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Colorado Ski Tour [from TX, late Dec to early Jan] - Page 8

post #211 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post

Breakable crust, where you can punch down through the firm layer into softer snow, is about the toughest condition that exists to ski well. 
Are you saying that this skis well or is the toughest condition to ski well? Guess I'll just have to get some sharp edges if it hasn't snowed in a while.
post #212 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsessedtxskier View Post


Are you saying that this skis well or is the toughest condition to ski well? Guess I'll just have to get some sharp edges if it hasn't snowed in a while.

 

He's saying it's the hardest condition to ski well. Sharp edges won't help you much with crust, it's so difficult to ski because you can often stay on top for a few turns and then you break through which then creates a rapid deceleration. In other words, it's very inconsistent. Generally people try to ski it in a way that they consistently break through. You generally see it a day or two after a storm.     

post #213 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post

He's saying it's the hardest condition to ski well. Sharp edges won't help you much with crust, it's so difficult to ski because you can often stay on top for a few turns and then you break through which then creates a rapid deceleration. In other words, it's very inconsistent. Generally people try to ski it in a way that they consistently break through. You generally see it a day or two after a storm.     

Ok, I understand the sensation... Like coming out of well sheltered fast skiing snow into slush maybe? Still sounds way better than ice.
post #214 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post
 

Breakable crust, where you can punch down through the firm layer into softer snow, is about the toughest condition that exists to ski well. 

 

It sucks.

 

My husband has his technique down for this - he intentionally breaks through and then skis it like an icebreaker ship. For this, you must 1) have a lot of mass and 2) be willing to point 'em and 3) have a hell of a lot of confidence that it will work.

 

I curse a lot and try to escape as quickly as possible.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by obsessedtxskier View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post

He's saying it's the hardest condition to ski well. Sharp edges won't help you much with crust, it's so difficult to ski because you can often stay on top for a few turns and then you break through which then creates a rapid deceleration. In other words, it's very inconsistent. Generally people try to ski it in a way that they consistently break through. You generally see it a day or two after a storm.     

Ok, I understand the sensation... Like coming out of well sheltered fast skiing snow into slush maybe? Still sounds way better than ice.

 

No, you don't understand the sensation.

 

Sort of related, sort of not - Today we hiked up the Back 9 at Breck to Broadway. It was my first time up there. Snow conditions at Breck have been even more variable than usual - in addition to heavy snow over light snow, there are apparently pockets of air (? may have misunderstood) and by variable they mean, dig a pit here, then dig a pit ten feet away, and you'll get completely different findings. Consequently, we've been avoiding areas where absolutely no one has skied yet this season. We thought it likely that someone had been up and skied Broadway already, doing the potentially knee-damaging consolidation work for us. We were wrong. The rest of the group got through okay, but I crashed and burned I think four times, bad news. Reminded me of when I lost skis in Silverton. Except I was on my Santa Anas because I didn't think we'd be skiing deep snow, and the Silverton snow was better. This snow ... I don't know how to explain it. Set up, soft, crusty, blower, creamy, chunky? All of the above? It was like a roulette wheel of nastiness and you had to keep your head and tips up, nice even pressure, no tail push. I was not successful. When I lost my skis the first time the instructor spent a good ten minutes making a grid with his ski to find them (he asked me to stay put). I was knee to thigh deep, and making a platform was tough because the snow underneath kept disintegrating. When I lost my skis the fourth time, I asked him to just leave me for the mountain lions to eat.  (Pro tip: if you're falling all over the place and you've been hiking and it's way after lunch time, consider whether it's just possible that you might desperately need to eat something.)

 

Anyway, I'm sure that type of snow won't be a problem much longer, not inbounds. It's the same reason some of the instructors have been avoiding Windows and Doors - let someone else take the hit.

 

Horseshoe, however, is skiing really well, as is Contest.

 

And just in case - please don't duck ropes! Two people got caught in an avalanche in Ballroom, off a closed gate on Peak 10, yesterday. My understanding is that they had to go through a closed gate to get there. Ski Patrol had to go out and help them, which put those rescuers in harm's way, not to mention means delays in getting other stuff open to those of us who actually respect the ropes.  http://avalanche.state.co.us/caic/obs/obs_report.php?obs_id=37404

post #215 of 235
Breakable crust is easier on a snowboard - it sucks particularly if you're using skis with flat tails IME. It's the world's most frustrating alpine experience finding a a nice untracked face then punching through on the first turn then knowing you've got the chore of holding your knee ligaments together for the rest of the run.
post #216 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by fatbob View Post

Breakable crust is easier on a snowboard - it sucks particularly if you're using skis with flat tails IME. It's the world's most frustrating alpine experience finding a a nice untracked face then punching through on the first turn then knowing you've got the chore of holding your knee ligaments together for the rest of the run.

hop and stomp 

post #217 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by fatbob View Post

Breakable crust is easier on a snowboard - it sucks particularly if you're using skis with flat tails IME. It's the world's most frustrating alpine experience finding a a nice untracked face then punching through on the first turn then knowing you've got the chore of holding your knee ligaments together for the rest of the run.

