Sunday, April 3, 2011
Gore Mountain: 04/02/2011
The big April Fool's Day snowstorm turned out to be a joke, just a couple inches to frost the trees at Gore, but that was fine because what we all really wanted was a weekend of spring skiing. And that's exactly what we got.
Pulling into the lot sometime after 10am, the temperature was already just above 40, nearly 20 degrees warmer than at our arrival time last Sunday. On our first run from the top of the gondola down Wild Air, you could feel the snow transitioning from drier packed powder at the top to full-on spring conditions at the bottom, and you knew that with a little help from the sun, by afternoon those spring conditions would work their way all the way to the summit.
Since there hadn't been a hard freeze overnight, the base underneath Friday's new snow was soft, which made everything ski great: steeps, bumps, cruisers and trees.
We spent the majority of our day skiing the Straightbrook and High Peaks chairs off the summit. The snow there was so good we just couldn't seem to break away other than for a run down the to base for a quick lunch break. Favorite glades were Straightbrook and Darby Woods.
Except for the Ski Bowl, the entire mountain was open with great coverage, including all the glades. It's amazing to compare today's coverage and conditions to April 2 of last year, when we skied in 70-degree temps with bare woods and trails rapidly melting out into mud and slush.
As if to drive home the contrast between the two years, at around 2:30 a snow squall blew in creating near-whiteout conditions for about 20 minutes.
Despite the snow squall, both Rumor and Lies had baked in the sun plenty long enough to turn conditions there into beautiful spring corn snow. Beth will only ski Lies when it is in top condition, and Daniel had never skied Lies before, but the snow was so good that the three of us lapped it twice.
Daniel was having such a good day that he declared he was ready to try Rumor. So while Beth made a third lap on Lies, I took Daniel for his first-ever run down Rumor. He did great, and called it his favorite run for the day.
Some skiers wait all season for days like this. With sunny skies, warmer temperatures and soft snow it's easy to see why. Sunday should be another good one, and we've got our fingers crossed for next weekend and beyond.