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Chile forecast 2015 - Page 4  

post #91 of 118

Over the weekend the 3 Valleys transitioned from most-of-the-day-hardpack to serious freeze/thaw. I tried skiing off piste both days, hunting windpack lines on old tortured snow, with the result recorded here:

 

http://bit.ly/laparvatorturedsnow

 

with some timely Chilean music to accompany it (September is the "Mes de Fiestas Patrias", or "Month of National Celebrations"),

 

First half is ugly ugly as they would say here, low light compensated by dirty snow, but in the second half the sun came out and it is much nicer.... Sorry for the amateurishness! 

 

post #92 of 118

Now that's a sign!   Somebody just explained to me that my sign essentially means no diving.

But that "no jumping boobies" is an accurate Google translation.  They says it's Chilean slang.  

Meaning, don't dive vertically like a booby bird into the water.   You live in Chile -- is this true?

post #93 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cryptica View Post
 

Now that's a sign!   Somebody just explained to me that my sign essentially means no diving.

But that "no jumping boobies" is an accurate Google translation.  They says it's Chilean slang.  

Meaning, don't dive vertically like a booby bird into the water.   You live in Chile -- is this true?

"Tirar un piquero" is "to dive", or "throw a dive", nothing to do with boobies, sorry mate.

post #94 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Casey E View Post
 

Over the weekend the 3 Valleys transitioned from most-of-the-day-hardpack to serious freeze/thaw. I tried skiing off piste both days, hunting windpack lines on old tortured snow, with the result recorded here:

 

http://bit.ly/laparvatorturedsnow

 

with some timely Chilean music to accompany it (September is the "Mes de Fiestas Patrias", or "Month of National Celebrations"),

 

First half is ugly ugly as they would say here, low light compensated by dirty snow, but in the second half the sun came out and it is much nicer.... Sorry for the amateurishness! 

 


Thanks Casey.  How is the snow depth/quality?  i am headed down to Valle Nevada next week for race camp and races. Should I be expecting my training skis to get trashed or is there still plenty of depth.  From your video it looked more like dirt in the snow

post #95 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Casey E View Post
 

Over the weekend the 3 Valleys transitioned from most-of-the-day-hardpack to serious freeze/thaw. I tried skiing off piste both days, hunting windpack lines on old tortured snow, with the result recorded here:

 

http://bit.ly/laparvatorturedsnow

 

with some timely Chilean music to accompany it (September is the "Mes de Fiestas Patrias", or "Month of National Celebrations"),

 

First half is ugly ugly as they would say here, low light compensated by dirty snow, but in the second half the sun came out and it is much nicer.... Sorry for the amateurishness! 

 


Thanks Casey.  How is the snow depth/quality?  i am headed down to Valle Nevada next week for race camp and races. Should I be expecting my training skis to get trashed or is there still plenty of depth.  From your video it looked more like dirt in the snow


Do you need someone to go along to sherpa your gear?  I'm sure, between Phil and I, one of us could be talked into that :D

post #96 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post
 


Do you need someone to go along to sherpa your gear?  I'm sure, between Phil and I, one of us could be talked into that :D


Well, with a separated shoulder and 6 pairs of skis (race+ trainer for SG, GS and SL) + gear to try to lug down  with me, might not be a bad idea.......:beercheer:

post #97 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post
 


Thanks Casey.  How is the snow depth/quality?  i am headed down to Valle Nevada next week for race camp and races. Should I be expecting my training skis to get trashed or is there still plenty of depth.  From your video it looked more like dirt in the snow

Snow depth in the 3 Valleys varies according to exposure, from very little on lower flat slopes, to up to 1 meter on the upper southern exposures. Valle Nevado has a 70cm packed base on the runs according to their website, which is probably an accurate average. This is a hard, fairly evenly distributed base on the runs you will be racing on, and they will be grooming them very well, so the racing will probably be pretty damn good. The 3 Valleys have racers from all over the world right now, all enjoying the great weather and empty slopes during the week. They are out from dawn to when it softens up, sometime between 12 and 2 pm.

