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  • mvhoffman
    replied
    We've had PoleCat (snowmaker) powder this year here in PA. That is really all we have gotten. Now yesterday and today it is 50 degrees and raining for the rest of the week. We have not had a winter yet here. I'm hoping that in the next month we get a cold snap enough to repair the mountains and hopefully get some real snow.

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  • Steeps
    replied
    We have a good bit of drop around here, it makes it easy when the gondola gets up 3500 ft in 12 minutes. Not so much when you get stuck on it for 45 minutes like Sunday.

    Saturday was a write-off too... stood in the rain for 45 min pre-opening to catch some powder. The bit of alpine that you could see was really good, the bottom of the hill was goo, and there were some great turns in between. There was enough snow to really let loose on a few tight tree & drop lines... had a really great shot that drops a narrow path through trees alongside a cliff, then sets you up (with a quick speed check) for a beauty drop off a what's probably a big pushed-over tree clump, dropping back into the trees. Apparently a smallish sluffy slide chased me down; I landed on the tip of it coming out of the drop and rode away. I didn't register, but my buddy behind me was yelling "Don't Stop!". No worries there..

    When we got back to the top of the gondy, we dropped to the upper-mountain chair to go hit some better snow. The wind picked up and started gusting hard, causing the chair to stop midway up. The cold got a little more bearable once our rain soaked gear turned to a wind-proof armor of ice. :P We were stuck for about 20 minutes, with gusts tilting the chair at least 10 degrees at times and blasts of whipping snow. Bit of a pain, but once we were up and I was back on my feet it was pretty cool to be out in, with the gusts changing directions suddenly and throwing you around on the cat track along the ridge. People were huddled on the ground trying to take cover. The run down was one of my favorite shots of the season, through nice skiboarder-spaced glades, knee-deep powder face shots, and enough pitch to keep a decent ripping speed (it can always be steeper, but this was good enough).

    The bottom had become a little less gluey by the time we got down, but the gondola was totally shut down due to wind. Game over. In any case, there was limited terrain open as the ski patrol couldn't bomb fast enough to keep up with the wind loading, and avalanche conditions were extreme.

    Sunday conditions were even better, as most of the snow was still there from the day before, lots more had blown in, and patrol had caught up with some of the terrain. We passed up first tracks on Dutch Wallet (requires roping down a cliff to get to), as we were a little leery of it sliding, but hit some untouched adjacent chutes. Got stuck on the gondy next run... one of the women with us was trying to bust the door open so she could jump out. She's a wicked snowboarder, so I'm sure she would have landed it fine (we weren't that high up), but it got moving before she managed it. Did another chairlift to check out Dutch Wallet (now that we'd rode similar snow), but it had been poached by then. Cut out to the stash area at the end of the ridge, and got untouched tracks on a chute I've never been in before and didn't know the entrance to. Thanks buddy!

    The gondola was done for the day at this point.. Game over again.

    Eh, at least I got some laps in last week.

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  • mvhoffman
    replied
    Originally posted by Steeps View Post
    Bagged a full 50,000 ft day last Saturday, in 6 hours. I think it's possible to do a 60,000 footer later in the season, once the resort's open 'till 4 pm. I started an hour late last week...

    There's a good storm rolling through right now, so I'll just be enjoying my new Spliffs this weekend.
    skiboarding GOALS right there... I would be lying if I said I wasn't jealous.

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  • Steeps
    replied
    Bagged a full 50,000 ft day last Saturday, in 6 hours. I think it's possible to do a 60,000 footer later in the season, once the resort's open 'till 4 pm. I started an hour late last week...

    There's a good storm rolling through right now, so I'll just be enjoying my new Spliffs this weekend.

    Leave a comment:


  • Steeps
    replied
    Just coming down from a 9 day riding bender. Have done 205,000 or better feet of vertical this season, on a trashed-out pair of Spliffs. Today was insanity, got shown a new cliff band, hit some major steep, untouched, kneedeep powder shots in a stash I know, hiked out to pow and more pow. We've had 65 cm this week, but it's been mostly in regular doses.

    Leave a comment:


  • Steeps
    replied
    It's been a fun year.

    Giving 'er on skiboards has been getting a bit of attention for sure. I've had both friends and random hill-people (lifties etc) who are keen to try them out.

    The hill closes after this weekend, but I think there's going to be a bit of a Blade Day rally on Saturday. I know a few people who can dig some old Salomons out of the closet, and I'll bring whatever I can. I'll lend out the Spliffs, put some poor sucker on my old Dynastar Twins, and might have to ride a mismatched Spliff/DLP combo for a couple of runs to free up some gear (broke my other DLP, and have one spare Spliff on hand). Might even take some Snowblades out for a rip, not sure if I ever have. Will try to remember a camera to get some shots.

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  • jjue
    replied
    Congrats ! and props for representing skiboarding on a big mountain where your the only one on the little boards !
    I agree that the Spliffs are a fantastic all around skiboard and great for off piste steeps !

    Leave a comment:


  • Steeps
    replied
    Well, yeah I know that numbers don't really mean anything, but I've been tracking runs this year just to see how much I've rode. It's been that extra motivation to get up a little earlier, put in an extra run at the end of the day, and have fun ripping speed laps. It's definitely been a skill and strength booster of a year, especially since there's been almost no powder days. 52 days in, with 2+ days left. Work's a bit slow this time of the year, so I've had some bonus mid-week afternoons to ride.

