Old Mans Bowl, Hippy trees- new snow, variable conditions, waining coverage
Signs of Unstable Snow
Confidence in Rating:
We went for a tour in the convict area today and it proved to be a worthy adventure.
Coverage has diminished substantially at the lake level since my last visit to the area and we started our tour today with a walk through the sage until we found connected snow patches that allowed for on ski travel up the moraine to tobacco flats.
Ski crampons were necessary equipment for the entirety of our tour today.
We climbed to the top of Old Man’s bowl this morning and found new snow totals in this area to average around 1-2”. Accumulation is quite sporadic overall with several areas of old snow exposed and shallow depressions holding up to 4” in some areas. In practice, I would say it felt more like a trace of new snow, but shoot ill take it.
Skiing in Old man’s bowl would be best described as 3 dimensional and variable dust on crust. On the whole, the new snow did a great job of hiding variations in the surface and providing an added challenge in navigating the highly textured old snow.
We decided to head to the Hippy trees this afternoon and found more pleasant riding conditions. New snow accumulations were the same in this area however the old snow surface in this sheltered location primarily consisted of a thin zipper crust over well-developed near-surface facets. 2” felt like 6” for the bulk of the descent through the trees. It is worth noting that this facet crust combo was quite reactive, despite the very minimal load. If this storm had provided a more substantial load of new snow, I would be keeping a close eye on my terrain choice. Not concerning at the moment but a good thing to keep an eye on in the future.
Our descent through tobacco flats and down the moraine could best be described as a true adventure. Coverage resembles what we may typically expect in late May and while we were able to keep our boards on almost to the road, there was quite a bit of sage dodging and certainly, some shenanigans involved, particularly descending the final pitch off the morane.
Moderate , N
Today was Cold! A bit shocking after such a long run of warm and pleasant weather, but shoot it was nice to feel some crisp air again! Temperatures were in the single digits for the bulk of the day, approaching 0°F at higher elevations. North winds picked up a bit this afternoon which led to wind chills that numbed the face. Cloud cover was intermittent today with periods of light snow in the morning. We spent some time in the Ping-Pong ball today but we were also rewarded with extended periods of broken skies and brief spots of sunshine. All in all, it was a beautiful winter’s day!