 

The dirt in my video is rather typical of La Parva and some of the upper runs in VN, where the high ridgelines get the snow burned off the north faces by the sun and the north wind rips the dirt and pebbles up and over the ridge onto the south side. If there is enough snow, grooming fixes this for the most part. Looks like snow for Sunday, tapering off monday, so you might get bouncy packed powder for a couple of days, then good hard packed powder for another few days. After that, anybodies guess!

post #98 of 118

thanks!

post #99 of 118
Thread Starter 

First and foremost, thanks to everyone on this thread that gave both good advise and calmed my neurosis as I desperately waited for snow to fall in Portillo this summer. I just left, and all I can say is that Portillo must be the most special ski destination on the planet. While it had not snowed in a few weeks, we had bright sunshine, frozen nights, and good spring skiing every day we were there. The snow that they received from two storms was more than enough to provide a base that allowed the mountain to essentially be 100% open. We followed the sun as advised and were not dissapointed! Cruisers down past the trucks in the early morning, then laps off of roca jack until lunch at tio bobs, followed by a few laps on the lake run (for my money, the highlight of my ski life to date), and finishing with laps and laps on gargantua until the lifts closed at 5. Then tea, pool, gourmet dinner, lots of delicious wine, and live music.

 

The combination of steeps and scenery cannot be fathomed by those that have not been. The euphoria of every guest is palpable and makes it all the more special. Spending time on and around the inca lake is simply a life changing experience.  Anyone that has not been make a point of getting there. It will blow your mind.

 

Now I just need to figure out how to make more money so that I can go again!

post #100 of 118

The contrast in spring snow conditions between Portillo as reported by Skiandgolfnut and 3 Valleys as reported by CaseyE is similar to what I observed in September 2007, when similarly it had not snowed since August 20.  3 Valleys gets about 3/4 the snowfall of Portillo and seems to have more wind-stripping.  When the base is not particularly deep, barely 1 meter, this difference gets exaggerated, as the thinner 3 Valleys base starts losing cover sooner.

 

Las Lenas is in the same climate zone. Snowfall is at least as much as Portillo, but there's a lot of wind and exposed ridgelines here have been losing snow. Of course terrain is massive here so there's still plenty to ski.  The weak spot at LL is that the base is much lower than Portillo or 3 Valleys, so the easy and intermediate terrain on the lower third of the mountain gets really sloppy by noon or so on these warm days. 

 

How warm?  About 9C most days this week, but I saw 11C one day and 13C another.  The clear days at Portillo in 2007 seemed similarly warm.  Is that normal for early September?

post #101 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
 

The contrast in spring snow conditions between Portillo as reported by Skiandgolfnut and 3 Valleys as reported by CaseyE is similar to what I observed in September 2007, when similarly it had not snowed since August 20.  3 Valleys gets about 3/4 the snowfall of Portillo and seems to have more wind-stripping.  When the base is not particularly deep, barely 1 meter, this difference gets exaggerated, as the thinner 3 Valleys base starts losing cover sooner.

 

Las Lenas is in the same climate zone. Snowfall is at least as much as Portillo, but there's a lot of wind and exposed ridgelines here have been losing snow. Of course terrain is massive here so there's still plenty to ski.  The weak spot at LL is that the base is much lower than Portillo or 3 Valleys, so the easy and intermediate terrain on the lower third of the mountain gets really sloppy by noon or so on these warm days. 

 

How warm?  About 9C most days this week, but I saw 11C one day and 13C another.  The clear days at Portillo in 2007 seemed similarly warm.  Is that normal for early September?

Heat, meaning days with +25°C or more in Santiago, can happen anytime during the winter, but are more frequent in September. As the temp drops about 1.5°C for every 100 meters of altitude above Santiago (600m), this means the ski area bases (about 2,600m) would be about 15°C less, or maxing out at +10-15°C. Given that the central zone ski areas are at about the same low latitude as Los Angeles Ca (33°), this is to be expected when a high pressure system gets stuck here. That said, 5-7 days of heat in a row, as we are experiencing now, are NOT common at this time of the year.

