Tuesday Mar. 14 was the final day in Utah for Liz’ friends Rob and Don, so we showed them around Snowbird. They started at Gadzoom and joined us at 11:15 to take the tram up. The weather was now in the 50’s with almost no wind, so the softening process was accelerated. This view from Hidden Peak shows why the Salt Lake locals don’t mind March dry spells or remember them for very long.
We went into Mineral Basin right away with a nice run on White Diamonds but on the second run Lone Star the snow was getting heavy after noon. Second time up the Mineral lift we ran into 8 of our Iron Blosam group including admin’s friend Nate. We all skied a couple of Rasta runs. Don on first run there:
Rob emerging from trees skier’s left of Rastas second run:
We continued on to lunch at mid-Gad 1PM. After lunch Stefan joined Liz, Rob, Don and me to ski the liftline of Gad 2, well filled in this season, then down to Gadzoom via Tricep to avoid the now slushy Lower Bassackwards.
After two lifts to the top, Liz led Don to Middle Cirque while Rob and Stefan followed me to Jaws, which has not had adequate coverage for me to ski since 2011. View down Jaws:
Snow was moderately soft chalk, skier spray backlit by the sun shining down the chute. Rob just below the upper narrow section:
Stefan in the middle of Jaws:
I was pleased to see winter packed powder snow on the entire apron of the Upper Cirque. Overview of Upper Cirque:
We got to the tram, coincidentally shared with Mark, Adam and a few others from Iron Blosam. Mark and I agreed to look for Macaroni, but Mark took off through the last Silve Fox gate, thinking that Rock Chute was Macaroni. Rock Chute was steep and had some step-over rocks halfway down, so only Scott (13-year-old new to Iron Blosam this year), Rob and I followed Mark in there. As is often the case I don’t think about the camera when I’m skiing DFU territory. We merged back into Upper Silver Fox. Some of our group finishing that:
Overview of the area:
North Chute has coverage for the first time since 2011 but it is roped with cliff warning signs. Interestingly a patroller riding the tram the next day said the sign is just that, a warning not a closed sign. Macaroni is the chute directly under the tram tower.
Everyone else called it a day, but Stefan and I took a final run on Peruvian, skiing low Baldy out to Eye of the Needle. I finished with 17,600 vertical.
While in the tram Adam and Mark informed me that they had skied a more constricted route through the lower cliff band of Baldy but that Nate had tried to hockey stop in the slushy flats approaching Middle Chip’s Run and sustained a serious injury. Eddie was in the Snowbird clinic with Nate. I checked in there and learned that Nate had a fractured fibula and ankle sprain. By 5:30PM Nate’s leg was wrapped up securely so I brought him over to Iron Blosam, where admin picked him up at 7:15 to take him down to Salt Lake.
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,318K in 2010-11
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12