I got in the office for a little bit of work to get caught up from the dizzying holiday week but I kept my afternoon free for some much needed inspiration on the mountain. As luck would have it I didn't have any clients to show around and I ran into Taylor, the GM, who seemed to be on my same schedule for a Saturday. A time and place were set and we made the first decision of the day of whether to go towards Swifty and all it offers with the Bowl, the Tram or Challenger, or to explore the high-speed quads on Andesite.
The day earlier I skied untouched snow near Blue Room and Taylor was willing to follow along, so we rolled up Ramcharger, we got to the gates from SilverKnife and worked our way to the glades. I took off first, which turned out to be the only time of the day that I was in front. We worked our way through the nicely formed moguls between the trees with the frequent untouched pillows where all the new snow was more abundant than the skier's tracks who could find this area.
I got going a bit quick, (trying to stay out front) and took a section of forest off-balance for a rodeo of a ride, but miraculously kept it together to not completely embarrass myself, who knows, maybe he didn't notice. Anyhow, I took a quick stop to take my appreciative moment to enjoy the forest and snow as Taylor skied right past me, not losing a beat. It was at that point I could see how this ski day was going to shape up.
At the base area we went back up Ramcharger and Taylor wanted to scope out Crazy Raven, a run I haven't been to since it first opened. The snow was really consistent with 2-3 inches of fresh sitting lightly on top of soft snow underneath. Once past the rollover, I followed as we went across Mad Wolf to get in position for Elk Park Meadows. About half-way down that section, it dawned on me that we hadn't stopped for the entire shot, actually my legs were the ones with that info, but not to be out done, I kept the pace as we skied powder for 200 yards, then traversed left, 100, then back down, 200 and so on.
We got to the bottom to Thunderwolf and I'll admit I could have maybe used a 5 minute lift line, but we skated up to a ready and willing chair. (Oh, this was the busiest day of the season so far, and will be a top 5 day on the entire year for skier visits). We spun a relatively restful lap exploring the upper terrain park on Ambush and then traversed across the fall line ignoring the smooth, inviting groomed surface of Ambush proper to get to the natural snow on the left edge.
We kept going for a few more laps of trees and bumps with nothing but top to bottoms, could I really be getting rubber legs from little 'ole Andesite? I know, he's the GM, of course I'll let him lead the charge while I keep politely and reverently back, yeah, that was it.
This mountain has tons to offer and with such a deep December, the upper mountain from the Tram is skiing like mid-season, with giant vertical and super-steeps, not to mention the bowl loaded up with snow, then considering Challenger, it's still possible to get your fill with high-speed quads and all the trees in Andesite, clearly I'll just need to ski more to sufficiently explore the biggest skiing in America.
We'll see you out there,