November 27, 2000

Finally!

It was a nice little dump. The hill reported 34 cm up top and there was about 10 cm of dense snow in my driveway this morning. If this had fallen on an existing base and the hill had been open, it would have been one sweet day. As it was it certainly moved the hill one giant step closer to opening.

With the creation of China Might I found a nice exercise walk is to head up past the Bear's Den to the flats in the middle of Lizard and then come down upper Freeway and China Might. I had done that yesterday and repeating it today I found a major change in the snow quantity and quality. The snow up there was high calf to over knee deep, which does not sound like a lot more than the calf deep I had reported earlier, but it was more like walking on a snowpack with things sticking out than walking on ground with a snow coating. The snow quality seemed nice and I suspect one could have had a pretty nice run down there if you weren't too fond of your skis or board.

The hill has put out the early season avalanche warning signs and did quite a bit of blasting this morning, presumably to protect the road being used by folks working on the lift. Being an extreme avalanche wuss, I certainly pay attention to these signs when planning my route and today I saw an example of why that is probably a good idea. When I was right in the middle of Lizard a loud roar drew my attention to a naturally triggered slide coming off of the ridge above. I was well protected by terrain and pretty certain that there would not be enough snow to travel far down the bowl, but it still raises the hair on the back of your neck to see one of these things coming down directly above you. Nothing came with in probably a kilometer of where I was, but it did serve as a warning that care is now needed when heading up the hills.

The weather folks are predicting more snow through out the week, so hopefully my gloomy prediction of a mid December opening will prove unduly pessimistic. Go, Griz, go!


Tradition seems to require the first snow shot be of old Mr. Mazda. It doesn't look that deep (about 10 cm), but it was quite dense.

The avalanche warning sign at the bottom of a still rather grassy Lizard Trail proved to be appropriate.

The next four pictures are all taken from the same general area in Lizard Bowl. This is looking at Easter Bowl.

Bow with Arrow in the upper right. The snow was nice, but the weeds were plentiful.

Sunnyside

Looking across upper China Wall and up the Elk Valley, with the Bear's Den in the center and Mt. Proctor and Hosmer on the left.

The entrance to China Might from Freeway might be a little constricted just yet for some low intermediates, but it should become fatter with more snow.

There were lots of tracks up on the hill, but the crowds still seemed to prefer the delights of the Bunny Run.