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Snowbasin, UT 3/11/2017

PostPosted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 9:56 pm
by Admin
Day 44: Corn on the cob.

Tony Crocker, Liz and I ventured north today to the Ogden Valley to Snowbasin.

Ever since Monday's snowstorm it's been frighteningly warm in Utah, with temperatures in the mountains in the 40s and the Salt Lake Valley in the mid-60s. This is weather that's 5 or 6 weeks ahead of schedule. The Crocker Utah curse continues.

But still, today was delightfully gorgeous out. Friend Nathan, visiting from New York, joined us on our third run. We spent the morning with Megan Collins, who works in Snowbasin's marketing department and whom I first met while she was working at Crested Butte two seasons ago. Thanks to a chance encounter in John Paul Lodge we spent much of the afternoon with Snowbasin patroller Kevin Sheridan, who was one of my guides with Whisper Ridge Cat Skiing last winter and has since become a valued friend. Talk about expert local guidance!

We managed to find great snow today, with a few exceptions. I figured north-facing Lone Tree would be carvable and chalky; instead it was bulletproof and downright frightening. All I could do is hope that my Dynafits would hang on as I tried to ride the chattering,bucking bronco and probably knocked a few fillings loose in the process. Still, that was today's worst error in judgment and we quickly learned from our mistake. A high, thin cloud layer that moved in the afternoon slowed the softening, but our last run through untracked corn from the top of Philpot Ridge all the way down to Penny Lane was undoubtedly the best run of the day. The next best thing to untracked pow is untracked corn.

We hoped to ski Mt. Ogden Chute today, but while waiting for it to soften Ski Patrol closed the gate that access that hike at around noon for fear of wet slides. By playing our aspects right we scored nearly perfect corn all day long. I even managed to drag Crocker into what he considers to be tight trees.

Snowbasin was packed today thanks in part to their only demo day of the season, and even at 10 a.m. we were forced to park in the next to last Maples lot. Still, liftlines were nearly non-existent.

Looking down Malan's Basin from the top of Strawberry, with Hill AFB, the Great Salt Lake and Antelope Island in the distance.


From the top of Lone Tree.

Looking north from the top of the Mt. Allen Tram.

Re: Snowbasin, UT 3/11/2017

PostPosted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 11:49 pm
by Tony Crocker
Some pics from Snowbasin, probably Utah's most scenic ski area.

Liz at top of Stawberry view over the Great Salt Lake and Antelope Island:

Admin and Nathan at top of Lone Tree:

Megan skiing Lone Tree:

It looks a lot better than it felt under your skis.

Liz getting a much needed stiff shot of Southern Comfort at the bottom of Lone Tree:

Admin and Nathan at top of John Paul tram, view north to Ben Lomond Peak:

Kevin and Admin on Lower Grizzly Downhill:

We did this twice as corn was optimal there in early afternoon

View of Salt & Pepper Chutes from Needles gondola, once skied by BobbyD:

South facing, narrow at ~45 degrees, perfect conditions required. At least the coverage is there this season.

View Lone Tree, chute upper left much wider than normal:

We were told it was good yesterday.

Sorry I did not get a pic of those scattered trees below Philpot RIdge on the last run.

Re: Snowbasin, UT 3/11/2017

PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 1:31 am
by jamesdeluxe
Liz skied/survived Lone Tree? Good for her! I always look up at it but have never skied it.

Re: Snowbasin, UT 3/11/2017

PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 10:22 am
by Tony Crocker
Survived was an apt description. If it had the snow Diamond Bowl at Blackcomb had Tuesday she would have "skied" it.

Re: Snowbasin, UT 3/11/2017

PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 10:23 am
by Admin
Is she down yet?