Resort and backcountry skiing and snowboarding in the western US and Canada, including our famous reader-submitted No-Bull Snow Reports.
Wed Feb 17, 2021 9:40 pm
A long, cold day at Heavenly where I loaded Gunbarrel at 8:15 - 15 minutes before scheduled holiday week opening and 45 minutes before usual weekday opening. A friend I used to work with and his wife were in chair behind me going up and I skied with them on top level of CA until about 9:45 when they went home due to sore knees and new puppy. It was cloudy enough over the top that we rode and skied Canyon a few times vs. Sky where top was more often in clouds and there was more wind from the N.
It was also windy enough the gondola did not run and Tamarack had closed when I went under it about 3:30. A friend who recently moved to Minden and met in NV in mid-morning. We rode Tamarack 3 times after lunch break and it was running a little slow. I also got him into Milky Way Bowl, where I had found a long line of steep windsift earlier and Dipper Bowl where there was nice windsift before it got steep and a little bumpy and confined. He liked North Bowl (marked expert only) enough to repeat it even though it's a 20 min lap with 15 minute chair. I took one run down Bill's into Mott Canyon and found good snow and a few people who should not have been there. Another highlight was Ridge Bowl which was groomed and nearly unskied, both early and late in day.
I skied Waterfall on my way down CA and saw how good SW-facing Maggie’s Swing looked. Since line was already long exiting creek area, I rode Powder Bowl and ski Maggie’s Swing which was great, especially the right edge. After waiting in a moderate line for slow Groove chair, I skied Advanced Roundabout into a very busy part of Roundabout that I got out of by skiing firm and steep Pistol. I ended within a foot of my car at 4:05 with 29 lifts and 33K. It was cold enough all day that it felt warm going into 58F cabin after skiing.
- Trees blasted with wind driven snow and high peaks S of Heavenly.
- View of lake not very far from previous picture
- My SUV is 3rd in this line between bottom on East Bowl and the Tram. I was able to ski edge of parking lot to it.
Thu Feb 18, 2021 5:34 pm
So upper half of Heavenly's elevation range escaped Monday's rain?
Thu Feb 18, 2021 6:48 pm
I don't think precipitation got to Heavenly on Monday. Sometimes it works out being E and in the rain shadow of the Crest. I rode lift with someone on Wednesdaywho said the snow plastered on the windward side of trees is from last week's storm.
Heavenly, Thursday 2/18/2021
I dressed warmer as I did not want to be cold and was way too warm when I skied Killibrew Canyon for the first time this season. I alternated removing helmet and jacket on my three AM Mott lift rides. This was on way into NV after skiing upper CA about 5 times including Ridge Bowl, Sky Chute and Ellie's from Liz's to Ellie's Swing. The top of Liz's and much longer top of Ellie's both are still showing a lot of rocks from wind-stripping. I got closest parking spot to bottom of East Bowl and started about 9:15.
On my way to NV, I got to A, the highest gate into Killibrew and skied Outer Limits, the boundary line, but snow quickly got heavy and there were a lot of big rocks to avoid so I traversed to Pipeline which skied well although I had to go to right of rock in choke that is often mostly covered or more open to left. The higher exit traverse from Killibrew was OK. I then skied Bill's and the left side of the Y from Mott chair before skiing to Stagecoach base where it was starting to cool off and wind was picking up. From top of Stagecoach, I took a couple of laps on Olympic, skiing mostly overlooked Cloud 9, then next skiing nice E-facing groomer down to Dipper base where lines were long, but singles moved 2-3 times the speed of other lines. From top of Dipper, I had to bypass Milky Way Bowl to get to gate B and skied Stateline Chute where it had started snowing and entrance was a little hard to find. Snow was great, but middle of chute had some narrow spots between trees. After riding Mott chair, I got high enough to get into right side of the Y which was excellent, smooth packed powder after a nasty entrance. For anyone counting, that is 5 laps into Mott including 2 Killibrew. I had longer line on Dipper, but liftee was still favoring singles so it was only about 5 minutes. I skied to CA via CA Trail and Maggie's Canyon, another first for this year. It either needed more traffic to pack it down or less traversing at there were some decent powder shots on left/N-facing wall interrupted by traverses. I took a couple of laps on both Powder Bowl and Canyon chair where lines were barely under my toleration limits and growing. I skied to CA base after 2 via Advanced and regular Roundabout and East Bowl. I finished sandwich at the car and started on a beer and ate my cookies before sharing tram with two other groups (6 people total in 50-passenger tram including operator) about 2:30. It looked like big party was going to happen at huge house up the hill from Heavenly base as I thought I saw uniformed security and there were 2-3 tents on entrance driveway.
I had swapped from 185 cm x 94 mm all-round skis to 178 cm x 88 mm fast turners and braved the firm and moguled Face twice skiing to Gunbarrel chair. The lowest third of Gunbarrel was closed. The Face/East Bowl was hard to ski smoothly, but it was a good test for my back which has improved. For my last run, I skied Patsy's and not liking lines on Powder Bowl or Groove (to get to Advanced Roundabout), I skated and poled into regular Roundabout which was less busy than when I did it later on previous day. I cut across top of Pistol and skied a bit of Gunbarrel which was very difficult with steep firm bumps and a little better than marginal coverage. I quit at 3:20 with over 27K.