Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Snow Later This Week

Beautiful out there today. The latest forecast shows a better chance for snow starting Thursday. Pali trail is now open all day long. We are squeaking in a few more trails including East Gully near Lenawee Parks. I had a great morning skiing several runs off Lenawee Mountain, Black Mountain, and Pallavicini Lifts. Very nice surfaces. The best, of course, was The Spine with smooth, wind packed layer on the upper half.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Lynx Lane

Another expansion to Ace's Wild Adventure. Scattered around the lower mountain we have prepared three new adventure trails in the woods. Not only are they fun for kids (and maybe some adults), they have nature based interpretive signs at the entrances. I hope all you kids out there (young and old) get a chance to spin through these fun spots. Look at our trail map to figure out just where these trails are.

Taking Shape

She is really starting to come around. Each day is a little bit better.

Great Winter Day

Just a great winter ski and ride day. The sun was out from open to close. It was breezy, but just enough to start filling in the sweet spots. I think people were extremely happy to be skiing The Spine, Main Street, and The Face. Two especially good skis today, Upper West Alley and a wind buffed West Wall.

Friday, January 27, 2012

More and More Pali Trail

As expected, today's was fantastic. Snow, Pali, clouds, sunshine, good wind, you name it, we had it. Saturday and Sunday will be sunny and gorgeous. Pali trail will open about noon this weekend. Don't be late.

A Fat 6"

Boy, does the snow look good this morning. Lots of it. A very fat 6". Who knows how deep it will be on the leeward slopes? The clouds are breaking away and the sky is starting to light up. Vintage Colorado today. And you will get Pali in the afternoon.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Pali Trail Opened Today

Pali Main Street, The Spine, Pali Face, David's Run, and The 2nd Alley were open for directed skiing from 1:30 - 3:00 today. The same terrain will be open at approximately the same time tomorrow Friday. With a forecast of 4-8" for tonight and tomorrow, the timing of today's opening was ideal. The snow "you guys" compacted is ideally prepped for some freshies tomorrow.

It is always a pleasure for me to ski my favorite run on the planet, The Spine. Remember, these are still early season conditions and the entire Pali zone is Extreme Terrain for experts only. Today I saw a lot "ski everyday", local, expert, A-Basin skiers making nice controlled turns at a reasonable speed. That me feel good. This is not the time of year or the kind of conditions to be maching down Pali Face. Take your time out there and enjoy yourself.

Special kudos to Jamie Ober and the Ski Patrol for pulling off this opening. They have had a very intense week getting the terrain ready. Be sure and thank these guys and give them a pat on the back.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

More Skiing

It has been a very busy week for the avalanche crew. We have added skiing in Falcon and Dragon. The cat crew continues to buff out the Lenawee Parks zone and other nooks and crannies. There have been some limited openings in the Standard / 13 Cornices area.

I know the million dollar question is "When is Pali opening?" Of course my answer is that sort of waffling, "I'm not sure, but soon" b.s. that drives my wife crazy. Well, maybe I know a little more than that. There is still signifcant avalanche work to do. Pallavicini is a major avalanche path and opening it takes weeks of extensive work by the patrollers. Over the next few days, you will be hearing lots of very loud bangs coming from that area. We have a long list of procedures for explosives, ski cuts, ski packing, ski testing, snowpits and more. The good news is that we are getting close. Sometime in the next few days, we will likely open it for an hour or two one afternoon. A little bit of ski pressure packs the snow down. After the packed snow sits overnight it gets firmer. The next day we will open it for another hour or two and pack it some more. We will continue with this limited type of pressure and access until we think she is ready to be open all day. This way we build a good and durable pack out there. The snow is fragile. Opening it at 8:30 one day and skiing it into the ground is very short sighted. Our goal is to get it open soon and have it be good all season.

I know you want it. I know you want it now. It's coming. Give us a few more days.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Montezuma Bowl Update

Many of you have asked questions about Motnezuma Bowl. We have not yet picked an opening date for the bowl. These past storms have been favorable back there. The snow farming at the Summit the last week was outstanding. The cat drivers, using our winch cat, have used that captured snow to establish the entrances to Larkspur and Columbine. They are heading back there again tonight and will continute to pack their way down the bowl. The ski patrollers were covering some ground back there this morning. So we have a ways to go, but have made some great progress. I am anxious to get that bowl open. Let's hope the next couple of storms are working in our favor there. I'll keep you updated.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

More Beauty Shots

It is hard to describe just how awesome today was. The North Side, The Upper Mountain, and The Lower Mountain all shined. A good time was had by all. The Ski Patrol has been hard at the avalanche work. I anticipate a lot of terrain to either open or have directed skiing this week. Stay tuned as the week progresses. Please be patient and stay out of closed terrain. We experienced a fair bit of avalanche activity this morning. There will be a whole lot more terrain soon.

Pali Is Good

This is the way it is supposed to look.

Heavy Snow Last Night

It didn't start until after dark. 6" new at report time and snowing heavily. Snowplows, snowcats, Bobcats, snowmobiles, shovelers, all busy as beavers this mornings. I couldn't think of a better first full day for Pali Lift. Come on out and enjoy the fun. You know it is going to ski a whole lot deeper than 6".

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Pali Lift Open

It is about bloody time. We opened Pallavicini Lift today about 1:30. We expect it be open for the rest of the season. Off the top you can ski West Wall, Slalom Slope, North Chute, Powderkeg, Scudder, Challenger, Radical, and Grizzly Road. I have to tell you, Slalom Slope was fantastic. Big snow and W-NW wind forecast for tonight. Tomorrow could be special. I would expect to see directed skiing on the North Side next week. Lots going on right now. Come enjoy it.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Great Snow

Well, we keep getting more snow. Better break out those fat skis. We will have terrain to match the skis soon.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Slalom Slope Open

Access Slalom Slope via Cornice Run. Pali lift will open very soon... stay tuned!

It Is Here

Ok it keeps snowing. The forecast looks awesome. West Wall and Slalom Slope are now periodically open. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday look great. I think the "NEXT" lift might be VERY SOON.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


4" new today with perfect W-NW winds. Ideal set-up. More snow in the forecast. I hope you know what this means. West Wall and Slalom Slope are better with each hour.

Monday, January 16, 2012


It is snowing. The forecast is coming true today and looks good again later in the week. The winds have been from the W-NW which is just perfect to fill that old Basin in. Let's keep it coming.

Last month one of you suggested opensnow.com for weather forecasts. I have been following it and really like it.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Kid's Club Arapahoe

This time of year we host Kid's Club Arapahoe most Saturdays. These are great programs for youngsters to learn how to ski and to how to improve their skiing. Week after week, the kids develop a rhythym and have lots of fun spending time with the same instructors and same other students. It is also good fun for the parents who can enjoy a day of skiing while their kids are out having fun. I think these Saturdays have become major social get-togethers for many parents. Although my kids are grown now, I always liked letting someone else teach them to ski and I could just go skiing with them and have fun. I wasn't sure what the two kids in the bottom picture were doing, but it was worth a photo.

On another note, the forecast still says 1-2" tonight and 3-5" tomorrow. Good, good, good.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Patrollers and Cat Drivers

The patrollers and cat drivers have done a fine job this week. Cornice Run grooming is outstanding. Itis ready to open. Grizzly is extremely close. The forecasted snow for Sunday night and Monday is very encouraging. The patrollers did a little directed skiing with the public on the West Wall. In anticipation of the upcoming storms, the patrollers have been all ove the North Side doing explosives work, ski cutting, and other various compaction. Stay tuned. Next week may be quite different.