Castle Mt., Alberta, Feb. 22, 2018

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Castle Mt., Alberta, Feb. 22, 2018

Postby Tony Crocker » Sat Feb 24, 2018 1:17 am

Temperatures improved vs. the prior two days to 0F at 9:30AM. Here I am with Castle’s marketing director Jason Crawford.
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During early afternoon it was about 5F up top and 10F at the base. It was the usual Great Gray North high overcast with a very few partial sunny breaks.

Fortunately with temperatures there was no wind. Liz and I did a warmup cruiser on the Huckleberry chair, which informed me that I needed to wear a face mask due to skin sensitized the prior day at Kicking Horse. Then we went up top and skied a Red Chair lap on Sheriff. Liz was comfortable with that so we regrouped with Tseeb and skied the 2,000 vertical Drifter. Once again Castle delivered outstanding snow conditions. Snowfall and preservation are similar to Kicking Horse, but the snow was noticeably softer due to Castle’s off-the-charts low skier density. East, SE and south exposures were mostly smooth and carvable windbuff, and the north side runs still had a fair amount of cut up dry powder from the last snowfall 5 days earlier.

On our next top to bottom lap we went north. View from the north catwalk of the top Red chair:
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We skied the wide open upper North Bowl.
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Liz showed more comfort than usual with steeper runs due to the excellent snow and lots of elbow room without confined entrances. So we next skied Lone Star, one of the first south chutes.
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It was now past 1PM so we went into the base lodge for a short hot chocolate thaw break. Liz and I skied Powder Horns/Northern Delight while I sent Tseeb farther out the north side. Then Tseeb and I went farther out the south chutes to Havey’s Dream, which had smooth windbuff on the sustained steeps, but some breakable snow on the apron runout to the Cinch traverse.
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We took a quick Tamarack lap on the Red chair to beat its 3:30 closing. View north of a sunny break at the top of Red before our last run:
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We skied North Star near the far northern boundary, 2,000 vertical of steep gladed trees. After skiing we met briefly with Patroller Darrel Luco, with whom Adam and I skied in 1999 and 2008. Darrel personally gladed those trees in the mid-2000’s. Darrel now is a guide for the Powder Stagecoach snowcat skiing, which appeared to be a thriving business with two cats of customers on a Thursday. The cat takes skies up the upper half of vertical while skiers use the Huckleberry chair to climb the lower half.

Liz skied 20,800 vertical, I skied 23,700 and Tseeb 26,700. Both of them have been hearing me rave about Castle for years and after their first day there now they know why.

WiFi was slow Friday and FTO crashed Saturday, so pictures finally loaded Sunday morning.
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
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Tony Crocker
 
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Re: Castle Mt., Alberta, Feb. 22, 2018

Postby lono » Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:28 am

Glad you got the goods,Castle has been terrific this year.
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