Aha! I'll blame my flat tails, then. Certainly not my lack of skills.

post #218 of 235
Thread Starter 
Anyone ever heard of Pine Ridge Cat Skiing in Leadville?
post #219 of 235
Thread Starter 
I called the number on their website and it led me to the Columbine Inn in Leadville. I think it's a scam.
post #220 of 235

If you called Columbine, what did they say?  It's possible they are long gone out of business.  Columbine is real and been there awhile.  The only place I have direct experience with is the snowmobile place, White Mountain.

post #221 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike78 View Post

If you called Columbine, what did they say?  It's possible they are long gone out of business.  Columbine is real and been there awhile.  The only place I have direct experience with is the snowmobile place, White Mountain.

The lady who answered said she had never heard of it. Perhaps they have gone out of business. Kind of disappointing... it was very affordable
post #222 of 235
Thread Starter 
Are there any other cat skiing operations that accommodate strong intermediates? There's a week long storm going on this week, but it's supposed to be dry the whole time I'm there and I'm craving some powder... 😀
post #223 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsessedtxskier View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike78 View Post

If you called Columbine, what did they say?  It's possible they are long gone out of business.  Columbine is real and been there awhile.  The only place I have direct experience with is the snowmobile place, White Mountain.

The lady who answered said she had never heard of it. Perhaps they have gone out of business. Kind of disappointing... it was very affordable

 

Possibly there is a causal relationship there ... 

post #224 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bounceswoosh View Post

Possibly there is a causal relationship there ... 

Truth to that 😂 But I did find Chicago Ridge and it has great reviews. Almost all reviews say that the terrain is suitable for intermediates, so if they all took the time to put that in the review it must be pretty impressionable. I'd rather go with an accredited operation than one I have to dig around for information about. Got scammed recently😳, so I'm extremely cautious right now with money and quality 😅
post #225 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsessedtxskier View Post

Anyone ever heard of Pine Ridge Cat Skiing in Leadville?

 

Ok, that is super weird. I put my internet stalker skills to work for a few minutes.

 

1. That website has been up since at least 2013 and by inference 2012, because at the time it has a December 2012 snow report.

2. The website liberally references Columbine Inn. I can't find a current sec state listing for the Columbine Inn, likely because the actual name of the business has been changed to something else. Former references to the motel reflect Jacek Kosla as the owner, and Lake County GIS records still show him as the owner.

3. The Pine Ridge website shows Bob Mackenzie as the email contact. A cursory google search indicates this is a real estate developer and general contractor in Leadville that has housing developments named with variations of Pine Ridge.

4. The cat shown in the picture is from Brundage Mountain Resort in Idaho, with that name erased off the side (but not the back) with MS Paint. My guess is whoever made the website stole the photo. The other photos on the site appear suspect.

5. The maps page on the site show "Pine Ridge" is the hill immediately behind the motel. Google earth indicates the "ridge" is no more than 200 vertical feet from the crest to US 24. That is a bunny hill level of vertical drop. A small bunny hill. I didn't believe it was 2000 feet in length either until I pulled out the measure tool, and it is. 200 vert over 2000 feet is SUPER FLAT for any ungroomed terrain. It would be better if he was lying about the length of runs.

 

My conclusion is that this operation exists or existed at one time, but is a terrible idea and a waste of money. The website has pretty specific information, and I can't imagine somebody making up such terrible terrain.

 

Leadville is in somewhat of a snow shadow given its elevation. Ski Cooper only gets 275" a year because the Saguache (Sawatch range)- the highest range in Colorado- is directly west and sucks out the snow. This place probably gets under 200" a year. Which is probably good, because the total lack of a reasonable pitch means you would get stuck if they actually had deep powder.

 

You would be better served saving a few bucks and hitting up Ski Cooper. You would be much better served hitting up Ski Cooper and Chicago Ridge, or Monarch's cat ski operation. Even if this thing is still operating, my god, it sucks.

post #226 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post

Ok, that is super weird. I put my internet stalker skills to work for a few minutes.

