A few people at Iron Blosam, Stefan, Ed Cook, Eric and Janet decided to try Brighton for one day. I encouraged Liz to go as she had never skied there. When I saw the weather forecast predicted some clouds and wind like Sunday, I figured much of Snowbird might remain frozen and that I might have better luck on Brighton’s mellower terrain and some of its sunnier exposure.
We arrived about 10:45AM and headed up the Crest and Snake Creek chairs. Heber Valley view and some backcountry tracks:
North facing terrain maxes at 10,000 and we found zero winter snow. We thus moved to east facing Millicent and spent most of the day there. The wide groomers like Main Street and Exhibition had excellent corn when we arrived and stayed that way due to low skier traffic the clouds gradually increasing to an overall thin overcast by 1PM.
After 3 groomers we ventured off trail close to the Millicent chair.
Upper Milly close to the lift had a slight SE tilt and somewhat heavy snow, “not in the comfort zone,” said Eric, one of the eastern skiers. He, Stefan and Liz all approved more of Lone Pine skier’s right of the lift, a bit crunchy on occasion but more supportable. After two runs there we went in for lunch at 1:45.
I skied Shale Slope, similar to Lone Pine, after lunch and then rode Crest to get over to Great Western. View from top of Great Western:
It was past 3:30 but we had arrived none too early. Liz and I tested a short mogul pitch from top of the lift down to the Elk Park catwalk. They were firm so I knew all the black runs below the cat walk would not soften. The Elk Park blue trail itself was decent but still slightly on the form side of ideal. But lower down the Aspen Glo groomer dropped off to skier’s left and was corn perfection all the way down to the Snake Creek lift, so good we all opted for an encore. Liz and I took an extra Elk Park farther down the ridge, Liz to Rockin’ R and me to Silver Spur and eventually to the area boundary where I met patroller Rob. Rob gave me the references to the keeper of Brighton’s snow data from a plot at 9,500 feet in the woods near the Snake Creek lift. I left my contact info at the patrol office but time will tell if I get anything.
At the base of Great Western was a sticker admin will appreciate.
I skied 20,400 vertical, most of it groomers, but that’s where the best snow was. Very few of our group skied at Snowbird Thursday and those whom did said most snow remained firm.
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