Smuggler's Notch, VT 3/28/01

Resort and backcountry skiing and snowboarding in eastern US and Canada, including our famous reader-submitted No-Bull Snow Reports.

Smuggler's Notch, VT 3/28/01

Postby Anonymous » Wed Mar 28, 2001 7:27 pm

6:15 Tuesday night: Will asks if I want to go to Smuggs tomorrow. I hesitate, not knowing of any new snow in the future, having lots of work to do, and not wanting to shell out the money for a ticket. Then he mentions that he can get comp. passes. Then he mentions that r@!& is coming and that this might be the last light fluffy day of the season. OK, why not. <BR> <BR>7:00am Wednesday: Will and I hop on the road. I'm informed that Mansfield got 6" of fluff overnight. With the temps being what they are, I know it's light. <BR> <BR>8:15am: We're pulling into the upper parking lot and I mention to Will, "I wonder if we'll see Matt up here. He's got that nice schedule; I bet <BR>he'll be here." <BR> <BR>8:17am: As we're unloading our stuff, Matt walks around from the driver's side of the car next to us. Well hello - This is going to be a fun morning! <BR> <BR>Introductions are made as we boot up and head down to Sterling. The mantra for the day is quality, not quantity. A few good untracked runs and we'll all head back into the valley to earn some money. (Earned turns are much more valuable than earned money; it's just too damn hard to find anyone that accepts them as currency.) <BR> <BR>The lift rumbles to life; the dozen anxious people waiting to make those blissful turns are quickly seated for the 10 minute ride up the hill. <BR> <BR>From the top we headed to the side country. Where else is there to ski? <IMG SRC="" ALT=":)"> It looked like we were the first people to the stash that Matt had in mind. As we got closer to the entrance, however, it appeared that someone had beaten us to it. That's OK; it's a big area and there's plenty left for us. <BR> <BR>More than I could have imagined, actually. We took two runs in that area and found great chutes and glades filled with light fluffy powder. So much powder that it started to slide more than once. The first time I had fallen and Will stopped above me. He watched the fracture line spread and start sliding down towards me. That one only went 15 yards or so, but it certainly heightened my awareness of avalanche danger. Thank god for eastern trees. <IMG SRC="" ALT=":)"> <BR> <BR>The second slide was kicked off in a wider chute. Matt led, Will was second, and I was taking up the rear. I watched the two of them go down and surf the wave of snow that was making its way down the mountain. As I reached the bottom, I got a feeling for just how far it slid. <BR> <BR>There is so much snow on Mansfield. <BR> <BR>So.. after the two runs in that section, we decided that we wanted another quick one (couldn't afford the 20 minute hike out there.) OK; it'll be a little more skied out at the top, but we can deal with that. To the back bowls! We followed a route similar to the one taken when Matt gave his famous tour earlier in the season. Matt jumped the boulder (What's knee surgery?), and hopped through some other stuff. There were tons of untracked turns, whoops and screams of pleasure. <BR> <BR>And then it was time to go to work. At least this time the dreamy turns weren't interrupted by my alarm clock. <BR> <BR>Ski today; work tomorrow.

Smuggler's Notch, VT 3/28/01

Postby Matt Duffy » Wed Mar 28, 2001 7:33 pm

OH. MY. GOD. <BR> <BR> You'd think that I'd have lost my voice a few months ago, but here I am - still yelling and screaming with more enthusiasm than Tour Guide Barbie in Toy Story 2. <BR> <BR> The Smuggs website says 5" new. That's strange, there's more than double that on my stairs. And it sure seemed to me that it was above our boot tops on the mountain. Up to the knees in some spots. Evidence of yesterdays tracks were vanished. Just a smooth, glittering white sea with trees protruding upward. They, too, are covered in smooth, glittering white. So much for snow reports. <BR> <BR> Quality, quality, quality. <BR> <BR> It was great to see the anonymous poster & Will pull up beside me in the parking lot before the lifts started running. This winter has been nothing but a long string of super synchronicities. Mathematical improbabilities. Good karma. <BR> <BR> Will is an amazing guy. He's a 48 year old inspiration to those that never want to grow up. So many people toil & waste away their lives while slaving toward a retirement & a day when they can finally start enjoying & indulging. Too bad, those people grow old before the day comes. Will's stories of youth - filled with skiing, bumming around Europe, skiing, taking work just seriously enough to sustain a life of fun, skiing at 200+ KPH for 15 years, etc... - ultimatley reveal a truth that I believe very strongly. <BR> <BR> If you don't slow down, you'll never grow old. You'll live out dreams while in the prime of your life, and your life will always be prime. <BR> <BR> It was funny when Will said "I can't ski with my 50 year old friends anymore. If I wanna have fun, I've gotta ski with people in their 20's". Funny, but also eye opening. He wasn't BS'ing. That guy is a hell of a skier! <BR> <BR> The anonymous poster summed up the skiing portion quite nicely, so I'll just touch on: <BR> <BR>He wrote: <BR> <BR>The second slide was kicked off in a wider chute. Matt led, Will was <BR>second, and I was taking up the rear. I watched the two of them go down <BR>and surf the wave of snow that was making its way down the mountain. As <BR>I reached the bottom, I got a feeling for just how far it slid. <BR>--------------------------------------------------------------------- <BR> <BR> It slid, oh, maybe 150 yards? I'm not good with estimates like that, but what I do know is... I stopped near the bottom to look back at you guys. I saw Will for a moment until a wall of snow came crashing into me from thighs down. It knocked me over and dragged me with it for about 10 feet. WOW!
Matt Duffy
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