Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Davis and More

Today was another brilliant day. We reported 2 more inches of snow. Out in The Beavers, Davis and a few other trails opened up. The snow is top notch and the rest of the week is set to be stormy. Looks to me like a great way to bring in the New Year.


Monday, December 27, 2021


Today was another exceptional powder day that caught a few people by surprise. We reported 6" new this morning. We could see something like that again tonight. Great skiing on Pali and in The Alleys. North Glade opened. Loafer and the Beavers chair were open all day. We will see more terrain opening there in the coming days. 

Trevor spent the day in a snowcat in Montezuma Bowl. He gave a terrific foot hold there.

It is hard to describe just how fun the snow was today.

Sunday, December 26, 2021

So Much Good Today

There was so much good today. It snowed much of the day. The skiing is incredible. It was a little blustery up on top, but the snow was soft and sweet. Loafer and the Beavers Lift opened in the afternoon. Loafer was phenomenal. More terrain will be opening there soon. This is a good time to be skiing The Basin.


Thoughts On Holiday Crowds

First, it is snowing again.

I have a few thoughts for you on holiday crowds. We don't really have them. With our Ikon partnership, the Ikon Base Pass is blacked out through Sunday, January 2. That pass accounts for a little more than half of our Ikon visits. As far as holiday crowds go, this is totally counter-intuitive. While some of you may be thinking you need to avoid this week, it is actually a great time to visit. There is snow in the forecast for the next 8 days. We are getting more lifts and terrain open. There is hardly a better time to ski and ride here. We might even see a little action in the Beavers this afternoon.

Pali was sweet yesterday and, with the new snow falling, it is getting better by the hour.

Saturday, December 25, 2021

Christmas Wind

What could be better than getting 13" of new snow on Christmas and Christmas Eve? Well, we opened Pallavicini Trail. While we have had a handful of brief openings over there, today was the real deal. I had a blast skiing powder on The Spine and The Face. What could be better than 13" of snow and Pali opening. Well, this afternoon the "Good Wind" was blowing on the mountain and you know what that means. What could be better than that? Tomorrow, we have a few more inches of snow in the forecast again. Bueno.

We have had a wonderful couple of days. Happy Holidays.


Friday, December 24, 2021

The Way It Is Supposed To Be

This is my kind of Holiday Picture, family and friends standing at the Top of Pali in blizzard. The snowfall was heavy all day long. We reported 6" new at 5 AM and the snow stake (picture below) looks like it has had 5 or 6 more inches during the day. I would call this storm a foot so far with more expected this evening. There were some more openings today, Slalom Slope, Radical and International. I found fantastic powder skiing in Lenawee Parks and Dragon. This is a really great storm and we will ski its bounty in the coming days.

Snowfall since from 5 AM to 3:30 PM  on Friday


5 AM Update


Thursday, December 23, 2021

The Storm Has Begun

While we had snow flurries off an on all day, the snow really picked up at dusk. Can't wait  to see what the snow stake looks like in the morning.


Sunday, December 19, 2021

Full Moon and Skiing Pali

The full moon has been shining brightly on The Basin.

Today was the first public skiing of the season on Pali. The Ski Patrol organized some directed skiing from Main Street to Pali Face. Skiers and riders saw highly variable snow. Despite that, they were "skiing Pali." We will continue to do this intermittently, slowly packing the snow down. New snow, ski it up, pack it down, repeat. Steep terrain is rarely perfect from the start. This kind of work and play sets up steep terrain for great conditions. 


Saturday, December 18, 2021

Loafer Update

Since I last wrote about Loafer, Snowcat Operator Trevor has been very busy. First off, we had some snow which was followed by winching and track packing the trail all the way to the bottom of Beavers Lift. Next, we had some more snow which was followed by winching, dozing and tilling. The snow is still a little thin, but the preparation is literally perfect. While this might not stand up to lots of skier traffic, it just needs a little more snow to do so.

I have to admit, what I skied today was excellent, just a little thin. Snow returns to the forecast starting Thursday. Wont' be long until we are riding Beavers Lift everyday.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Pali Lift Open

Today Pali Lift opened for the season. The cat crew did a tremendous job getting West Wall and Grizzly groomed and ready to ski. For now, those two trails are open, but there may be an occasional other tidbit here and there.

