Me and my wife took the chance to ski Sun Valley again with their early bird deal for $79.95 lodge+lift tickets each. We had a hard time having reservations done and had to stay in one room Saturday night and then move to another room for Sunday and Monday nights.
We got there Saturday after 3hrs trip from Boise, around 10:30, we were on the lift by 11. There was absolutely no crowd even during the weekend days, so no lift lines at all, you would get to the chair as soon as you get on the lift and that was great! Lots of parking available as well. The lodge was kind full on the first day around 4 pm.
The now condition on Saturday and Sunday were tracked, no new snow, a few untracked lines early morning on Sunday but that was it. Even though the snow was great, soft not ice, no hardpack... so conditions were great for on piste skiers and that's where I spent most of my time with my wife, I would adventure on the side of the piste, since Sun Valley offers that a lot, there is a lot of places to follow piste terrain on the side to get some soft snow and some untracked conditions.
Then the huge storm came on Sunday night, we got around 8 inches overnight and it didn't stop snowing the entire day on Monday! So I was probably skiing 10 in of fresh, untracked snow during most of the day on Monday. Sometimes it was just too much for me and my P98 I guess. First I felt in one of the bowls on my third turn... it was almost chest deep at the time and I would never click back on my skis... I had to climb back using my skis for about 25 yards I guess! :-( Not enough I decided to go off piste at some point doing a shortcut from a grommed green run to a trail down the mountain... again lost one of my skis and had to slide down 20 yards until I reached a flat spot where I was able to click back on the skis!
Monday we were able to hear what was probably the ski patrol doing avalanche control with explosives, around 10am I guess, we were on the lift chair and we heard boomm and then what sounds like an avalanche! We couldn't see anything but I was pretty sure that was it!
All the picture bellow are from Monday, I have no pictures in deep pow since my wife was the photographer and she won't get close to those areas. All the pictures are from what was supposed to be green grommed terrain, but not quite that on Monday!
Tuesday it was supposed to get colder but at least we would see some sun light. It's hard this time of the year, the warm springs area was terrible and cold, doesn't get much sun if any during the whole day, but it ended up being a nice sunny day and not cold! I was still able to find great tracked soft snow that day... since there was almost no one in the mountain Monday or Tuesday... again, pretty much just the lift operator to talk to you!
Unfortunately we had to go back home Tuesday after lunch! :-( But it was a great 4 day trip indeed! The only thing that upsets me is the the city Ketchum just stops at 6pm. So if you plan on having a good day skiing, go back to the lodge take a shower and go downtown to walk, have dinner and see the stores... not a chance! We ended up having dinner 3 tomes at the Bald Mountain Pizza and Pasta in the resort village, great restaurant, great people! Breakfast everyday at Starbucks :-) was really upset that Sun Valley deli was closed, they were kinda working on renovation in the whole building where the deli is located!
Will be going back February or January since I got another great deal on living social! :-)
Overall the resort conditions are great! It has enough snow coverage, for on and off piste skiing, right now 100% of the terrain is open, by the time the right side of the warm springs area were closed and some other terrain around the resort, but it had like 80% open.
Ridge line above the bowls.. pretty scary, fog, windy and lots of snow, it was hard to see the trail to cross over from one side to the other.
Broadway, coming down from the blue bowl above and heading to Seattle Ridge chair lift
No idea where that was... but it was another grommed run, trying to ski on the edge of the run to get some powder!
Same as above.
By the end of the day the grommers started to look more like grommers
Seattle ridge area...
Upper College going down to River Run lodge... still a long way to go!
That might still be the upper college
No idea! But again, this was supposed to be grommed terrain
That was on Tuesday, no new snow but still lots of good tracked soft snow. Hour Glass on Seattle Ridge
Again Hour Glass on Seattle Ridge
Edited by mfa81 - 12/21/12 at 1:09pm