This past weekend was exceptionally fun for me. On Saturday, I skied in the warmest temps I have ever experienced on the slopes. On Sunday, I did something I have wanted to do for a long time - ski and golf on the same day. It was a great weekend to cap off the ski season and begin the golf season.
Saturday was my first time ever being able to begin skiing at 8:00 AM in my shorts. Temps started in the mid 60s and quickly advanced to the 80s under a cloudless sky. It was a perfect day to roll out the convertible.
Porsche Boxster parked next to me - the ultimate spring skiing vehicle. I need one of these hassle-free ski racks.
Around Noon, the thermometer at the base of the K1 Gondola read 82F in the shade. It felt much warmer than that in the sun. It was a relief when the wind blew across the snow to cool me down.
Everything got bumped up very quickly and by 2:00 PM, there were slushy puddles in between the moguls on some of the runs. It felt good to blast though the bumps even though my feet were swimming in water in the bottom of my boots.
Paul Jones joined me in the late morning and soon thereafter we met and skied with his friend, Dave - a ski instructor at Jiminy Peak. We skied a number of runs off the Canyon Quad - Cascade, Escapade, Downdraft, Big and Double Dipper and Ovation.
Killington deserves a big thanks for opening so many runs, even if they were not entirely skiable. What were all of these grass skiers using for wax? My skis, which were freshly hot waxed with all-temp wax, were like sandpaper on the grass.
The bumps on Big Dipper were especially good in the trees and on the edge of the liftline. It seemed like many of the best bump skiers in the northeast were on the slopes on Saturday. I do not remember seeing so many excellent skiers on the mountain at one time.
It was great to see Paul Jones ripping the gushy bumps. Here he is on Cascade. (Sorry for the crappy video; this camera has seen its last days.)
In the late afternoon, we moved over to the Superstar lift and skied Superstar, Skye Hawk, Skye Lark and Ovation. Ovation was the run of the day for me at 3:00 PM. The bumps were the perfect size and softness.
Lower Skye Lark
Me on Skye Hawk
After my last run on Superstar at 4:00 PM, I had a few beers with a guy from Rutland that was parked next to me under the Superstar lift. The access road had turned into a giant tailgating party and more and more people were arriving as the evening wore on. He convinced me to buy an 09/10 midweek season pass, which I did on Sunday morning for $349. I wish I had bought it earlier because it became valid for the remainder of the 08/09 season, including weekends, on April 11.
My friend Mark and I arrived at Killington at 8:00 AM on Sunday. We heard "what a difference a day makes" many times on Sunday morning as most of the mountain disappeared in a blanket of fog. Temps had dropped into the mid 50s and the snow was hard and crusty. Anything ungroomed, such as the bumps I skied on Saturday, was concrete.
Mark riding through the fog.
East Fall had the best feeling snow in the morning but don't ask me what it looked like.
The amount of snow loss from Saturday was sad but impressive.
Mark navigating what was left of the runout to the gondola.
After a few runs on East Fall, Superstar and Skye Lark, we decided to have an earlier and extended BBQ/beer break to allow time for conditions to improve.
The bison burgers were especially tasty today.
Around 1:00 PM, the fog lifted and the sun started to peek through the clouds. We headed back over to the Canyon lift where I ran into Dave from yesterday along with his buddies Paul - a ski instructor at Mt. Snow - and Bill. We skied Power Line, East Fall, Downdraft and Cascade. By this time, the snow had softened considerably and the bumps were fun once again.
At 2:45 PM, with a little bit of sadness and some excitement, I said goodbye to my new friends and the soft snow and headed off with Mark to the Proctor Pittsford Country Club to begin my golf season. I was intrigued by the idea of skiing and golfing the same day after driving back to Park City from Alta one sunny afternoon a few years ago and seeing the golfers play in the valley. I never had the opportunity to do it until Sunday.
Mark's friend Bill lives across the street from Proctor Pittsford (about a 20 minute drive from K) and took us to the driving range and then played nine holes with us. Somehow, skiing the bumps put me in the zone for golf, as I had my best first-day-of-the season nine I have had in recent memory. It felt great to par the first hole and even better to birdie the seventh hole. I finished the front nine with a 44, which is great for me, especially considering I had not swung a club in more than 6 months.
Me on the tee
Mark on the tee
Proctor Pittsford has beautiful mountain views.
Thanks Mark for suggesting we do this. I can't wait to do it again. And thanks to Killington for a great season.