For me, standing at or near the Top of Pali always makes me smile. Riding that lift makes each day at The Basin something special.


Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Snowing This Morning

As I do every time I think it might snow, I got up a little past 5 and looked on the back porch. No snow - profanity, curse, swear. I went about my morning duties. Eventually I turned on 9News to see Matt Renoux reporting from the Copper Mountain Dew Tour. It was dumping and he was totally and completely pasted with snow. Of course I thought that was funny and awesome knowing it was heading our way. So far this morning we have a very high intensity storm dumping 2-3 inches in the base area and it is still snowing. It looks like we may see another burst tomorrow evening. We are so close to getting Pali Lift open.

Friday, December 10, 2021

New Snow

By tomorrow morning we will have reported 6 or 7 inches from this storm. Keep in mind those are Basin Inches. The skiing is really good. We are very close on more terrain and more lifts. We are still sneaking in some occasional openings in Len Parks, Cornice / West Wall and Upper Exhibition. We will be poking into Slalom Slope and Powderkeg before long. Enjoy these pictures someone sent me from an early morning skin today.


Thursday, December 9, 2021

Beautiful Ski Morning

With a couple inches of new snow this morning, the skiing was beautiful. It was creamy. Fingers are crossed for more snow tonight.

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Skinners, Wear Your Headlamps

Last night Kay and I skinned to the top. It got dark just above Black Mountain Lodge. It was snowing and cold and it felt like winter. It was fantastic. We love the uphill program.

Near the Steilhang Hut, I had an interesting encounter with another skinner that wasn't wearing a headlamp. Trying to be polite, I said, "the snowmakers and groomers really appreciate it when skinners wear a headlamp." He, also politely, said he was wearing reflective clothing and his headlamp was in his pocket and he didn't need to wear it. Now I don't think this guy was trying to deliberately blow off our guidelines to make the uphill program work. I just think he didn't understand that employees are out there working on the hill and it is really hard for them to see skinners that are not wearing headlamps. Also, no one should ever ski down without a light. This isn't the backcountry. There are machines, hoses, electric cords, ropes, dozed snow and all kinds of stuff that are only encountered in ski areas.

Anyway, please, please wear your headlamp going uphill and downhill when skinning at night. The Uphill Program is awesome. Please help us make it work.

Skiers in the bootpack during this morning's Rando Race.

Monday, December 6, 2021

Looking West

It is a nice view looking West / Southwest from the top of East Woods across The Beavers. The Snowcat Drivers have done a nice job packing down the snow around the big snowfence and establishing this entrance into The Beavers.


Sunday, December 5, 2021

Center Of The Universe

I look forward to travelling by this sign multiple times on a daily basis. Soon.

Saturday, December 4, 2021

Disruption Roller

The Disruption Roller was out on Pali this week. Parking a winch cat at the top of a steep pitch, the roller is lowered down the slope. Similar to the Track Packing I mentioned a few days ago, the Disruption Roller packs the snow down and helps set it up for skiing. In addition to the packing, the roller breaks slabs of snow, disrupting propagation pathways where slabs break and slide causing avalanches. Good news all around. While similar work can be done with humans and skis, the roller has a bigger impact and reduces humans travelling in these rugged areas.

With all the rolling and track packing we have done, we are very well set up for the storms forecasted for the coming week.


Thursday, December 2, 2021

No Name

During my morning ski, I had to pause for this beautiful view across the Cornice Run towards No Name.  No Name is the region across Highway 6 from the resort and West of The Professor. The Cat Crew has done an amazing job on Cornice Run. We need a bit more snow for the West Wall.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Track Packing

The skiing on a specific trail is much better when we manage the snow prior to opening that trail. Generally speaking, on black and double black diamond trails that means using explosives, ski cutting, ski packing and foot packing. On green and blue trails, especially those without snowmaking, it means packing the snow down with a snowcat. We call this "Track Packing". The compacted snow is firmer and eventually leads to better skiing. The rough snow is better catching and consolidating wind blown new snow. Each time it snows a reasonable amount, we drive the cat over it again. Once there is enough snow the Cat Operator will run the rear tiller over the snow and leave that sweet corduroy surface - and opening soon follows.


