Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Gore Mountain: 12/10/2016
If you spend any time at all in the lodge, on a chairlift or in line to buy a lift ticket, you can't avoid the conversations comparing the ski season to previous years. It's a topic that comes up most frequently in the early weeks of the season, when every bit of progress is measured against the snowfall and trail counts of winters gone by. Every skier has a slightly different take on how 2016-17 is shaping up, but one thing is unanimous: we're off to a way better start than last year.
At this point last year, the ski season was hanging on by just a thread. This year couldn't be more different. At Gore this past weekend we found trail counts growing and what's already open to be in great shape.
With Foxlair and Ruby Run leading to Sunway, Wild Air and Quicksilver, there are essentially three open routes down the front side of the mountain. Snowmaking is in progress on Showcase which will add a fourth route soon. Ropes were dropped on Uncas and Tannery mid-morning, opening the Topridge trail pod and a critical link to the Straightbrook chair and summit terrain. Odds are good that we should see Hawkeye, Cloud and Headwaters this coming weekend (snowmaking is in progress as I type).
As you might expect, we found the best skiing to be wherever the snowmaking crews had most recently been. If you don't mind skiing under the guns, conditions were great on Wild Air and Tannery. Quicksilver had great snow. On the down side Foxlair became icy as it often does by early afternoon, and Uncas could have used a few more passes from the groomer. "Chunkular" was the best descriptor we could come up with for conditions on Uncas.
With a nice snowfall a few days ago and cold temperatures all week, things are looking great for the coming weekend. We should have the most open terrain and best conditions of the season to date. I'm sure we'll have some bumps in the road to deal with, but if the season continues the way it has started, we should be in for a great year.