Well, let’s be blunt. Whitewater had a better season last year (2011-2012) than it has had this season (2012-2013).
After getting large quantities of powder before New Year’s Day, 2013, with an especially epic day or two before Christmas, the January dry spell lasted well into February. It kept snowing a few inches here and there, but the early season which looked so wonderful evaporated. Our fluffy 100” base, so full of air, settled and settled some more. Despite the small snow flurries (which admittedly, some ski areas would be delighted to have), it settled to a low of 84” before starting to recover.
For the Coldsmoke Powder Fest in late February, we were blessed with some very nice snow to justify the name of the event. There had not been any rain, so there was no crust, and the skiing was excellent, although the lift lines were ugly.
Then, in early March, it happened. Rain all the way to the top. Bleah. I stayed home one entire weekend. I don’t like to ski in the rain. Bleah, again.
Fortunately, the weather has changed again, and winter has returned, at least at Whitewater altitudes.
The bad news: The rain has frozen into a nasty crust.
The good news: It’s covered.
Saturday, March 16, it started to snow, and by Sunday morning, Whitewater had 9” of light and dry. You still felt the crust (too often), but the powder was good and a little speed kept you off the bottom.
After Sunday, it continued to snow. With 9" overnight and a foot in the last 24 hours on Thursday morning, I sent the "Gone Skiing" e-mail to the office.
My employer met me up at the ski area. We discussed engineering projects in progress over lunch. But not on the chair.
After he left, I headed for Catch Basin at about 2:00 in the afternoon. It had been closed most of the day for avy control, and there were several small runs in it caused by the bombs. Still it wasn't bad, and where the debris wasn't, it was essentially bottomless, although the light was very flat, making it difficult to see drops.
A random snowboarder in Catch Basin:
Then I worked my way out past Catch Basin. The first three slots in the trees had bomb debris in them. The fourth had a track in it. The fifth had none, so I put one there. If you squint, you can see it.
Sadly, April 7 is the last day. Whitewater has had 400+" of snow so far this season, and the base is over 115". Not a bad way to end, but too soon.