Tuesday, March 16, 2010


This weekend at the Asulkan Cabin brought us some Very Good Things.


The first significant snowfall in months (causing almost the entire west side of the Asulkan Valley to pull out on Friday night).

Superb, but conservative, skiing.

The best crash ever, earning Steve the new nickname of "Tomahawk".

And, last but not least, new foamies! Thanks to the ACC maintenance crew.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010


There was an interesting graph posted on the bulletin board at the Visitors Centre on Saturday. Something like this:

It showed height of snowpack vs time as measured at the Fidelity Research Station near Rogers Pass. The upper line shows the record high snowpack recorded, the lower line shows the record low, and the middle line shows this year. It all looked so promising back in November!

We haven't been backcounty skiing for a couple of weeks now; lying low while the avalanche hazard has gone through the roof. We finally ventured forth with Fred into Hermit Meadows on Saturday. It was blazing hot on these south facing slopes and we suffered on the way up.

It took a supreme effort to toil for that last long hour up to Tupper Ridge. The snow was still cold behind Tupper and we had one good run on the gentle north facing bowl.

Up to the ridge again and then back the way we came to battle the wet grabby snow with gritted teeth. It wasn't too bad at first, but as we descended lower we got into areas that had already been in the shade for a couple of hours that had developed a nasty crust. Oh it was diabolical. The worst conditions I've ever had in Rogers Pass bar none! Hard crust on top with wet and sometime bottomless rotten snow underneath. It was hopeless. We had to literally side slip most of the way down; all attempts to turn resulted in an immediate punishing crash. I shudder just to think back.

Ah well. We picked our way down and arrived at the car at dusk, alive and well to fight another day.