 

Often, a really hot day sucks the maritime air and clouds into the central valley overnight (from a weak coastal low pressure system), and the daytime temp drops 10-15 degrees, which is known as the "Vaguada Costera". This hasn't happened this time... BUT WHEN IT DOES, it can sometimes bring light rain to Santiago, and as the day advances, the clouds crawl up the west face of the Andes, fog things up, and start to deposit light small snowflakes sometime in the afternoon. Depending on how long this lasts, there can be 1-20cm of mostly windless fluff by dawn the next day, when the clouds can suddenly drop back into the valley, the sun comes out, and the world seems to be born again! This is the "best case scenario" for a snowfall that allows you to ski champagne powder on any slope regardless of pitch. Will the precipitation expected for Sunday to Tuesday be like this???? I once saw it happen 4 days in a row in September, which meant getting 5,000m of untracked powder by the time the clouds and the crowds hit again. It also means that people in Santiago think it is cloudy in the ski areas, when it ain't! 

 

This was the view from my balcony in La Parva on one such day in 2013:

 

post #102 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
 

The contrast in spring snow conditions between Portillo as reported by Skiandgolfnut and 3 Valleys as reported by CaseyE is similar to what I observed in September 2007, when similarly it had not snowed since August 20.  3 Valleys gets about 3/4 the snowfall of Portillo and seems to have more wind-stripping.  When the base is not particularly deep, barely 1 meter, this difference gets exaggerated, as the thinner 3 Valleys base starts losing cover sooner.

 

Las Lenas is in the same climate zone. Snowfall is at least as much as Portillo, but there's a lot of wind and exposed ridgelines here have been losing snow. Of course terrain is massive here so there's still plenty to ski.  The weak spot at LL is that the base is much lower than Portillo or 3 Valleys, so the easy and intermediate terrain on the lower third of the mountain gets really sloppy by noon or so on these warm days. 

 

How warm?  About 9C most days this week, but I saw 11C one day and 13C another.  The clear days at Portillo in 2007 seemed similarly warm.  Is that normal for early September?

AAFrom my experience in skiing in Chile durin

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
 

The contrast in spring snow conditions between Portillo as reported by Skiandgolfnut and 3 Valleys as reported by CaseyE is similar to what I observed in September 2007, when similarly it had not snowed since August 20.  3 Valleys gets about 3/4 the snowfall of Portillo and seems to have more wind-stripping.  When the base is not particularly deep, barely 1 meter, this difference gets exaggerated, as the thinner 3 Valleys base starts losing cover sooner.

 

Las Lenas is in the same climate zone. Snowfall is at least as much as Portillo, but there's a lot of wind and exposed ridgelines here have been losing snow. Of course terrain is massive here so there's still plenty to ski.  The weak spot at LL is that the base is much lower than Portillo or 3 Valleys, so the easy and intermediate terrain on the lower third of the mountain gets really sloppy by noon or so on these warm days. 

 

How warm?  About 9C most days this week, but I saw 11C one day and 13C another.  The clear days at Portillo in 2007 seemed similarly warm.  Is that normal for early September?

 

Portillo doesn't always get more snow, but I do agree that it holds snow better. I think it is a combination of the high, steep mountains that permit the pooling and protection of wind-driven snow as well as shading the late season sun. Skiing Portillo is about sun management, regardless the time of year. On warm days, it is common for the Juncalillo side to close due to wet slide danger before 1100am. Of course, even in late season, sun doesn't get fully to Plateau until afternoon.

As far a temps go, I have always considered Chile warm skiing, much like Tahoe. Once early August hits and the sun gets higher, it feels warm when the sun's out, even if it is not all that warm. I have generally found high temps ranging from the high 30's to 50's during the day. If the sun's out, that means a light layer for the afternoon. The only time it is below freezing in Chile is at night or when it's snowing. Occasionally, they do get a cool and windy spell, like during my visit a few weeks ago. Then, gray skies can prevail and highs only around freezing. Of course, I had only packed the usual "Portillo gear" so I was a bit chilly this year in Chile;) In my 15-years of traveling there, I have never taken an insulated jacket nor wore more than say a simple mid-layer under a shell. 

