Originally Posted by billyymc
We only got about 5 or so inches of sugary powder before sleet/freeze rain started. First hour of skiing was good, but high winds made windblown packed pow conditions. Then sleet and freeze rain made visibilty nill...ice on goggles, helmets, poles, skis, jackets, pants, everything. By the time we left, any untracked had 1/8" of ice on top to bust through. Raining heavily on the way home
I went to Hunter. I left my house in NJ at 5:45, and what is usually a 2 hour drive became 2:45, thanks Nokian, passing 3 jackknifed semis and several cars off the road. I was on the hill a little after 9:00 and jumped on the quad. As I was riding up, I heard on my patrol radio that they were closing the quad due to wind. With no way back to the top, I stayed there waiting for the West side to open. I also gathered up about 8 friends as they got off the lift and I stopped them from going down the front.
At 9:20, still haven't had a run down the main mountain, but we had about 5 inches on the ground and still coming. We ripped a fresh run down Wayout, up Z lift, got first tracks on Annapurna, got almost fresh tracks on Claires, then several more on Annapurna. The mountain had D and B-lifts running, neither of which went to the top, and planned to run a shuttle to the west side but the road hadn't been plowed yet. My freinds and I, along with maybe
a dozen others, tore up the west side until the first shuttle arrived about 11am. I stayed until about noon, grabbed lunch up top, and it came over the radio that Z lift was also closing for wind. Patrol asked me to help close the west side as I was off-duty, so I got 1 more run on it., where the shuttle took us back to the front. Took a run on D-lift, when the mountain got a snowsprite to take me and several other patrollers up to the top of the mountain. About 2pm, it turned to r@#n. I took out the AT gear I have stashed at the summit, skied down Jimmy Huega and skinned back up. I would have done it again, but the rain put a breakable frozen layer over the soft snow. I hung out up top to do sweep in the mixed precip at the end of the day. I'm typing this in my ski house across the parking lot from Hunter and it's lightly snowing. Overall, we got about 8 inches topped off with rain, and on my last run at 4:30, the top was breakable crust down to the top of the lower lifts, then the tracked up snow skied really sweet on the trial I swept, Gun Hill. I hope it dries out before it freezes, and the new snow fills it in. We'll see what tomorrow rings.