Sitting here in May thinking back to the blur that is the last 5 months of powder skiing. The 2017 season in the Wasatch was one to remember. The sheer volume of H2O that fell from the sky was awesome. Temperatures were warmer than usual, which made for some less blower snow at times, but also for a base that stacked up fast. We hit 100″ base levels at Alta/Snowbird in January and by February hit the highest recorded base depth for that time of year, ever. This past week it snowed 4 feet in the last week of April on a 150″ base. Snowbird was as filled in as I’ve ever seen it, with what are traditionally steep technical lines skiing like open bowls. Come along for a trip down powder memory lane.
Didn’t have the camera out much early season, but December served up many a storm day. I wanted to work on video editing this season, and have a couple of shorts to show for it. The first was a creamy pow day in January with friends
January brought some incredible storm cycles, with Atmospheric rivers pounding the West Coast and heading straight for Utah thereafter. One such cycle wrapped up right around the Outdoor Retailer show, when friend Matt was in town for “work”.
After 3+feet of snow fell in a wild series of storms, we set out early one morning for some classic powder skiing across the street from Alta.
I got in on the action as well of course
One theme this year was storms with Southwest flow. Brighton, who does well in such circumstances, recorded the highest snowfall totals for the Central Wasatch, outdoing the perennial powerhouses of Alta and Snowbird, who prefer their flow from the top left. Another place that does well in Southwest flow is Snowbasin, and I finally had the chance to join a friend who skis there nearly daily for a 24 inch pow day at the end of January.
We skied gondola laps all morning in deep if not slightly heavy snow. It was a treat
Snowbasin trail, fresh pow, good times
That storm series continued to pound Utah with increasingly lighter snow. Friend Jesse Paul made his way into town with his pops and proceeded to crush Alta in all time conditions. After the storm cleared, Hannah and I were able to join them for a day of sunny pow skiing. The combination of a deep base and low sun angle made for some of the most scenic Wasatch backdrops I’ve seen to date. Here’s Jesse skiing Supreme with Superior looming large and Wasatch absolutely buried.
Feburary brought more snow and more good times. Had a last minute heads up that Jeff aka MMP was coming through with his band of jolly gentlemen from college. We got to rebate our one run and done last year with a great tour of Snowbird’s offerings on a shallow pow day. Showing other folks around can remind you how fortunate we are to call this range home
Before meeting up with them, I was able to grab 3 runs in Mineral by myself
Then proceeded to show these smelly tele dudes how we do
Couple of days later, Corey cruised in a blurr above Snowbird
Recent reverse transplants Nick and Camille, who recently moved the wrong way across the US, were able to score a great heavy pow day on their trip here in Feb
Near the end of the month Dr Ben Johnson came through town and quite possibly timed the perfect trip. Snowed feet upon feet of increasingly light density goodness. Video evidence
On March 1st I probably had my favorite day of the year. With the birth of our daughter this year, we’ve had to change the way we spend time at the mountain, usually bringing her up and switching off with one watching the baby and one shredding the gnar. But on March 1st, we had a babysitter, and a bluebird pow day line up so Hannah and I could spend the day schussing like we used to. Here she is exploderizing the pow
She took one of me too!
The next week we had some high pressure and a deep stable snowpack – Mike D and I were able to check off a Wasatch classic in great snow conditions
April went out with a bang, and Matty B was in town visiting to enjoy it. Matt had never snowboarded in the west, and I knew that SNowbird would blow his mind compared to Gore mountain. But I didnt expect it to snow a foot before our first day out. Matty’s first pow turns, crushing it!
It was a hoot to show him around on a powder day and be there to see his first hit of the good stuff
And then in the last week of April it snowed another 4 feet, of the blower variety.
Incredible year for the Wasatch, glad I could be here to enjoy it. Looks like we still have a long spring ahead as well. Thanks for looking