Monday, December 26, 2011
Gore Mountain: 12/26/2011
If it's not going to snow, at least we've had weekend after weekend of sunny, crisp blue skies. That lack of snowfall must be keeping people away, because crowds were surprisingly light at Gore Mountain today, the day after Christmas. That's too bad, because there's good skiing on the mountain.
Terrain has expanded quite a bit since last weekend, with Hawkeye, Cloud and Headwaters open at the summit, and Showcase and Sleighride now open on the lower mountain. It seems like many of the open trails have been re-blown by the snowmaking crews a number of times this season, so conditions have been reasonably good on the open terrain.
The snowmaking crews have been the heroes of December 2011, and snowmaking operations continued all day on Wild Air and at the summit. Viewed from the top of Bear Mountain or from the Straightbrook chair, the entire summit area seemed to be engulfed in a man-made blizzard, with guns blowing on Cloud, Steilhang, Open Pit, and Lies. I would expect all of those trails to be opening over the coming week.
We didn't ski every open trail, but the pick of the day had to be Hawkeye. Huge snowmaking whales covered the trail top to bottom with snow that ranged from edgeable styrofoam to packed powder. In my opinion, Hawkeye can be a ho-hum trail when it's groomed flat and fast, but when it's left bumped up like today the difficulty level goes up a notch and the fun factor goes up five.
If you ask me, Gore couldn't have picked a better year to upgrade its snowmaking plant, and those 160 new guns are definitely making a difference. But some natural snow would sure be nice...