Backcountry conditions have stayed remarkably good despite wide fluctuations in temperature and wind over the past week. Harvesting powder on low angle, sheltered, north aspects has been the name of the game. It’s a relatively safe way to avoid the lingering deep slab avalanche potential while still having a blast.
Mellow Yellow...nothing to complain about here.
Fields of Joy
Don’t let the good looks fool you. SAC report on increased faceting and continued deep slab instability on Silver Peak
Two well known skiers from Jackson Hole were killed in an avalanche yesterday. Steve Romeo and Chris Onufer were found this morning on Ranger Peak in Teton National Park. This devastating avalanche season is now at 27 fatalities in the US.
ESPN report on Teton avalanche fatalities
Steve Romeo's ski mountaineering website
C2 Bowl sees the first tracks of the morning.
Squaw was firing on all cylinders Friday. Conditions were rocking and so were the crowds. Cars were parked along Squaw Valley road about a half mile past the post office. At 11AM traffic was still bumper to bumper all the way to Squaw Valley Academy.
Palisades opened Friday morning despite heavy traffic on the Reverse Traverse.
The backcountry was excellent on Friday but still commanded respect. Local Ben Brackett was caught and killed in a deep slab avalanche on Thursday in Ward Canyon. The slide stepped down three layers reflecting a snowpack more similar to Colorado than California. The Sierra Avalanche Center is always a great resource especially during times like this. A persistent weak layer is still alive and kicking.
Robb Gaffney drops into the Light Towers Friday morning.
Skiers rejoice at Loft Bar Wednesday afternoon.
Conditions went from good to great on Wednesday. Kind of funny that the first day of the season where you didn’t need to worry about hidden stumps and rocks fell on leap day. Storm totals should be about 4 to 6 feet at the upper elevations by Friday.