    Anyways, cutting to the vertical part... as of my last run today I've racked up

    1 MILLION VERTICAL FEET!

    this season.



    My poor beat-up pair of Spliffs saw the lion's share of that, and two full seasons before, so they may be pushing the 2 million mark overall and haven't quit. I've been patching p-tex on a near-weekly basis lately, and dang near blew an edge today, but I'd say I got my money's worth out of 'em. I'm sure they've seen 100 days of riding over the last three seasons, and the right one did most of that with a bent edge and serious core shot. Three cheers to Greco for putting out a good product and offering ace support for my destructive tendencies!


    PS: It's good to be back on the home hill; most days I get out for some runs with at least one set of friends, sometimes multiple sets. Some days, I just do solo missions and enjoy every minute of that, too!

    Leave a comment:


  • Steeps
    replied
    Well, I crushed Everest today I suppose.... did 13 gondy laps on the Horse for ~49,500 ft of vertical (official gondy elevations pending). Should have got my butt up there a little earlier to catch a full 50K, but I have a buddy who wants to drop 50 too. I had to save it for him.

    Conditions were sub-optimal, as we haven't had any fresh snow lately (4 cm in 7 days, sun the last few days). Crusty on the south slopes, a little bit of blow-in on the chutes, pretty hard on the groomers. The legs took a bit of a pounding but were still feeling solid on my last run.

    I got off work early yesterday and did a few speed runs, which probably inspired this. Best time so far was 3 gondy laps (11,400+ ft) in 1h07m. Gondy ride at full speed takes 12 minutes (had one short lift stop in that time). Apparently the best time to drop the gondy is in the 5 min and change range, so that's a goal for the season. Haven't used a stopwatch yet, but I can do ~7 min from step-off to unstrap, so it's doable on a perfect day, I think.

    All for the cause, of course...

    EDIT: Got some firmer numbers on gondy elevations and need to correct my boast down to 45,890 ft in a day. That's still the standing record for the year.
    Last edited by Steeps; 04-09-2019, 04:54 PM. Reason: Overstatement of Vertical

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  • Steeps
    replied
    Just heard about this (and am not riding today; got smacked with the flu), but here's another good vertical event for a good cause:




    29,029 vertical feet, if you're curious, according to the post.

    Leave a comment:


  • Steeps
    replied
    Still haven't made it to Whistler, I'm an Interior boy born and raised.

    I wish I was at Whitewater today... Red was freezing rain/ice fog. Everyone's clothing and gear was encased in a shell of ice. The snow was actually decent though; I got to explore the Chute Show area a bit.

    Whitewater tomorrow though... it's dumping hard so I won't bother driving out to Red when Whitewater's 20 minutes away. Conditions were good on Friday and should be epic tomorrow. I'm going to have to get up early and up the hill; the locals are pretty nutty about powder days, and you need to be there at least a 1/2 hour before opening to get a good parking spot and position in line. Looking forward to the drops down Terra Ratta and powder off the Trash Traverse.

    Leave a comment:


  • Scribbler
    replied
    Just did my first road trip to hit the BC interior ski hills - did Whitewater, Red, Baldy and Apex in 5 days.

    Didn't hit anything close to this vertical, but the snow was unlike anything I'd ever skied. At Mt. baldy, there were probably less than 70 people on the entire hill, and 50 of those were a school group that left after lunch - at 3pm there was still untracked powder in the glades.

    Much as I love whistler, the interior was something else. Highly recommend it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Fedfan
    replied
    Originally posted by Steeps View Post
    This may be a local obsession.... just saw this on Red's website:



    That dude's badass. My dad sold his downhill mountain bike and stopped hucking 30 ft gaps when he turned 60, this guy's upping the ante.
    JJue, looks like the fella's rockin' a Tipsy Elves suit!

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

    Leave a comment:


  • Bad Wolf
    replied
    Racking up vert on your own is cool too. One of my best days on the slopes was when I dropped off the family at the airport to visit Grandma, drove three hours to Sunrise, then lapped the mountain from first to last chair without taking a break. Not that I don't enjoy friends and family, but sometimes it's OK to be selfish and go it alone. No waiting, or being waited on, just go at your own pace.

    Leave a comment:


  • Steeps
    replied
    Originally posted by Wookie View Post
    The core of my point was to look beyond the stats and enjoy your time on the hill. We ride a lot with other families and friends and I generally have the most fun with those people that are less worried about getting maximum runs, vertical, time, etc.. My favorite moments on the hill come from slowing down, meeting people, and enjoying the journey as much as the destination.
    You're absolutely right. I grew up skiing with the family, and friends of the family, and friends... always a good pack of us ripping it up. It was a lot of fun for sure! Great way to spend the weekends. I'd trade the powder (well, some of it...) for those days.

    Unfortunately, this year I'm a new town for school with no friends (yet) and end up riding alone pretty much all the time. I'll take the odd lap with someone I meet on the chair, but so far haven't met any regular riding buddies. It's still great getting out on the snow, but it's certainly less motivating. Working at upping my skills and stamina helps keep me engaged with the sport and moving forward, instead of getting lazy and going home early.

    Last year I was at a new hill, but moved in with a bunch of international ski bums, and had a whole circle of riders of every level to shred with. Even when I went up solo, it usually only took a couple of runs to meet someone I knew. And big vertical last year was inevitably a sign of a great powder day. Keeping an eye on the weekend's vertical is also a really good reason to not be hung over.

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