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The 2022 - 2023 Ski Season Thread


Skivt2
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Saddleback is reporting 100% open! Assume this is the first NE area to do so this season.

And, SLoaf has opened Brackett Basin which is kind of crazy. Folks on social media say that they are done a lot of work which I interpret as cleaning out a lot of the undergrowth.

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25 minutes ago, Angus said:

Saddleback is reporting 100% open! Assume this is the first NE area to do so this season.

And, SLoaf has opened Brackett Basin which is kind of crazy. Folks on social media say that they are done a lot of work which I interpret as cleaning out a lot of the undergrowth.

wish more mountains would take the saddleback/mrg approach of dropping ropes at the earliest opportunity. Ski patrol culture has something to do with it and in my experience the patrol at saddleback are skiers. A lot of other patrols are first responder types first, skiers second. Not taking shots at patrols, just an observation. 

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wish more mountains would take the saddleback/mrg approach of dropping ropes at the earliest opportunity. Ski patrol culture has something to do with it and in my experience the patrol at saddleback are skiers. A lot of other patrols are first responder types first, skiers second. Not taking shots at patrols, just an observation. 

Jay has been very aggressive with dropping ropes this year. More so than I’ve seen in the past few seasons. I’m attributing it to how bad a season it’s been so far.


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@powderfreakwould have to confirm but I think he always references 40" at the mansfield snowstake as his good-to-go indicator for skiing in the woods. IMO just not worth skiing in marginal conditions in the woods where you risk tearing up a knee or worse. and the mansfield stake was at 23" yesterday. As observed, western Maine seems to have been able to retain and add to their snow depths this season relative to the rest of New England

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3 hours ago, Angus said:

@powderfreakwould have to confirm but I think he always references 40" at the mansfield snowstake as his good-to-go indicator for skiing in the woods. IMO just not worth skiing in marginal conditions in the woods where you risk tearing up a knee or worse. and the mansfield stake was at 23" yesterday. As observed, western Maine seems to have been able to retain and add to their snow depths this season relative to the rest of New England

Yeah 40" is a good ballpark reading for woods skiing.  Of course there are a lot of factors, most importantly is snow water equivalent (SWE) or just LE in the snowpack.  Next up would be type of terrain, low angle vs. steep and additionally how well it is maintained for glade skiing (if at all).

Today was the first day I skied in the woods and the Stake only grew a few inches to 26" or 27" I think, despite the 6-7" storm total through this afternoon (might have grabbed another inch or so this evening). 

The upper elevation, low angle woods were more than ready despite the stake value.  Old-timer and wise skiers and legendary ski patrollers always use 40" as the rough baseline, but the water in the snowpack really matters.  That is what supports the skier/rider above the ground and forms the frozen barrier between you and the ground.  More so than inches of snow, but we measure inches of snow much more easily and therefor it's a good rough estimate.

This current snowpack (or icepack) is rock hard and stout.  You will not break through it in any way.  The last snow/sleet/freezing rain event added significant QPF that almost entirely froze in the snowpack before this system came along.  If you don't see a rock, you will not hit a rock... because it's covered in ice.  It can be a slick layer but today's snowfall was just dense enough to bond well.  It also fluffed up a bit.  Good snow growth in a marginal profile and we came out on the right side of it.

Anyway, 40" of upslope or lake effect fluff on 1.5" of water at 25-30:1 ratios is a much different beast than like 4" (maybe more?) of SWE/LE in 27" of "snowpack" (more like block of ice with fresh snow on top).  Right now we have the latter.  

I liked a 4-8" snowfall, given the surface temperatures.  5-10" higher elevations.  The forecast was for a decent QPF event despite temperatures.  A widespread 0.50"< SWE event for the region.

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Took in a few runs this morning at Wildcat, good to be back on the hill. Compared to early December, they have opened up most of the mountain and conditions were quite nice. By 10am the Saturday crowd had the lift lines approaching 10 minutes and I headed home and will check it out again tomorrow or next weekend. Didn't get any pictures, but the Presidential Range is definitely looking winterish!

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skinned up WaWa a couple of times this AM. Their policy is off the hill when they start loading the lifts which on weekends is 7:30, between feeding and walking the dog and drive time, that makes for an early morning! Anyway, it was great to have snow on the trees and the natural snow mixed with the man-made base was nice. I pulled out of the parking lot at 7:34 and the cars were backed up from about a quarter mile on rt. 140 ... or a mile plus trying to get into the main parking lot!

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57 minutes ago, Angus said:

skinned up WaWa a couple of times this AM. Their policy is off the hill when they start loading the lifts which on weekends is 7:30, between feeding and walking the dog and drive time, that makes for an early morning! Anyway, it was great to have snow on the trees and the natural snow mixed with the man-made base was nice. I pulled out of the parking lot at 7:34 and the cars were backed up from about a quarter mile on rt. 140 ... or a mile plus trying to get into the main parking lot!

Yup.  A weekend morning after snow falls it can be rough to get into.   

