Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

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Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Sharon » Sat Feb 02, 2008 10:48 pm

We made it out of Dodge Friday evening and managed to catch all 3 of our flights, though the 2nd two required an inter-terminal aerobic interlude to get to the gate as they were boarding. It was nice to get some exercise after sitting for so long in the plane, though the stress I could live without. It all went well and we got to SLC by 11pm. Sadly Pam's duffel did not make it out of Minneapolis and she was without ski boots. This is why I carry mine in my carry-on backpack, along with a pair of ski pants, base layers, socks, gloves, underwear and a pair of goggles. I think that these days there's a 25% chance that your bag isn't going to arrive when you do. Having my boots is the most important thing. The airline will pay for ski rentals, though I'd hate to wear an unknown pair of boots, especially skiing the deep snow we skied today. I highly recommend carrying your boots in your carry-on. The experience was actually fortuitous because it forced Pam into renting skis (Dynastar Legend) that were way better than what she has and the boots were not too bad either. She had a super day and felt much more confident and sure-footed than she does on her 5 yr old Ten-Eighties which seem so skinny by today's standards.

Day 1 of 7

Beautiful bluebird powder day at Alta. Temps hovered around 20 keeping the snow light and dry even with the sun. The sun gave the illusion of warmth and kept our spirits high.

Tele-Jon picked us up and we met up with Skidog, Bob Dangerous and Pat at the GMD.

I can't remember where we went the first run. Ballroom was not yet open, but we went over towards Sugarloaf and the snow was so fluffy and deep. The second run we went back to see if Ballroom was open, and indeed it was. For me it was the best run of the day, in thigh deep fluff, plenty of fresh turns where I dropped in just beyond the cliffs. It was so sweet. The second best run of the day was just before lunch we skied west of Westward Ho and down to the road. The snow in there was also very fluffy and thigh deep and there were many fresh untracked lines to be had. It was so amazing to ski such beautiful snow. It was certainly the Greatest Snow on Earth. Simply fabulous.

It is always a pleasure skiing with the local transplants. They know the mountain quite well and are excellent hosts, showing us plenty of the good stuff. We tried to take it easy today, being our first day, but we still skied until 3:30. Sadly two of our pals were missing. Marc_C and Admin. We missed you!

We regrouped for dinner at the Red Iguana to celebrate Admin's recent birthday. Tirolpeter, his lovely wife Susan, and Marc_C's jovial wife Karen also joined us. Skidog blew us off without warning and Jon had an emergency house repair. Sadly Admin had been ill and was just getting reacclimated to eating solid food and Marc_C was suffering from an evil cold and were absent from the feast. Mexican was definitely not a good choice for the ill, but we went out anyway to celebrate Admin's birthday, since it was he who had brought all of us together. We toasted Admin with our most delicious margaritas and had one of the best Mexican dinners I have ever had. Even the Margarita's were better than I had ever had before. The place is truly special and they were cranking out excellent meals all night. There were still people waiting when we left at 8:30.

I am zonked and need to rejuvenate for the upcoming snowstorm which is to start some time tomorrow and into Monday. If all goes well, maybe Admin will make an appearance. Marc_C take some cold medicine and get out of the house.
Last edited by Sharon on Sun Feb 03, 2008 8:14 am, edited 2 times in total.
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Admin » Sat Feb 02, 2008 11:18 pm

Glad y'all had a good day, wish I could've been there. And thanks for the voicemail birthday song from the Red Iguana! :lol: I'm back on solid food again, happy to say. Let's just see if it stays solid. :roll:

I'll try to get out tomorrow, but with not eating for 2 days and my decreased appetite as a result I'm not sure how much energy I'll have. There's been next to no caloric intake for 60 hours, save for iced tea, but each hour is better.
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Harvey44 » Sun Feb 03, 2008 8:48 am

Go gettum Sharon. We need admin out there so we can see some VIDEO of Sharon- that would be a treat.

Looks like that stomach thing is ravaging the nation. I thought it was really an east coast thing, everyone is going through it here. CB, Neve and I had to drive back from the mountains with it and it weren't pretty. The drive from hell. Get well soon.
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Admin » Sun Feb 03, 2008 8:52 am

I'll be out there today, but I don't know how useful I'll be. Depends on my energy level. I feel much better, but haven't eaten much yet. I'll aim to shoot some vids but it won't be a photogenic day -- the next storm is already arriving here.
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Re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Marc_C » Sun Feb 03, 2008 9:43 am

Sharon wrote:The second run we went back to see if Ballroom was open, and indeed it was. For me it was the best run of the day, in thigh deep fluff, plenty of fresh turns where I dropped in just beyond the cliffs.

A minor point, but it helps when we all use the same names: :wink:
Although to get where you dropped in ("...just beyond the cliffs." ) you use the Ballroom Traverse, technically, Ballroom ends at the rope line at the bottom of Baldy Main Chute. Anything beyond is Baldy Shoulder - it sounds like maybe you did Tombstone. This sometimes causes confusion for visitors on those days when the Ballroom is open but Baldy Shoulder is closed.

Sharon wrote:Marc_C take some cold medicine and get out of the house.