1. That website has been up since at least 2013 and by inference 2012, because at the time it has a December 2012 snow report.
2. The website liberally references Columbine Inn. I can't find a current sec state listing for the Columbine Inn, likely because the actual name of the business has been changed to something else. Former references to the motel reflect Jacek Kosla as the owner, and Lake County GIS records still show him as the owner.
3. The Pine Ridge website shows Bob Mackenzie as the email contact. A cursory google search indicates this is a real estate developer and general contractor in Leadville that has housing developments named with variations of Pine Ridge.
4. The cat shown in the picture is from Brundage Mountain Resort in Idaho, with that name erased off the side (but not the back) with MS Paint. My guess is whoever made the website stole the photo. The other photos on the site appear suspect.
5. The maps page on the site show "Pine Ridge" is the hill immediately behind the motel. Google earth indicates the "ridge" is no more than 200 vertical feet from the crest to US 24. That is a bunny hill level of vertical drop. A small bunny hill. I didn't believe it was 2000 feet in length either until I pulled out the measure tool, and it is. 200 vert over 2000 feet is SUPER FLAT for any ungroomed terrain. It would be better if he was lying about the length of runs.

My conclusion is that this operation exists or existed at one time, but is a terrible idea and a waste of money. The website has pretty specific information, and I can't imagine somebody making up such terrible terrain.

Leadville is in somewhat of a snow shadow given its elevation. Ski Cooper only gets 275" a year because the Saguache (Sawatch range)- the highest range in Colorado- is directly west and sucks out the snow. This place probably gets under 200" a year. Which is probably good, because the total lack of a reasonable pitch means you would get stuck if they actually had deep powder.

You would be better served saving a few bucks and hitting up Ski Cooper. You would be much better served hitting up Ski Cooper and Chicago Ridge, or Monarch's cat ski operation. Even if this thing is still operating, my god, it sucks.

I started to get that impression 😂😂😂😂
I think I'll probably do a day of cat skiing early next week with Chicago Ridge. It seems to be pretty low angle (good for my skill set) and they have a good amount of terrain, which hopefully means that I'll be skiing some powder. When my Dad asked what I wanted for Christmas and I told him ski lessons, he said he'd just give me some money and I can choose what to do with it (meaning he wouldn't give me enough money to cover all of it probably). But, he said that he would pay for a day of cat-skiing for me. Pretty freakin awesome Christmas present from a couple of pretty cool parents 😎. I really do appreciate them for letting me do this. Most 17 year olds I know haven't seen snow.
Anyways, I will probably pay for a lesson or two with my own money.
post #227 of 235

 

 

Chicago Ridge's terrain is very susceptible to wind.

 

You would probably be better off with Powder Addition on the front range.

http://www.powderaddiction.com/

 
post #228 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHREDHEAD View Post


It says on their website that they don't accommodate intermediates. What about Vail Powder Guides? Does anyone know anything about them?
post #229 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsessedtxskier View Post


It says on their website that they don't accommodate intermediates. What about Vail Powder Guides? Does anyone know anything about them?

 

I don't know much about the operation directly but have heard good things. They operate on Shrine Pass which certainly has intermediate terrain available. Probably worth a call over there to ask. 

 

Edit: Their website says they require strong intermediate or advanced skills, so sounds like you should be good.

post #230 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post

I don't know much about the operation directly but have heard good things. They operate on Shrine Pass which certainly has intermediate terrain available. Probably worth a call over there to ask. 

Edit: Their website says they require strong intermediate or advanced skills, so sounds like you should be good.

I just read the reviews on tripadvisor. Every one of 24 reviews was 5 stars. Every one of them said they skied fresh tracks all day, and about half of them said that the owner gave discounts because there was some sun crust at the top. One guy said he went there during the horrible dry month of January 2015 and skied fresh powder all day. Sounds good to me, just go to check with my Dad to see what he will pay for.
post #231 of 235
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsessedtxskier View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post

I don't know much about the operation directly but have heard good things. They operate on Shrine Pass which certainly has intermediate terrain available. Probably worth a call over there to ask. 

Edit: Their website says they require strong intermediate or advanced skills, so sounds like you should be good.

I just read the reviews on tripadvisor. Every one of 24 reviews was 5 stars. Every one of them said they skied fresh tracks all day, and about half of them said that the owner gave discounts because there was some sun crust at the top. One guy said he went there during the horrible dry month of January 2015 and skied fresh powder all day. Sounds good to me, just go to check with my Dad to see what he will pay for.

 

I did a hut trip near Shrine Pass in mid November. There was tons of snow already, and the views are beautiful. I think you'll enjoy it.

post #232 of 235
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHREDHEAD View Post


Chicago Ridge and Vail Powder Guides are both booked out that week. I may go with Powder Addiction. I'm a little worried about the terrain difficulty, although they told me the rule of thumb is to be able to ski a groomed black confidently. Hopefully a day in ski school will help me feel more confident.
post #233 of 235
Monarch?
post #234 of 235
Thread Starter 
I just decided to save cat-skiing for some future trip. I'll just take some rides on the $10 cat at Keystone. Merry Christmas!!
post #235 of 235
Thread Starter 
I've posted a trip report in the trip report forum if any of you are interested in reading it. I had a fantastic trip! Vail and Breckenridge are the best places I have ever skied!
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