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Paedde’s US Snow Safari 2006 – Trip Report and Pics - Page 2

post #31 of 101
Originally Posted by paedde
Day 28 Powder day at Montana Snowbowl

With 4” over night the Snowbowl got the most snow in the area. Together with the snow from the last 48h and the wind over night it should be a great powder day.

Today I got first chair thanks to “Volantaddict” from the “Barking Bear Forum”. He is one if this guys waiting in line for an hour before opening. When I arrived at the chair it was about 9:10 and only a dozen or two other guys where already waiting. By 9:30 a few more but still not bad at all.

The mountain was covered in light and untouched powder. The wind really did a great job. Boot and knee keep powder almost everywhere. Today the mountain got tracked a bit faster then yesterday. By late afternoon it was still possible to find untouched powder but not all the way down.

Another great day and for sure a mountain to ski again asap.

I should mention the après ski. There’s a bar at the base where all the locals meet right after skiing. Lot’s of beer and great conversation. A place where you can easily meet the always friendly locals.

No new snow in the forecast and my legs are killing me if I ski another day without a break.
It was nice to meet paedde and ski the pow with him. He is a solid skier with a real radar for finding the powder in the trees. It was one of the best days of the year at The Bowl, he hit it just right for great snow, though we actually had some lift lines; we had to wait for up to five chairs before loading a couple times.

Sorry to have missed you at the bar paedde, you must have left before I finished the last run (the lift stopped before I made it down the hill), otherwise I expect I would have seen you, as I was there 'til the cows came home.
post #32 of 101
Thread Starter 
I was really crowded in there. I talked to Scott and some of his friends at the bar till about 6pm. didn’t see you.

I’ll be back for sure. If not this year most probably next year.

Thanks for showing me around. Really like the “windows”
post #33 of 101
Originally Posted by paedde
I was really crowded in there. I talked to Scott and some of his friends at the bar till about 6pm. didn’t see you.

I’ll be back for sure. If not this year most probably next year.

Thanks for showing me around. Really like the “windows”
Yeah, I was sitting outside until the crowd inside died down a bit around five, I figured I would have seen you leaving. Oh well, maybe next time.
post #34 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 30 No skiing – Sightseeing Seattle

My legs defiantly need a day off. Only Mt. Baker reported 12”. I’m spoiled by the look of it. How can I possible take a day off with 12” of powder? Almost for sure it’s not the very light powder as temperatures hovering around freezing with a light inversion as well.

Day 31 No skiing – Rain and mixed precipitation for all resort

I checked the snow reports this morning but as forecasted nothing to be excited about. All resorts have light rain at least at the base some even all the way to the top. Temperatures will change over night and lots of snow in the forecast for the rest of the week.

There’s no way that I’m going to ski while it’s raining. I’ve done that once in Whistler.

I should actually drive all the way to Lake Tahoe. They expect 5 to 8 feed of snow over the next few days. But 13 or more hours of driving plus rain and snow all the way will make it more like two days of terrible and possible dangerous driving. I’ll stay in Seattle and check the forecast again tomorrow morning. It should be good up here as well. If not tomorrow latest on Wednesday.
post #35 of 101
can't understand, you go to salt lake and ski solititude and snowbasin for 2 days each, but no Alta or Snowbird??
post #36 of 101
Thread Starter 
Did these resorts last year and this year it’s all about following the storms. Powder days….
post #37 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 32 Travel from Seattle to Sacramento
I checked the snow report at 6am and once again no new snow and still mild temperatures.

Forecast was still very promising for Lake Tahoe and this made it a bit easier to put all my stuff in the car and start driving.

770 miles (1230km) and 13h (12h driving) later I arrived in Sacramento. Due to icy roads I didn’t go for US-89 especially not after driving for more then 10h. It was raining for the first 3h and after this just occasionally a few minutes.

Day 33 Travel from Sacramento to Mt. Rose and Skiing

Another 2h driving.

Mt. Rose got about 30” within the last 3 days. I expected great skiing especially in the chutes which have been closed since the beginning of the storm.

Now I need to split the report into Morning and Afternoon

Morning: Ordinary skiing on excellent groomed runs and variable off piste skiing. Mainly tracked powder of a “Sierra” kind of quality. Just nothing to be excided about. The chutes remained closed and at first I couldn’t understand why. After testing the off piste conditions all over the mountain I know why. They got a lot a mixed precipitation and for sure rain for quite some time. Together with the heavy wind this created big wind drifts with are anything between soft or rock hard. Unpredictable and dangerous. In addition they shoot some avalanches and the debris has to be terrible as well. Even the tree skiing was a challenge because even the thin branches of a tree are frozen to rock hard sticks.

