It was one of those OMG ski days. Big storm yesterday and last night, with around 6-8 inches of snow. Temps were cold up on Hood so not only was it a dump, it was a powder dump, of the sort we don’t get much of in this part of the Cascades. And, being that it was President’s Day weekend, plus Meadows was promising a bluebird day….well, let’s just say that a good chunk of Portland, Vancouver, and who knows from where-all-else were up on the Mountain. Timberline filled up slowly, and it was gratifying to see that most of the traffic didn’t turn off on Timberline Road….nonetheless, Timberline got full.
And why were so many people into playing into the snow today?
Because of snow like this:
Squeaky, creamy, fine-grained dry snow. Snow that flowed and spilled rather than lumped, clumped and grabbed. Still heavy, and after a lot of people skied it, chundered up and demanding on legs and hips.
DH and I lost track of the number of runs while we were skiing, though I’m pretty sure we got at least nine runs in. All four major runs on Jeff Flood, with an encore on long Kruser by going to the top of Norman and skiing down (which is pretty dang close to two miles, if not two miles already, counts as two). Then three more runs on Norman, all of them fast.
The Mile wasn’t open, so lift lines were busy. It wasn’t a matter of visibility as much as it was storm recovery. The chairlift tower wheels got coated with rime ice, which required this:
We saw at least four guys working on lift towers; there may have been more. On one ride up Norman we rode with a Ski Patroller and he said conditions had been horrible yesterday. Lovely snow, but storming, cold, and strong wind, with wind chills below zero F. At one point a call came across his radio asking for six more Patrollers to ride up to the top on the snow cat to work on the Mile. There’s some epic tales about managing conditions on Hood; I’ve only heard a few but from what I’ve heard…
In any case, we had a lovely if crowded ski day. Toward the end we actually got to see this, but not for long. Ah. Yes. Bliss.