I remember that thread title from a ways back and it will always seem to come up applicable somewhere in any given season.
Certainly Whiteface was not the best of times yesterday (12/13) however it was the best of three days I have had there this season so far. Sadly I missed last Sunday which was what a 20 yr plus veteran ski patroller told me was the absolute hands down best day he ever saw there. I chose Gore instead because the storm was supposed to hit harder to the south. Gore was OK but I blew it. Such is life.
The wind howled all day and temps never really warmed up but the guns were blasting and they were trying to shore up things after the deluge this past week. They did one admirable job on Mountain Run and it was sweet. Soft billowy mounds of chalky easy carving fluff with moguls forming were the choice of the day. Skiers right along the pipeline was exquisite and no matter how I tried to ski different lines I just kept getting pulled into that side. Any time you can ski that 1000 or so vert. and not hear your edges or skid out a tail here or there is an exceptional day. The only thing open from the gondola summit was good old Excelsior. I strongly think they should rename that trail "Crusher Run." In an attempt to groom what the rains did a number on they ground a little too deep and most of the frozen granular was of the granite type.
They also had Boreen open from mid down but it was quite a lot like Excelsior. Upper and Lower Valley and Drapers were pretty good but no where near as nice as Mt. Run.
I started out with first run on my birthday Volants. I demoed the carving models last year with demo bindings and really loved the way then handled. These Machetes with titanium Salomon bindings with big honking risers are a little different. These babies are very torsionally rigid and I was actually over carving on the icy groomer trails. Hop tail skid turns do not work and resulted in my knees practically getting separated from my legs. Once I learned to back off a little and lay into them gradually they started to take off like a rocket. I seemed to actually be turning as fast as I thought about it. I definitely felt more comfortable and in control at speeds somewhat faster than I usually do on my Volkls or Elans. I guess it's a lot like driving where certain vehicles handle and control better than others even with the same driver.
After a good taste of the Volants I switched back to the Volkls and finished out the day continuously ripping Mt. Run. I know, I know; most skivtlers would say "how boring" but considering the other three days I have had this season it was really sweet. Besides, I have to get my ski legs back in shape and this AM I could barely walk after crawling out of bed. I may be looking forward to Thursday or Friday if things work out and maybe getting my buddy Greg out for his first day. Shirley promised me she would get out this Saturday as all pre Christmas necessities are now taken care of.
Yesterday was very encouraging considering the deluge that occurred this week and right now it is snowing major big time. Things are looking good. Jimski