I am and I'd love to, but I'm still barely functional. It's frustrating. Between this and my appendectomy the week before xmas, I've lost a lot of powder days this season.
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby tirolerpeter » Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:21 am

My "lovely wife Susan" and I enjoyed meeting Sharon and Pam at the RI. While I looked forward to skiing with the "crew" today, the new storm would make visibility on the trip up the canyon and thus skiing very difficult. Not to mention, I don't want to chance being "snowed in" up top if they decided to close the road. Besides, I would have had to spend at least an hour snowblowing out my garage apron and driveway to get down to my unplowed street. And, considering the mechanical mayhem I have witnessed on the roads during the past couple of storms I have opted to wait this one out. Considering the base that is developing from these successive storms, I will just have to ski further into the spring to make up for lost days. Maybe tomorrow we will get some "blue sky" weather and all this snow will be all the better to ski in. I do feel compassion for our NY visitors who have to make the most of their time here.
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Re: re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Marc_C » Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:55 am

tirolerpeter wrote:Not to mention, I don't want to chance being "snowed in" up top if they decided to close the road.

With only 10" - 14" predicted, full-on indefinite closure is only a remote possibility. We need a lot more, a lot faster, and a lot more unexpected for that to happen. It's only happened twice in the past 8 seasons, iirc (and one of those was in the spring when a huge wet slide out of Tanners blocked the road). Even when it's likely, UDOT will usually try to open a one hour window for down-canyon traffic late in the day.

However, a temporary closure for control work early - mid afternoon is pretty likely. I agree about the visibility sucking though and with the high winds, I'd not be surprised at the detachables being shut down.

Edited Update: Yep, just checked the Alta site:
The road into the canyon will be temporarily restricted beginning at 1:00 pm for mid canyon avalanche control work. The estimated reopening time is 3:30 pm. Please check back, we will update the website throughout the day.


PS: what's "up" with all the "extraneous" and "gratuitous" quote "marks in" your "posts"? :lol: :lol:
No offense intended - it's just a "pet" peeve of mine (and "others"):
http://quotation-marks.blogspot.com/
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby tirolerpeter » Sun Feb 03, 2008 6:34 pm

Glad to hear that closure of the canyon road (at least for downhill traffic) is rarely done. As to the "pet" peeve of "gratuitous" quotation marks, I guess it is a stylistic affectation. I'll try not to feed your "pet" too often Marc. :D
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Sharon » Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:15 pm

Peter, you should have come up. The skiing was the best ever and the visibility was just fine in the trees. The snow was deeper than the day before. The skiing was undoubtedly epic.

I will wait for Marc to post his report hopefully with some of the video and/or still photos. My pix won't be ready until I get home, or find a usb cable and/or SD card reader.

It is still snowing, another foot or so is expected overnight. Tmrw may well be another epic day. Not sure yet where we will ski, will decide in the morning.

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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Sharon » Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:20 pm

A minor point, but it helps when we all use the same names:
Although to get where you dropped in ("...just beyond the cliffs." ) you use the Ballroom Traverse, technically, Ballroom ends at the rope line at the bottom of Baldy Main Chute. Anything beyond is Baldy Shoulder - it sounds like maybe you did Tombstone. This sometimes causes confusion for visitors on those days when the Ballroom is open but Baldy Shoulder is closed.


Indeed you are correct, it was Tombstone. I don't know all the names, all I know is that we entered Ballroom and kept traversing until there was a nice swath of unskied snow.
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Admin » Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:21 pm

I'm workin' on it, I'm workin' on it. I just finished editing the video -- it's good -- because I'm still learning Adobe Premiere. I had to switch because Ulead Media Studio Pro, which I've used for eons, won't function correctly on my new Vista machine. Premiere also hasn't been cooperating, crashing often. It's now rendering, and should take another good hour barring any more hiccups.
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby Tony Crocker » Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:27 pm

I do feel compassion for our NY visitors who have to make the most of their time here.
I think the NY visitors are getting exactly the weather they want :wink: .
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re: Day 1 of 7 - Alta 2/2/08

Postby EMSC » Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:23 am

How interesting. I was at Alta on Sat as well and skied entirely different terrain. Having skied 2+ feet of fresh at Canyons on Fri (I'll post something on my 2 day s there sometime Mon), we went for open bowl style terrain. Starting with East Greeley area. cut up but very soft.

Eventually getting some short but sweet tracks in cecret saddle for a couple runs and then doing Devils Castle after the hundreds and hundreds of people got tired of the hike (went nearly all the way over so got great fresh tracks as nearly all the initial hikers did not hike that far). Eventually hit a few runs on Supreme and Collins (huge lines there when we arrived so avoided that chair nearly all day).

Anyway the powder I got seemed in the boot top to knees range. Good stuff though not as much as Friday at Canyons. Here are a few of my pics. My ski partner took a lot of video, but he has that and I am not familiar with editing it or etc.. so none of myself for the moment...

Admin, sorry you were ill. Hope your recovery is going strong.
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alta-top.JPG
Friend Mike at the top of Alta.
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Cecret Saddle. Great timing for opening! My tracks are the full line to the left, Mike is the other full length track that meets up with mine.
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somewhere in the bottom of castle area
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alta-pow.JPG
friend Mike in powder. knee depth.
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alta-castle.JPG
well into the Castle area and plenty of fresh long after the line died down...
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view from top of supreme with interesting clouds/sun mix
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2nd pic of the interesting clouds
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