Where to this year? Alta was high on the list, but empty slopes coincided with full hotels. Jackson is still suffering from questionable snow. Fernie was a bit too much travel. So, when in doubt, go for stable, deep, maritime snow. You won't get chest-deep fluff, but you'll get a solid base through all sorts of weather. And we indeed saw all sorts of weather, starting with Pacific powder, mellowing to spring corn, and finishing with a little storm skiing.
Really, I can't believe how nice the weather was. It's like a little bit of California followed me north.
BC Coast Range
kinds of snow, from powder to slop, can be found over 5,000' of
vertical. The crevasse in the foreground marks the point of
separation between the Piccolo snowfield and the ridge extending east
of Whistler Peak.
The Octopus goes along for the ride on
Phat Skis Leave Phat Tracks
The SkiVT-L Edition Voelkl Explosivs track up fresh snow
on Piccolo. A few inches of snow the night before was enhanced in the
lee of the ridge, providing a cornice to huck and wind-packed snow to
A short climb
from the groomed track lets me phloat the phats in a few hundred feet
of steep, untracked powder on the Blackcomb Glacier headwall.
Thousands of skiers passed below, but only a few people seemed
interested in the goods.
selects the lesser of many evils on the Garnet Bowl headwall (she's at
the upper-right corner of the rocks).
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