Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

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

Moderator: Tony Crocker

Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby Admin » Sun Jun 19, 2011 11:28 am

Day 99: Juneuary.

This string of weather we're having is nothing short of incredible and today that meant fresh snowfall just three days shy of the summer solstice.Today is setting a record for both the coldest and wettest June 19th in Salt Lake City history. It's pouring down here in the Valley by Utah standards, but it's snowing up high.

Lots of "Gee, I'm not too sure about this..." comments were exchanged amongst friends and strangers alike as we booted up in the rain in the parking lot. Telejon wasn't even sure that they'd open today. Really, how many times do you see this in Utah?

01 snowbird inside tram 110619.jpg
Inside the first tram of the day


Telejon, Bobby Danger and I boarded the first tram of the day with only 16 others (and about half of us know each other as regulars) and there wouldn't be many more on the hill the whole morning. As if by magic, however, the rain turned to snow between Tram towers 1 and 2 and the snow never let up in intensity. We had a good 2-3 inches already, even more in some places by mid-morning and in part due to the coating of wet snow, and probably because it also started as rain last night the base never froze solid. This meant that we had a creamy surface atop a supportable yet spongy base. For the third week of June it skied remarkably well.

02 snowbird little cloud snowfall 110619.jpg
Heavy snowfall at the bottom of Little Cloud


03 snowbird little cloud snowfall 110619.jpg
Little Cloud Bowl looks more like winter than summer


04 snowbird little cloud skis 110619.jpg
Snow accumulating on my skis and poles


With such a small clientele we never skied tracked snow all day. Around 10 a.m. they closed the Tram because the wet haul cable was slipping, so those of us already on the hill riding the Mineral Basin Express and Little Cloud chairs were the only ones there. All three of us in our group, however, were soaked right through -- my pants (I should've worn my hard shells), Bobby's pants and the back of Jon's neck and shoulders.

We probably had a half dozen or more runs by the time we made our last run down Jaws. Untracked and smooth, I dropped in first when the whole hill gave way on my first turn, cleaning all of the new snow out of Jaws. That stuff was heavy and it took all I could do to get out of the moving slope after my own sluff caught up to me and started to take me for a ride. The same thing happened to both Bobby and Telejon as we each skied a different line in the Upper Cirque.

By the time I reached the base the snow level had arrived there as well. Even though the snowfall shows no sign of relenting (they're now expecting about a foot or so by the time it's done tonight) we all called it a day by 10:30 a.m. due to the soaking, at least that's what we all decided on that last run. I'm not sure if they reopened the Tram or not but we split up at mid-mountain and I didn't see the other two in the parking lot as I hurriedly removed my boots and drove home to get out of my wet clothes and make a hot chocolate...in the third week of June!

"Spring" should finally arrive here this week. Riding our weather roller coaster it's supposed to hit 90ºF in Salt Lake City by Thursday which means it'll be pushing 70ºF on the hill, and we lost a good three to four feet of snow this week in places, something made obvious by large rocky ridges now exposed that you couldn't even see last week. In some places crevasse-like cracks are opening as the snowpack's own weight pulls it down the hill. The cornice has now pulled back from the Upper Cirque ridgeline such that the snow in Jaws now starts as a platform some three or four feet below the rocks that form the ridge. Conditions are literally changing by the minute.
Image

Image
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 10021
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 9:32 am
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby mbaydala » Sun Jun 19, 2011 4:07 pm

Tram re-opened at 10:10, got aboard and headed to Little Cloud where I spent the morning. It was so good that I woke up the friends in PC who were a bit hungover and told them to get there asses over there. They were far from disappointed... Left the Bird around 12:45 having gained close to 10lbs of water weight. Here are some photos from the day.


https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2167362943551.135247.1231002422&l=95fc2b706e
Not sure I have enough footage for a video, but I will give it a shot a bit later.
User avatar
mbaydala
 
Posts: 349
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:49 pm
Location: Park City, Utah UT - Avatar: Alta Utah
Location: Rockville Centre, New York

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby q » Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:12 am

Incredible!
Q
User avatar
q
 
Posts: 314
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2007 7:59 am
Location: Aberdeen, Scotland - Avatar: Primer Bowl, Loveland, CO

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby Bobby Danger » Mon Jun 20, 2011 6:45 am

insta-set snow at the rate it was falling and the density weight it was hitting the ground and setting up at the same time . made for really consistent skiing . don't know what it was like to ski any of it tracked cause there were no tracks anywhere we skied all morning. that was the tale of two completely different days (seasons ) in one weekend , summer skiing on sat. and winter on sun. . jon and i headed our ways just above adager by this time snowbird had started running the tram again ,so i hung out at the top of adager for awhile to see if anyone had boarded the tram and low and behold it had people on it . i hung out just alittle longer debating if i should leave, it's snowing hard to the bottom of snowbird by now. it was snowing hard down to white pine parking area by now well below the base area . (big juicy flakes)
Bobby Danger
 
Posts: 598
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 6:08 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby rfarren » Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:49 am

Do you guys think the snow will ever completely melt this summer?
Rob
User avatar
rfarren
 
Posts: 2135
Joined: Mon Dec 24, 2007 4:02 pm
Location: New York City

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby Marc_C » Mon Jun 20, 2011 9:16 am

rfarren wrote:Do you guys think the snow will ever completely melt this summer?

If it's a normal temperature profile, yes. Sure, there's still a ton for this time of year, thanks to a very cool and very wet spring, but after today, we're looking at valley temps in the 80's and 90's for the next 7 - 10 days. Those temps can easily translate into a 12" per day melt rate in the mountains. That's not to say there won't be possibly significant remainders in August in protected, north facing areas subject to lots of blow-in - something like Gunsight at Alta - but most will likely melt. There may be a sorry patch or two here and there remaining in September, but I also wouldn't be surprised if there's nothing.

One example from a few years ago was, during an average snow year, Snowbird was planning on their usual Memorial Day closing (what they always shoot for - they go into June only if conditions allow). Everything was great until the 3rd week of May when we very suddenly went into the upper 90's in the valley for over a week. Snowbird pulled the plug on the season the Thursday of that week and didn't even open for the 3rd weekend that May.

All we can say for certain is that things will be changing very rapidly over the next 3 weeks.
-marc
User avatar
Marc_C
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2005 10:32 am
Location: A Sandy place south of a Great Lake

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby mbaydala » Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:15 am

Here is the video
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O7-2C8oZ2MQ[/youtube]
User avatar
mbaydala
 
Posts: 349
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:49 pm
Location: Park City, Utah UT - Avatar: Alta Utah
Location: Rockville Centre, New York

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby berkshireskier » Mon Jun 20, 2011 2:24 pm

mbaydala wrote:Here is the video
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O7-2C8oZ2MQ[/youtube]

Incredible.............for June 19 (or really any time of the year). But..........isn't it golf season out there yet?? :rotfl:
berkshireskier
 
Posts: 463
Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:20 pm
Location: Western Massachusetts

Re: Snowbird, UT 6/19/11

Postby Marc_C » Mon Jun 20, 2011 5:36 pm

berkshireskier wrote:But..........isn't it golf season out there yet?? :rotfl:

Yes. 3500' lower*, in the valley. MTB and climbing season as well river running.

*: 6400' lower if you're counting from the summit of Hidden Peak at the Bird.
-marc
User avatar
Marc_C
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2005 10:32 am
Location: A Sandy place south of a Great Lake


Return to Western North America

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 135 guests


All content herein copyright © 1999-2017 First Tracks!! Online Media

Forums Terms & Conditions of Use

cron