Afternoon: Being very bored and with all the great runs being closed I had to find a way of keeping me busy. At home a “Closed” run means “not recommended” or “at your own risk” or “go there if you like to kill yourself”. How ever I decided to cross the rope towards the radio towers and give it a try. That was definitely the right thing to do. No idea why it was closed but I found untracked boot deep powder on the upper part. Good enough to do it again and again. Just once a ski patrol tried to get me but I could hide behind some trees. I wasn’t the only one but for sure not more then two dozen’s all afternoon
post #38 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 34 Great start and it became even better. Powder skiing Sierra at Tahoe

At 6am all resorts had a few inches of new snow but nothing to make any decision easier. Forecast looked good but with heavy wind on the mountain top (up to 100miles/h) I had to make sure to go to a resort which usually is not or not too much affected by the wind.

Homewood or Sierra (are there any others?)

By the time they opened the resort about 10” and it didn’t stop snowing all day long. Not the light Montana or Utah powder but still much better then the so called Sierra Cement. It was a blast. Nobody on the mountain. Even after 2h I could ski along the chair line and had untracked powder. Almost too good to be true. From lunch time till the end of the day I skied the trees mainly skiers right of the “Grandview Express” The left side gets tracked a bit faster but on the right side I could find boot to knee deep powder. Great light stuff with occasional face shots.
It was the first day for me at this resort. Looks like a great family resort with some stuff to keep advanced and experts busy for a day. No double blacks but who cares on a powder day. A few flat spots but not too bad at all. Now to the long lines. I just can’t stand the max. 1 min. lines…. Once I had to wait for 2.5 minutes but this was related to a nervous break down of the chair for about 2 minutes. According to some locals it usually is a nightmare on weekends.

I tried to get some action shots but no matter how hard I tried I could not find any other guys in the trees at the same time or find anyone on the chair to ski with. Mainly intermediate skiers on the mountain.
post #39 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 35 Epic Powder skiing at Sierra at Tahoe

Day pass U$ 59
Gas U$ 5
Heliskiing for the price of a day pass ---- priceless

Official report 12” but don’t ask me where they found this little amount of snow. The least I could find was about 2 feed and more like 3 feed for almost all areas.

Insane, awesome, breathtaking, unbelievable, freaking unbelievable, skiing like in heaven.

What else can I say to knee and waist deep powder all day long? I didn’t stop snowing till 4pm and many tracks got covered again during the day. I stopped counting the faceshots after about 1 minute. That was right at the point when the first one stopped. Bottomless very light powder every single run. Just to mention it again: It was very light powder and not at all Sierra Cement. People where talking about Utah and Montana kind of stuff and I have to agree.

Once again the powder competition was very little. A few more skiers on the mountain then yesterday but not before lunch time. They closed the road for some time after a small slide and some guys who could not make it to Kirkwood (both directions closed for some time) changed there plans.

I met David from San Francisco and got some action pics. Not many but a least some prove for the epic powder day.

Today’s rating: Best so far! Just before the epic day at Bridger Bowl.





post #40 of 101

Tahoe Stoke


Nice to hear when someone visits and hits it right. the past two days have been awsome all around the Lake. I think you hit it perfect yesterday, the winds were brutal. Mt rose yesterday produced exelent powder sking and the Chutes opened @ 11AM (Best Chutes pow in awhile) But then the winds came 60MPH gusting to 90. But the mountain stayed open.

Where are you sking Sunday, Monday?
Another bigger? storm is hitting Tomorrow night
post #41 of 101
Thread Starter 
Today a day off. Too busy and no now snow. I’m spoiled and addicted to powder.

Monday looks like another powder day but with very strong wind. Most likely back to Sierra because they are not affected by heavy wind. Homewood could be an option.

I usually check the forecast around 6am and decide where to go. What about you?
post #42 of 101
Originally Posted by paedde
Today a day off. Too busy and no now snow. I’m spoiled and addicted to powder.

Monday looks like another powder day but with very strong wind. Most likely back to Sierra because they are not affected by heavy wind. Homewood could be an option.

I usually check the forecast around 6am and decide where to go. What about you?
I do the same, but I have a pass for Mt. Rose so checking is just to see if I leave early to grab first chair, or just go later. I am getting a Home wood jones, thinking of going there in the next few days, I n fact I am thinking about heading up today, I have a pocket full of Two for the price of 1 Coupons so if I find a buddy we would ski for 24$ weekend or 13.50 week day.
I don't work so I pretty flexable. I am not likly to drive to the South Side (Too far away)
post #43 of 101
Thread Starter 
Mt. Rose could be an option this week. I could send you a PM early morning if you check your emails before you go skiing.
post #44 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 36 Epic Powder at Kirkwood

24h 24”
Storm total 80”

Although Kirkwood is not the most recommended resort on a weekend-powder-day I had to go there after reading the snow report.

