September 4, 2015
September 3, 2015
I got up this morning after a long week on the road, in California and Texas, by car and plane and car again… to find that as the clouds parted, there was fresh snow on the Cascades. The first snowfall of the season always makes me happy. It means winter is coming. Skiing is near. Chuck is happy.
June 16, 2013
November 24, 2012
Thanksgiving was Opening Day of the 2012-13 ski season at my local “hill”, Mt. Bachelor. Nicholas is home for the 4 day holiday so he & I got up early and hit the slopes. We didn’t quite make first tracks, but we we’re the last of the first wave to get the good stuff.
Conditions were surprisingly good, given that two-thirds of the snow had fallen the night before. I stuck to the groomers – as tempting as the powder might have been – my out-of-shape legs and the threat of snags and rocks kept me away (OK, I confess, I stole a couple of turns off the edge a few times.)
We wore ourselves out. Nick had a pair of face-plants. I never fell, but 49 year old legs setting the pace – even with my lazy edge-to-edge skiing style – for my 18 year old was enough to leave me limping by days end! (ahhhh love that hot tub!)
As a bonus, I strapped a small video camera to my pole, and later my boot, so you could follow along. I re-enabled my dormant Youtube account (which Google forced me into making it a Google+ account – and NO, I won’t be your friend on G+ – I have no intention of using it) to upload the video to share. Note that Youtube tried to auto-correct out the natural leaning that goes with skiing in order to “image stabilize” the movie. I find the result rather trippy. Enjoy!
September 23, 2012
Yes, I’m lame. Yes, this is a lame ass under construction sign. Yes, you haven’t seen this since Geocities shut down. Just be glad it isn’t an animated gif – not to mention the lack of blink tags and auto-playing midi sounds here.
Yes, I’m WAY behind on blogging here. I owe you all updates from:
- The 2012 Monte Shelton Rally (we literally drove the wheels off the 450sl!)
- My latest Lemons Adventure with the Clowntown Roadshow
- My one-day sprint to join the NW Oil Leak Tour
I promise I’ll get them done soon.
January 15, 2012
I usually ski every Saturday, but decided to skip yesterday. It has been a long time since we’ve seen significant snow around here, and Saturday was clear and windy. (VERY windy.) I stayed home and did some document archeology concerning something I’ll talk about soon. That wind brought us a gift though…
Today I awoke to a dusting of snow on the ground and the mountains west of us wrapped in dark clouds. Temps were very low, but the wind was gone. I tossed the ski gear on and dashed up to Mt. Bachelor to arrive in time for the lifts opening. Per usual, I parked at Sunrise (shorter walk to the lifts!) and was one of the first 20 people on the hill. The runs off Sunrise were groomed the night before, so I headed east to my favorite lift, the Rainbow Chair. Rainbow is normally unloved. It is an old, slow triple rather than a swift new detachable quad lift, so it sees very little traffic. I love it though because it covers a ton of vertical, including some near-timberline chutes high up on the east face of Mt. B. From the top of Sunrise I crossed over and took the run I-5. I-5 is a wonderful cruiser which had also been groomed the night before, so not really what I was looking for. Riding the old Rainbow chair up into the clouds I traversed east to the top of Flying Dutchman.
The snow… was sublime. Nice firm base, with anywhere from two- to ten- inches of light, fluffy powder depending upon wind-loading. A mere handful of people had been on this run, and it was possible to carve fresh turns on many lines. The snow was deep enough to allow you to aggressively ski the fall line without building too much speed. Perfect powder really. I made many linked turns through several chutes down into the trees where the run normalizes into a cruiser. It was so good I skied Flying Dutchman several times over. Once it became carved up I skied Rainbow’s lift line seeking untracked expanses. Feeling like I’d carved it all up after 4 trips, I started heading west, hoping to hit the long, steeps of the Northwest Express. While riding the Skyliner Express I heard from folks who had just been over there who disappointed me with news of wind-slab and slick conditions. I bailed off to the left, took the Cliffhanger chute down to the road that cuts across the mountain to the Summit and Sunrise lifts, and once again took the Rainbow lift line; another run down the Dutchman, and then down off the mountain to the Sun Bar for a rest to warm my now-frozen toes.
The base was now swarming with people, with the word now out that it was a Powder Day, so I took my Seasons Pass holder’s privilege of heading home – Satisfied that I’d skimmed the powdery cream off the mountain.
It is supposed to keep snowing all week.
December 26, 2011
We flew from central Oregon to Colorado to visit my parents for the holidays. We (reluctantly) flew United, as our preferred carrier (Alaska) had no available flights for the trip. United has never failed to fail me every time I’ve flown them. This time was no exception: Sue had all her prescription medicines stolen from our baggage. I have no idea if it was UAL or TSA at fault here, but I’m now in the complaint process with both. It is sure to be a Kafkaesque journey.