D/
Image

Image
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 9969
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 9:32 am
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby q » Thu Jan 21, 2016 1:49 am

Awesome stuff!
Q
User avatar
q
 
Posts: 302
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2007 7:59 am
Location: Aberdeen, Scotland - Avatar: Primer Bowl, Loveland, CO

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Admin » Thu Jan 21, 2016 9:12 am

Here's a good example of why LCC road closed yesterday:

Image
A natural release in the White Pine Chutes just below Snowbird at 11 a.m. 1/20/2016, just after LCC Road was closed. (photo: UAC)
Image

Image
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 9969
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 9:32 am
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby jamesdeluxe » Thu Jan 21, 2016 9:45 am

User avatar
jamesdeluxe
 
Posts: 3319
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 3:19 pm
Location: South Orange, NJ

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Marc_C » Thu Jan 21, 2016 9:53 am

There was this, too:
https://utahavalanchecenter.org/avalanches/26147

Was driving down the bypass road to the Cliff lodge, saw a solo skier come out of <redacted> between the Ben Hame House and the Powder Ridge condos, at the convexity to the road. Small slab popped out and carried him down the whole slope into the center of the road, burried [sic] to his waist.

Image
-marc
User avatar
Marc_C
 
Posts: 3173
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2005 10:32 am
Location: A Sandy place south of a Great Lake

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:24 pm

admin wrote:Eventually, the estimate was pushed back to 3 p.m., and at that point I had no option but to call my employer and cash in a PTO day.
:-({|= This is what PTO days are SUPPOSED to be, not a bunch of early season WRODs!
http://bestsnow.net
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
User avatar
Tony Crocker
 
Posts: 9801
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 10:37 am
Location: Avatar: Charlotte Bay, Antarctica 2011
Location: Glendale, California

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Admin » Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:27 pm

Tony Crocker wrote:
admin wrote:Eventually, the estimate was pushed back to 3 p.m., and at that point I had no option but to call my employer and cash in a PTO day.
:-({|= This is what PTO days are SUPPOSED to be, not a bunch of early season WRODs!


As long as we're going to second-guess each other's choices, I got the same quality of skiing that you've been getting in Japan without 21 hours of travel in each direction and tens of thousands of dollars in expenses. :lol:

For the thousandth time, I'll use my PTO as I damn well please, thank you very much, and how I do so is no one's business but my own.
Image

Image
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 9969
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 9:32 am
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby berkshireskier » Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:40 pm

Admin wrote:
Tony Crocker wrote:
admin wrote:Eventually, the estimate was pushed back to 3 p.m., and at that point I had no option but to call my employer and cash in a PTO day.
:-({|= This is what PTO days are SUPPOSED to be, not a bunch of early season WRODs!


As long as we're going to second-guess each other's choices, I got the same quality of skiing that you've been getting in Japan without 21 hours of travel in each direction and tens of thousands of dollars in expenses. :lol:


Yea, but how is the sushi at Alta?? LOL
Last edited by berkshireskier on Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
berkshireskier
 
Posts: 426
Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:20 pm
Location: Western Massachusetts

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Admin » Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:47 pm

berkshireskier wrote:Yea, but how is the sushi at Alta?? LOL


Sucks. :lol:
Image

Image
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 9969
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 9:32 am
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Evren » Fri Jan 22, 2016 9:55 am

After reading this article by you, Admin:
http://www.firsttracksonline.com/2016/0 ... avalanche/

Am I correct in presuming skrad is Doug Green?
Such a touching tribute and reflection on life:

"We also talked about our plans for the future. Doug wanted to retire in about five years to his Sugar House home. He said that he could retire now, but he had to “decide just how modestly he wanted to live in retirement.” We talked about the fluctuating stock market and our 401k’s. Unfortunately, that’s all entirely meaningless now."
User avatar
Evren
 
Posts: 359
Joined: Mon May 30, 2011 5:08 pm
Location: Park City

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby Admin » Fri Jan 22, 2016 9:58 am

Evren wrote:After reading this article by you, Admin:
http://www.firsttracksonline.com/2016/0 ... avalanche/

Am I correct in presuming skrad is Doug Green?


I'm sorry to say that yes, they're one and the same.
Image

Image
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 9969
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 9:32 am
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby berkshireskier » Fri Jan 22, 2016 11:20 am

Admin wrote:
Evren wrote:After reading this article by you, Admin:
http://www.firsttracksonline.com/2016/0 ... avalanche/

Am I correct in presuming skrad is Doug Green?


I'm sorry to say that yes, they're one and the same.

Very sorry to hear about the tragic and premature death of your friend. Truly awful. Sometimes mountains can be cruel mistresses - either giving us great joy or terrible tragedy. My sympathies to his family!
berkshireskier
 
Posts: 426
Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:20 pm
Location: Western Massachusetts

Re: Alta, UT 1/20/2016

Postby baldyskier » Fri Jan 22, 2016 11:21 pm

Admin wrote:
Evren wrote:After reading this article by you, Admin:
http://www.firsttracksonline.com/2016/0 ... avalanche/

Am I correct in presuming skrad is Doug Green?


I'm sorry to say that yes, they're one and the same.


Sad and sobering news. Sorry for the loss for you and others that knew Doug. My prayers are with you all.
User avatar
baldyskier
 
Posts: 254
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 11:45 pm
Location: Los Angeles


Return to Western North America

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 11 guests


All content herein copyright © 1999-2017 First Tracks!! Online Media

Forums Terms & Conditions of Use

cron