They got the most snow since lifts closed yesterday any many areas have been closed for some time.

With good road conditions it will take you 45min from Heavenly but today it was more like 90min. Icy roads, chains required (except for 4x4) and hundreds of cars going the same way. I prepared myself for a day of endless lines and little skiing but it came completely different.

The lines seemed to be kinda long but still not as bad as I expect. < 5min taking the singles line otherwise a few more minutes. Only once I had to wait about 10min. That’s not bad at all considering a great powder day on a weekend. I had to wait longer at Jackson and many other resorts even on a weekday.

Now a few words regarding today’s quality of skiing. EEEEEEEPPPPPPPIIIIIIICCCC, dddddeeeeeeeeeeeppppp, freaking unbelievable, at least knee deep but more like waist deep. They opened the mountain step by step and some areas did not open since the beginning of the storm. I got stuck a few times due to snow almost up to my chest.

And now the best part of todays report. Second time on the chair I met a ski patrol. As usual he asked me how I like the conditions and bla bla bla…. The standard (US – not European) conversion till I told him that I’m from Switzerland and that I wouldn’t mind to get a few hints where to go especially in the afternoon. He gave me more then that. (Too good that this f*%&ing slow chair takes 11min) He actually told me where to be at what time and which way down I should take. How great is that: To be at the right spot right on time for the opening. It was insane. How funny to stay on top of Eagle Bowl together with about 150 other guys waiting for the “go” from the ski patrol. I have never seen a run getting tracked within 2 minutes. It was so much fun to be right in the middle of all the yelling - you could almost feel the joy and happiness of the guys around you.

Dear Ski Patrol, just in case you read that I would like to say Thank you!! for making this day even better. Should you ever ski in Switzerland I’ll make sure to show you around and show you the local secrets!

More snow on the way Sunday evening all the way through Friday. I think I’ll stay in the area and skip Mammoth. Forecast for South Lake Tahoe up to 200 cm till Friday.

Pics to keep you guys happy:






post #45 of 101
You are THE powderhound! :
post #46 of 101
Thread Starter 
No skiing and no new pics today but a short movie. Kirkwood yesterday late afternoon. It was much deeper then that in most areas but his area was affected by the wind.

Have fun
post #47 of 101
paedde, this is awesome! Well done!
post #48 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 37 Day off and waiting for the next storm

Getting ready for the next powder days. Sleep, relax, shopping, Starbucks coffee, washing and so on.

I had to get new goggles. The old once are a piece of crap and used a lot. Did I mention that I used my sun glasses only an hour so far…. I just hope I will never have to use them at least till 22nd of March and back home I wouldn’t mind to get some more powder.
post #49 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 38 More powder at Sierra at Tahoe

6” reported but it was once again more. Boot deep all day and occasionally even knee deep.

I arrive at the chair at 8:57 and still got onto the 5th chair. How nice and it didn’t change a lot all day. Usually right to the chair and twice about a 1 minute line. Just like last week a lot of intermediate and advanced skiers but almost no powder hounds.

I did expect heavy snow all day but it didn’t start till 2pm. Still it was a great powder day. On a day like this I highly recommend to ski west bowl for an hour or two first in the morning. Grooming to perfection with about 10-12” of new snow on top. After all of this stuff is tracked there is still plenty of time to hit the trees and the more challenging stuff.

Sierra was about the only option I had. US-89 north was closed due to avalanche control, Kirkwood is too much affected by heavy wind and Heavenly got only an inch. I didn’t mind to ski Sierra again and now I’m even running on a season pass. Got it for U$ 139 – the deal of the year.

I need a personal photographer otherwise I will never get any new actions shots.


West Bowl 10am

1pm one minute hiking and got this untracked

2pm in the back the tracked run.
post #50 of 101

The POW Blood Hound

Sounds like another exelent day for ya. And sound like a good move on the late pass deal!! So 2 more days af sking and its paid for?

Again good insticts, lets hope Mondays snow produces the steep and deep we have been promissed.
post #51 of 101
Thread Starter 
Yep 2 more days and with the heavy snow and wind in the forecast that should be the case.

Do you ski all week?
post #52 of 101
Originally Posted by paedde
Yep 2 more days and with the heavy snow and wind in the forecast that should be the case.

Do you ski all week?
Yea pretty much every day now, unless I am tired or have stuff I need to get done.

