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May 6, 2003, Sierra's and Agassiz Peak,AZ

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Posted by Zap on 5/14/03 7:39am
Jill and I spent the last month trying to do some spring skiing in the Sierra's but all that powder changed our plans.  Left Seattle on April 9 and had a spring day at White Pass, we were rained out at Mt. Hood Meadows the next day and fogged out at Mt. Ashland, OR.  Arrived in the Tahoe area to ski Signal Peak but the trailhead was dirt.  Headed for Donner Pass for the evening and awoke to a storm. Originally, we planned to ski from old Donner Pass eastward towards Donner Lake but a powder storm and winds made visibility nil so we rode the lifts at Sugar Bowl and cut freshlines on the deserted slopes.  Had to chain-up to leave the area and drove over the pass to Truckee where it was raining.  The camp area where we were staying had no snow and it was drizzling as we went to bed.  Woke up early to get the ski report and decided to open the RV's side door but it wouldn't move.  Opened the curtains and I started yelping.  There was over 2 feet of snow on the ground and we were surrounded by piles of snow.  Alpine Meadows received 3 feet overnight and it was still snowing.  Chained up, dug out and went powder skiing in a blizzard at Meadows  :D.  Homewood was next on our list based on a recent article in Couloir by Craig. Arrived there just as the payloader was clearing one of their lots.  Asked the driver for an overnight spot and he scooped out an area in front of the south lodge for the RV. Homewood is a low key area with fantastic tree skiing and usually a local spot during storms.We awoke to sunshine 20 plus inches of new - moist diaper day.

We had planned to ski Red Lake Peak at Carson's Pass but the avy danger was high. So we got some cheap tickets at Heavenly which received over 4 feet in the last 2 days. Mott Canyon was at its best :) Next, headed south towards the Sierras around Mammouth and arrived in time for another powder storm which deposited 15".  The avy conditions went high so we rode the lifts with our half price tickets and had freshlines all day.  Headed north a few miles to try the June Lake area which is low key but a local powder stash with no crowds.  Lots of big terrain available from the area.

Needed to get to Flagstaff,AZ for our  Grand Canyon trip so we cut across Death Valley which was a shock to the system(hot at 200 feet below sea level).  Stopped at the south rim of the Grand Canyon which had an overnight snowstorm that left a light coating of white on the upper canyon walls.  Looked down to see a few places that we would be travelling thru within a few days.  The next morning we arrived at Arizona Snowbowl which is  the local ski area just outside Flagstaff,AZ.  The area was closed but they just received 10" of powder overnight. :) Are we living good or what ! A local provided some beta and we followed his skin tracks to his snow study site on Agassiz  Peak(12,356').  Hummphrey Peak(12,643") is adjacent and creates a great bowl.  We had great powder in the shade.  The next morning we departed on our 2 week rafting and hiking adventure in the Grand Canyon.

After 2 weeks of 2 billion year old rock formations and various shades of brown, we needed a snow fix and drove back home along Hwy 395 and the Sierras.  Stopped in at Squaw Valley for a sunny, spring skiing day and a soak in the outdoor hot tub at mid mountain.  The Sierras received over 100" of snow during the month of April.  We didn't experience the classic Sierra corn just that fluffy powder.:)  Zap
its painful to read this so early in the morning...........sounds like a nice month ;)

aaah, how lovely...you sure lucked out on the weather!!

Welcome back, Zap.  After watching Tim's video clip and reading your report here, I've decided to shadow you wherever you go for a while.  So....what're your plans for this Sunday?  Going somewhere nearby, perhaps, where you'll be surprised to find a foot and a half of fresh, stable powder fallen overnight and not another skier within miles?  

Hope your float trip went as well as your corn skiing extravaganza.



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2003-05-14 14:39:30