Tuesday, July 28, 2009
The weather immediately before the weekend was rather ick to say the least, but by Sat 25th it was clear blue skies and predicted to be that way for a few days. Both sides had a some freshies, it was cool and clear and the snow was nice off trail - so plenty of room for the weekend masses to spread around. (good spots of stash if you knew where to look too) Of note, there were obvious mini avo triggers close to the trails. Eg: Sisters, Amphitheatre, Hamiltons... some self triggered and some patrol triggered. Impressive booms of avalanche work continued in the morning.
The Spy/Elan Jib Nat's were on in the terrain park and I spent a couple of hours here, peeled back to a Tshirt and thermal under sunny skies. I was there to support an extended family member and a few other mates who had entered. I tell ya there is a hot new generation of skiers and boarders coming through, keep an eye out for them in the months years to come.
Into Sunday - cool clear and blue skies once again - stoked. Did anyone notice the crazy cloud over Taranaki way in the morning? It was weird - I wish I got a picture! Bit firmer than the day before and still plenty of people to negotiate round. But we spent another full day at Turoa pausing at the Giant cafe right before the lifts closed admiring the sun over the water on the west coast and soaking it all in before the last run of the day.
Monday - Groundhog day! I had booked this day off work ages ago, not expecting to get 3 bluebird days in. Another firm day at Turoa, and another big day. Goggle tan starting to take full effect... whoops, I hope the new sunscreen works a bit better than the old one...
Retro GS at Turoa next weekend - see you there.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Skiers at Turoa
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
If ever there was a day to say "if you weren't here you missed it" - it was Sunday at Whakapapa. I thought winter08 had some pretty epic powder days for our wee rock, but Sunday had to be the driest, softest, freshest I have ever been in. It was dumping while we were there too, and there's nothing quite like a big fresh layer of snow loading up your lap as you ride the chair.
Sunday on the Waterfall Express Chair
As hoped the upper mountain was all go for the first weekend of the holidays. On Sunday the Rock Garden was going off, Staircase was full, bypass round the Waterfall was all go, as was down the Waterfalls. Vis during the snowstorm was not the greatest, with soft landings all over that didn't matter. From the chair the only way we could tell the difference between skiers and boarders was the way their body was facing, as you couldn't see anything from their knees down.
RAL Snow School Instructor gets amongst it
The Waterfall T was open and this was where we stayed. There was no on or off trail, just snow! Even the trail markers were near buried. My friend did a flying squirrel at one point and her skis shot through the soft snow out of sight. Digging them out, we were up to our thighs in what can best be described as 'air' - and this was right by the T Bar line.
Monday we returned to Whakapapa, but unfortunately it had crusted over like vogels toast off trail. The sun was out and all the families had arrived for the school holidays. Te Heu Heu Valley was open so there more more groomed trails to spread around on. Add in our first day at Turoa and we got 3 out of 3 days, yay.
Monday - view up the Staircase
Monday - Valley T, ready to go
Saturday morning at Turoa
Friday, July 3, 2009
This morning we woke to the news that the Desert Road closed overnight. Volcano Watch gives us a peek of the view and what is to come. Enjoy.