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Jay was good yesterday. First couple runs were awesome down exhibition and then the woods next door. Lower angle stuff was definitely better but all in all it wasn’t bad considering the low snowfall so far. We tried our one tram run but we waited 30 mins to make it to the door and then they held for 15 mins, finally telling us it was closed.  Kick in the sack for sure. Patrol opened a lot of questionable covered terrain but I like the MRG style anyway so it was fine, skis survived. 
 

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Heavenly? 
I'm headed out next weekend.  Hoping the ridge breaks down a bit toward the end of the month.   How was it?

Yes..the snow is phenomenal. Really great conditions. The lift lines were horrendous (as expected on a Saturday following 5 weeks of snowfall). Hoping the weekdays are better. Plan on spending a day at either Kirkwood or squaw , so I’ll see how they compare.


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Jay was good yesterday. First couple runs were awesome down exhibition and then the woods next door. Lower angle stuff was definitely better but all in all it wasn’t bad considering the low snowfall so far. We tried our one tram run but we waited 30 mins to make it to the door and then they held for 15 mins, finally telling us it was closed.  Kick in the sack for sure. Patrol opened a lot of questionable covered terrain but I like the MRG style anyway so it was fine, skis survived. 
 
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They’ve been crazy aggressive with terrain this year. Don’t know if it has to do with new ownership or just a bad snow year. I also saw they list jfk and wedelmsster as being blown in addition to ullrs. I’m assuming that is just the entrances and drop ins (they are notoriously sketchy) but that is something new this year. I’m interested to see where they go after ullrs with snowmaking. That is traditionally one of their last, besides the lower mountain greens on tramside. Years ago, they actually blew can am and Vermonter.

I’ve heard from reliable sources they will be opening their checkbook big time in the summer and next season.


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Was able to get out and ski Montage for four hours this morning. Conditions and coverage were far better than I expected given the warm weather we’ve had here in the mid-Atlantic. They also have some interesting trails-pretty steep on the lower mountain (albeit only about 500 vertical, the top 500 vertical is low intermediate). 
 

Unfortunately won’t be able to ski for nearly  a month as I’ll be in Miami for two weekends and then Austin. 
 

I’ll definitely try to ski the weekend of 2/17 if possible and then I’m heading to Tremblant the last weekend of the month. Hard to believe it almost February and I only have 8 days in. 

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8 hours ago, LongBeachSurfFreak said:

Had to have been a record crowd yesterday at Stratton. I have never seen cars parked for a mile down some of the access roads. And of course with the crowds everything skied off quick. Ended up having less snow and more sleet then forecast with the first storm. On to round 2.

Friend stopped by earlier that works there and said definitely busiest of the year. 10k+ yesterday.  I dont know, maybe everyone thought it was 12"+of fresh as opposed 4-5 of sleet/snow?

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10 minutes ago, backedgeapproaching said:

Friend stopped by earlier that works there and said definitely busiest of the year. 10k+ yesterday.  I dont know, maybe everyone thought it was 12"+of fresh as opposed 4-5 of sleet/snow?

That’s was my thinking. Normal people aren’t watching the dual pol and cams obsessively, checking precip types and just assumed 8-10” of snow had fallen not 2” of sleet and 2” of snow. The trees up high are gorgeous with some of the best rime In years 

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Killington was fun today. No lines. They opened Outer limits with a ton of snow guns962752d777ad27a8dddbc7cb31bcf21c.jpg
going. It was so fun! Definitely get the burn. Killington also had a ton of natural trails open that were pretty thin. My skis survived too lol. Most of the brown is leaves and grass. Not as bad as it looks. The 11” really helped conditions but that boiler plate lurks beneath and shows is ugly face in places. 69e2c43b6b7a96c69daf4c68a1be54dc.jpg
7b2fc2187b17a6499af2a0a25e049d0a.jpg


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Started snowing earlier, I think the real WAA burst is over up here.  Snow growth is good, but S.VT/S.NH and adjacent Berks & ORH hills look to get some solid QPF as the anomalously moist and mild air (Pacific origin?) runs into the boundary zone.  The cold from the north just barely turns the region snowy.  It is a very warm month, usually frigid.  This year is just persistent marginal temperatures.

 

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20 minutes ago, powderfreak said:

Started snowing earlier, I think the real WAA burst is over up here.  Snow growth is good, but S.VT/S.NH and adjacent Berks & ORH hills look to get some solid QPF as the anomalously moist and mild air (Pacific origin?) runs into the boundary zone.  The cold from the north just barely turns the region snowy.  It is a very warm month, usually frigid.  This year is just persistent marginal temperatures.

 

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Yeah. 1.5” here so far. I’d like some colder temps to freeze up the water some bit I’m just happy to be seeing some snow finally. 

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Black was awesome yesterday. Most woods are open. I'd say 75% of the woods and 25% of ungroomed trails still had 6-8" of untracked in them from Friday.  Definitely a special place. Kiddo is finally big enough for the "pack" if she wears an oversized snow suit and I couple of other adjustments. It allowed for some serious progressing and I was able to let her go free a couple of times. Im also sadly realizing the days of her skiing between my skis are over.

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