Tommorow I need to do something @ 10:30 AM but if the snow is as good as I think it will be, I will show up for the 8:30 ski an hour leave then come back. I think Tuesday is gonna be a real good day. (Knock on Wood)
post #53 of 101
Originally Posted by MTT
Yea pretty much every day now, unless I am tired or have stuff I need to get done.

Tommorow I need to do something @ 10:30 AM but if the snow is as good as I think it will be, I will show up for the 8:30 ski an hour leave then come back. I think Tuesday is gonna be a real good day. (Knock on Wood)
Wow, you put off skiing to get things done? I don't have that sort of self discipline. I go skiing and let the rest of my life slowly fall to ruins during ski season.
post #54 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 39 Epic powder day at Sierra at Tahoe

14” reported and as always this was only half the true.

I got to the chair at 8:45 and was #9. At 8:57 they opened and only 41 guys waiting. No lines all day or lets say a minute or two at times due to some inefficient guys scanning the tickets. How 2 or 3 guys can be so slow is a mystery to me. Some locals got upset and complained about it in a rather loud way. It was better after this. Welcome to the US – it’s all about customer service.

To the conditions: Heliskiing! Deep powder on the groomed runs and knee deep powder in the trees. Not as light as last Friday but still much better then the standard Sierra stuff. Most of the locals couldn’t stop calling it Utah or Montana powder. I had to disagree and explain the difference between occasional face shots and the need of a snorkel.

The weather: light snow, heavy snow, fog, sunshine, light snow, heavy snow, fog, wind, dumping and sunshine again. It changed within minutes or even from the base to the top.

Personal photographer had another day off but anyway a few pics.




post #55 of 101

Again Well done

OHH I see how it is, You update the Epic thread before the TGR thread

Hey no one is gonna belive you are getting all these core POW days within one month, you are raising the bar way too high. We will have to hook up soon so you can Photo slut for the camera.
post #56 of 101
Thread Starter 
It’s the trip of a lifetime
post #57 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 40 Epic powder – Backcountry Alpine Meadows

Epic but earn your turns!

No resort reported any snow over night but Squaw, Alpine and Kirkwood got up to 24” in 24h. After reading my last years report a decided to ski Alpine and explore the areas which had icy conditions last year. First right up to the top of Summit Six. I could see that most areas are tracked and it didn’t look good to get another powder day. In this case rule # 11 is important. “Watch the locals”. They all started hiking right away and so did I.

The result is better then I could ever imagine. Untouched powder from top all the way down to the chair. Light boot to knee deep powder and even faceshots at times. Thanks to the very few people on the mountain it remained almost untracked all day. The hiking is not bad at all for what you get. There is so much more to track that it will last for at least one more day but more likely two.

Pics will tell the rest of today’s powder skiing:










post #58 of 101
Thread Starter 
Day 41 Powder day Alpine Meadows Day 2

But not from the very beginning.

All other Tahoe resorts reported 1-4” only Alpine had 7-10”. Strange but after my experience with the “BridgerBowl Cloud” I had to believe it.

When I arrived at the resort it didn’t look promising at all. Almost no new snow in the parking lot, poor visibility, heavy wind and heavy snow.

First ride on the summit six didn’t look any better. I just don’t know where these guys found the 7-10”. Very heavy wind on top and white out conditions at times. Variable conditions on and off piste. Deep to nothing within one turn. I checked Scott Peak next and not much better. From there to High Yellow Peak and down Sherwood Face. Better especially in the trees where I could find boot deep powder but still nothing to be very happy about. Next run right from the top to Sherwood towards the base of Lakeview chair. Already very good deep powder but the long traverse back was not worth it.

I almost called it a day at 11am when I decided to have a lunch break and try again. It was dumping and this could improve the situation. That was the best I could do because now the best part of the day starts. The weather improved a little bit sometimes we even go sunshine for a few minutes. From the top of summit six I went towards the very right side of the resort. What a blast. Boot and sometimes almost knee deep powder from top to bottom. No powder completion at all. Parking lot almost empty. With 5min hiking and some traversing I got absolutely untouched powder every single time. Deep and light. I meet Mathieu a local guy and he had just as much fun as I had.

Some pics as always the last one will show you how much fun it was (Thanks Mathieu!)





post #59 of 101
Paedde, I hope you are sticking around the neighborhood for a while. Powder snow seems to follow you in epic quantities.
post #60 of 101
Originally Posted by Cirquerider
Paedde, I hope you are sticking around the neighborhood for a while. Powder snow seems to follow you in epic quantities.
Perhaps you should come to the East Coast for awhile! Jay could really use another pow day..or two, three, four...!

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