On Friday December 3rd Mt. Ashland opened the slopes and cranked up the lifts for the earliest opening since 2002. As luck would have it, I had that day off, so me and my wife headed to the mountain.
The upper chairlift, Ariel, wasn’t open so the lines at Windsor chair lift got kind of long, but since it was Friday they never got horrendous.
The skiing was terrific. We weren’t there until about an hour after opening so there wasn’t much untracked powder to be had, but there are always stashes here and there if you know where to find it. Were locals, we know all the spots.
We skied hard and my legs are still feeling the abuse days later. The snow was light all day with the temperature never rising above 28 degrees. The powder was about a foot deep with a nice solid base beneath. The turns were effortless, truly “hero snow” conditions.
The best run of the day was traversing over towards Ariel and skiing the untracked swaths of powder on Dream. There were many 30 to 40 foot sections of untracked powder; Melyssa and I ate em up.
Once all that was skied out we started staying closer to the Windsor chair lift. Chair-line of Windsor was very good. Darting in and out of the trees on the left made for some spectacular face shots as I’d burst back onto the main run through the trees. It also ended in one epic crash. My ski released and was only a couple of feet above me, but the snow was so deep, it took a lot of effort to travel the short distance.
I ended the day by skiing over to the south side and skiing, “the void”, aka, “the worm hole.” I don’t usually venture into this area this early in the season because there’s a lot of fallen timber and it takes a lot of snow to fully cover the wood. I took it slow, though and stayed out of the deepest parts of the trees and was pleasantly surprised at how much coverage there is. It was deep and very light, a great run to end the day on.
This is the first year in 3 years that my family actually bought season passes to Mt. Ashland. The early season and the great conditions make me happy we did. If things keep going the way they’ve been going, we’ll definitely get our moneys worth.
The upper chairlift, Ariel opened for the weekend, but we didn’t ski. Hopefully we’ll get up there sometime in the next few days and hit the stuff off the upper chair.
Yeeha! ski season is upon us and I’m stoked for a great upcoming year. Mt Ashland Lives!!