Page 1 of 1

Kirkwood 2/16 and 2/19/2021

PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2021 9:20 pm
by tseeb
I was hoping for a powder day as there was chain control on CA-88 most of Monday and it started at Silver Lake 5 miles before Kirkwood early on Tues, but I didn’t realize that it had rained to over 9,000’ feet in the Sierra on President’s day.
Crossing 7990' Carson Spur before 8:30
Reports from Squaw said it had snowed after the rain so there were pockets of new snow. At Kirkwood, the new snow was less an inch deep and surface was firm, even where it apparently had been groomed earlier in evening.

I got the closest parking spot to where cats and snowmobiles cross at 8:30, took my time getting ready and was on Timber Creek lift before 9. I meant to head to the Backside, but got too low going across so I went up Cornice. They had knocked down the bumps on more than half the width of Lookout Janek, but with the steepness and firm snow it skied better by keeping the speed way down. The Wall was spinning slowly and not loading and operator at The Reut said it was being de-iced (it never opened). I went by chair 2 that takes you to the Backside, but saw it was also not loading so I skied down and rode the Reut again, meeting up with SSSDave who had also driven up from San Jose. We skied the Reut again, then did a lap on Cornice before going to chair 2 which was now loading.

The Backside chair was delayed until at least 10:45 so we skied chair 3 twice. Then I skied long slow Backside 5 times lapping Dave who was making a lot of turns all day, even where Backside flattened out out on the bottom half that I usually mostly ripped though. I also lost him on the way back to the front where I did a lap on chair 2, then skied Low Whisky back to the Reut. I saw him from Reut and Cornice, but I went back to the car about 2 to re-hydrate, eat some salty snacks, sit in chair I had brought, put more charge into my phone and take some ibuprofen for my back which has been stiff since last weekend.

I went out again about 2:30 and took a slow run down Janek, then used The Reut to get to chair 2 where I did a lap, then after riding chair again skied Whiskey. Both runs are W-facing and in sun, which combined with temp that may have stayed below freezing all day did not soften much. I skied the open to public late in the day race course on the Reut, then finished my day about 3:45 with 25.8K after a cold ride up Cornice and skiing Sentinel back to the car.

Re: Kirkwood 2/16 and 2/19/2021

PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 3:18 pm
by tseeb
Kirkwood 2/19/2021 (no photos taken)
I closed up cabin, drove through some sprinkles, then got the closest parking spot to where cats and snowmobiles cross and was on Timber Creek lift a couple of minutes after 9. There was about 1/2” new that was fun to leave tracks in, but top of mountain was socked in and my goggles where getting rimed on the outside and fogging on the inside. I took a lap on The Reut where top was below the cloud layer and snow was good. I went to the Backside and took three laps there; one on Elevator Shaft and two on Cold Shoulder where I was able to find smooth snow most of the way down. But I was having a hard time seeing. I returned to front with a couple of laps on chair 2 before exiting on Whiskey Slide to Low Whiskey where it was easy to leave tracks on mostly unskied left side. I took a lap on The Reut before going into 7800 for a $3 Modelo that I drank in the pool room to stay out of nearly full dining room.

When I came out at 12:30, clouds had lifted a little although The Wall was not longer spinning. I took long pole to The Reut which I only skied once as it seemed too slow. I moved to Cornice which I skied 6 times. I didn’t like the main groomer Zachary’s, but found good smooth and steep surface on both Lookout Janek and Sentinel. I skied to chair 7 on one lap as Cornice had a long stoppage and I didn’t want to get stuck there when I was trying to quit early. I finished about 1:45 with 21 lifts and 19.7K.

It was my first time at Kirkwood in a long time when I didn’t ride The Wall. It was not running on Tuesday due to icing and while I saw it spinning early on Friday, I did not try it as top half was in cloud. I also never tried using Thunder Saddle to return from Backside as I was concerned that it could have been firm and is not usually groomed, except for the exit. It cooled off Friday night and Kirkwood and Northstar reported 5” new while Heavenly had 7” on Saturday. It would have been worth staying for a couple of hours of that, but seeing how Thursday crowds are at Heavenly, I’m not planning on skiing there Friday or Saturday this season.