I have had the opportunity to ski many of the mountains in Chile over the past years. Although, I haven't skied anywhere but Portillo for the past 10-years. I just prefer the simplicity and experience of it there. I have been to Portillo during low and big snow years alike. I used to watch the snow report like a hawk before my trip. Now, I just go skiing and have an amazing time, no matter the snow. Generally, I prefer sunny Portillo weeks to snowy ones.

post #103 of 118

The other point in Portillo's favor is lower skier density from having just the one hotel there with ~450 people.  The Juncalillo groomer had perfect corn at noon on my warm September days in 2007.  Spring snow groomers at Las Lenas or 3 Valleys would have long since have been chewed to bits by skier traffic.

post #104 of 118

20cms today and another 45 forecast over the next few days, spring is going pretty nicely!

post #105 of 118

La Parva got 25cm of fluffy too, perked things up nicely!

 

post #106 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Casey E View Post
 

La Parva got 25cm of fluffy too, perked things up nicely!

 


Yeehaw!  Leaving Wednesday, a day in Santiago Thursday and then hit the snow in Valle Nevado on Friday!   Will also be racing in La Parva the following Saturday Sunday (19/20 Sept) if you are around

post #107 of 118

Dumping again in Portillo, another 20cms overnight, most stuff currently shut down due to avvy risk. 

post #108 of 118
Chasing shadows in LP yesterday:

https://youtu.be/zPm2_e_5yG8
post #109 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post


Yeehaw!  Leaving Wednesday, a day in Santiago Thursday and then hit the snow in Valle Nevado on Friday!   Will also be racing in La Parva the following Saturday Sunday (19/20 Sept) if you are around
Yup should be there, albeit a bit hungover from the Fiestas Patrias festivities....
post #110 of 118

Casey --

 

Reading about the earthquake in Santiago.  Can you describe what it was like.  Heard from a friend in Portillo.  She says they felt it there and it was the longest and strongest one she's ever experienced in many years of earthquakes.  But she says everyone's OK and hotel is intact.  

post #111 of 118
8.4 richter and 2 minutes, near Illapel, about 250km north of Stgo. Multiple significant aftershocks, but the worst should be over now. Panam highway blocked at 150km north. Tsunami alert for entire Chilean coast, probably worth getting up/away if you are on the coast. 2 dead so far, not much real physical damage as yet. Shook like hell in LP, Margaritas absorbed the shock.

Aside from some inconvenience in transport and elec north of Stgo, this should not not affect the general public in Stgo or points south. There may be some rockfall on roads, Not to worry, this happens every few years in Chile, albeit more frequently in recent years.
post #112 of 118

This is crazy.  I have friends in Portillo who've been reporting that they're fine. 

Another friend is in Hawaii waiting for the Tsunami 

post #113 of 118

Earthquake donations to help the victims of the Illapel quake and 300+ aftershocks can be made to http://www.desafiolevantemoschile.cl/como-aportar/con-dinero/, via different options including paypal. This is a private, reputable organization that has worked wonders in previous disasters in Chile.

 

Thanks in advance!

post #114 of 118

On a more positive note, here is video of what La Parva was like a week ago:

 

https://youtu.be/fMbfzfoa6u8

 

post #115 of 118
Well, survived the earthquakes and a DNF in the first GS and a less than satisfactory SG run to snag a 3rd place and podium in the la parva FIS Masters GS yesterday. ! Stoked as it is a real tough international class and I didn't realistically think I could medal smile.gif (and yes, I am the little guy with the Blizzards)


post #116 of 118

Congrats!  Got video?

post #117 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

Congrats!  Got video?

Need to get hold of it from the coaches
post #118 of 118

Moderator note:  thread being locked.  The new thread for 2016:

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/146878/ski-chile-2016

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