Talk about good timing...
When we left Jackson Hole on Monday morning for my Tuesday doctor's appointment in Vail, I loaded my alpine gear and my backcountry gear in the car. A-Basin was looking OHHHH SOOOOO CLOOOOOSE to opening but there were no guarantees. I was hoping I wouldn't have to resort to a stealth poach of somebody's manmade snow piles, but I was going to try to get my October turns in nonetheless.
We stopped in Steamboat Springs for lunch on Monday and I checked the A-Basin blog. It said that the COO had been on his way up in a snowcat to check out the run. A few minutes later, he posted that A-Basin would, indeed, open for the 2012/2013 ski season on Wednesday, October 17.
Saved by the snowmakers!
We showed up at the parking lot and were putting on boots exactly as they opened the lift. The roar from the crowd already in the liftline rivaled anything I've heard on a powder morning. It was just cool.
Here's the sea of cars parked at 9:00am:
Me enjoying my first official turns of the 2012/2013 season:
Just a FEW people sharing the lift:
Top of the chair with a slight dusting of new snow on the surrounding peaks:
It was actually really fun. The snow was nice and it felt great to make turns on something relatively smooth.
The whole opening-day vibe was outstanding. Lots of costumes, lots of people meeting up with each other for the first time since last season, radio blasting out tunes at the bottom of the lift, people tailgating in the parking lot. I love the beginning of ski season.
Thanks to segbrown and SkiNurse for spotting me and hanging out at the top of the lift so we could make a run together. I know there were other Epicistas there but I didn't see any.
Let the season now proceed in earnest!