Blackcomb, B.C., Mar. 5, 2017

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Blackcomb, B.C., Mar. 5, 2017

Postby Tony Crocker » Wed Mar 08, 2017 1:28 am

On the second day with Extremely Canadian we head up Blackcomb about 8:20, took a Jersey Cream warmup and then went into their hut near Rendezvous to review Saturday’s video shot on lower Harmony. When we were done we headed up to the top of Showcase and bootpacked up to the top of the Blackcomb Glacier. The distinctive tilted halfpipe formation at the top of Blowhole is gone. It was a glacial feature that melted in the summer of 2015 after the lean snow year. The top is now rocky but you can drop in about ¼ of the way down and the rest of Blowhole skis similar to before.

We exited Blowhole on a traverse skier’s left which leads through uncontrolled terrain eventually to Sapphire Bowl. But Ace knew an opening through the cliff band below the traverse to get us first tracks in Double Rebel. View down:
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The light got flat but some of Double Rebel was steep and deep, only Connor’s head visible here:
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We went back up top again after taking the Crystal, Glacier and Showcase lifts. This time we traversed to Sapphire Bowl, where could see the entries coming from Spanky’s Ladder.
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The two skiers are below the highest entry that must be straightlined. The middle entry is at center and the lower entry at the right edge of the picture. But the traverse entry from Blowhole is higher and gets you a nice powder run in upper Sapphire.

We did not ski lower Sapphire but moved left to Zut Zut.
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This dumps into the bottom of Diamond Bowl.

We had lunch at Glacier Lodge, came out to this view of the Glacier and Jersey Cream chairs, about as much sun as we saw all day.
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We went up to Spanky’s Ladder and skied Diamond Bowl to Calvin & Hobbes in better light than Friday. View across Diamond Bowl:
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Skiers in Calvin & Hobbes, Ace skiing below:
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Next time up Glacier we took the Horstman T-bar to inspect Chainsaw Ridge, which has massive cornices in an above average snow year like this one.
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Extremely Canadian’s top group was looking for a way in up there. We moved farther down, found maybe a 5 foot drop in. I went first, landed OK but tried to slow down too early and lost my balance. I fell,rolled over to get my skis downhill and came to a rest by Ace. He later intercepted a lost ski coming down the hill.

Lower down Ace directed us to a line of good powder. I took this pic of Ace dropping in, did not notice the powder spraying crash at right.
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We took another Spanky’s run into Diamond Bowl, this time diverting to a higher chute beyond Calvin & Hobbes, Bad Attitude. Our final high alpine run of the day was Big Bang, and fortunately we got decent visibility all the way down Jersey Cream Bowl for that.

We got down the hill by taking the Expessway catwalk toward 7th Heaven, diverting down the soft bump run Watch Out to Sunset Boulevard and Gearjammer. On the second day we finished with the nachos and beer in the upstairs at Merlin’s with the other Extremely Canadian groups. Liz was with a different guide Nick Sunday.

Extremely Canadian is in its last year of a 6 year contract to operate its independent program at Whistler/Blackcomb. We did hear at Merlin’s that Vail Resorts has renewed them for at least next year. Extremely Canadian works closely with the resort ski school, referring customers who may not be up to EC’s terrain and pace. Some instructors work for both Whistler/Blackcomb ski school and Extremely Canadian.
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Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
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Tony Crocker
 
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Location: Glendale, California

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