Monday, November 29, 2021

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Old Pali Bullwheel and Plaque

As most of you know, we took the old bullwheel from the first Pali Chairlift and moved it up to the very tippy top of the Pali Knob. It is a special place for many of us. We recently added a nice plaque with some thoughtful prose that will make you smile. Once that lift and terrain opens, be sure and take a few extra minutes and walk up to, and enjoy, the scene. There is substantial value in having an employee with a B.A. in English from Boston College.


Saturday, November 27, 2021


I skied Loafer and rode the Beavers Lift. Wow. The Cat Drivers have done a greal deal of work above timberline. They have farmed the captured snow out of the fences. They dozed and winched the first steep pitch. The Ski Patrol has skied up the snow below timberline. The coverage there is fantastic. The Patrollers have foot packed the entire bottom pitch. Ultimately, we will get a winch cat all the way to the bottom of the lift. Getting the Beavers Lift open should closely follow the Pali Lift opening.


Friday, November 26, 2021

First Pali Ride

Yesterday I made my first Pali ride of the season. Always fun. There is a fair bit of snow on the North Side. Grizzly Road looks especially good. The snowfences caught a great deal of snow. The Cat Crew has done a fine job dozing and spreading the snow and topping it off with a corduroy till. Who knows? Another storm or two and..............?


Thursday, November 25, 2021

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all you Basin folks out there. We are enjoying a near perfect bluebird Thanksgiving Day. I just skied for a couple hours and the place looks and feels very nice. Both Thanksgiving and Christmas are a couple of my favorite days at the resort. On these holidays there is a special warmth shared by the people working and visiting the Basin. I like it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

First Chair

People were eager to ski this morning. I took this photo of people walking out to the lift maze and standing in line anxiously waiting for the chairlift to open. 2 or 3 inches of snow fell after folks got on the hill. Another great day at The Basin.


Tuesday, November 23, 2021


Wow, we are having a really good snowmaking session on Ramrod right now. Fan guns are blowing snow from top to bottom. I suspect the snowmakers will keep running there until late Wednesday or early Thursday. There will be a fair bit of equipment clean up and dozing to be done once the snowblowers are turned off. Look for a good Ramrod opening by week's end.


Sunday, November 21, 2021

Swirling Clouds

Last night's storm was steady for a few hours and we reported 2" of new snow. I took this photo yesterday morning while riding Lenawee looking across the top of Pali, across Highway 6 and into a region we call "No Name." The swirling clouds, sun and shadows always deliver exceptional views. The skiing is still good. We might see some snow mid-week.


Saturday, November 20, 2021

Intermittent Showers

We saw light, intermittent showers throughout the day. At dusk, right now, there is a little bit steadier of a snowfall going on. It is November 20 and the skiing is very good. Molly Hogan Chair and the Snowsports School opened today. Lower Wrangler opened. Next week's snowmaking energy will go towards getting Ramrod fully open and widening Molly Hogan.


Thursday, November 18, 2021

Uphill Access Opens Saturday At 5 AM

Uphill Access will open for the season Saturday at 5 AM. For now, Uphill Access is closed during the day during ski area operational hours. Be sure and have an Uphill Access Pass. They are free for A-Basin season pass holders. For non-AB pass holders, the Uphill Access Pass is $79 with $10 going to the National Forest Foundation.

Don't forget, it is early season. The place probably looks very different from when you skied last season. There is lots of snowmaking and grooming equipment on the hill. Stay away from it. Variable snow conditions exist.  Be safe. Be careful. Keep you speeds down. And have loads and loads of fun.

For details about the program, go to Uphill Access.


Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Cornice / West Wall

It is odd. Denver may set a record for its latest first measurable snowfall and The Basin has really, really good skiing. We have a 24" base of natural snow. Snowmaking has gone very well. In order to pack down the snow and offer some fun skiing and riding, the Ski Patrol has been doing some short term openings in areas without snowmaking. Trevor has done an outstanding job grooming the drifts out the Cornice Run. This afternoon I got a couple hour opening on Cornice / West Wall. The groomed Cornice Run was superb and the steeper, ungroomed West Wall was soft and carvy.  

The skiing is so much fun.

Monday, November 15, 2021