DCSki and EpicSki Gathering
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Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
September 29, 2007
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
I wanted to get an early start on planning a get together for the coming season. I cross posted this event last year and most attendees were from DCSki although most were cross posters. Years past brought about a dozen from EpicSki. It looks like there will be a spin off event at western NY's Holiday Valley. Here's a copy of the my first post at Epic and a link to discussion there. Let's get some feedback here as well and get a consensus on where and when:

I thought we should start a discussion about a Gathering for the Western PA, MD, OH, and WV Gathering. In years passed we've gotten together at Seven Springs mostly because they have the best snowmaking and most coverage in the region. They can rebound fast after a melt down too. We've usually held it in January or February.

So I ask all interested people, what do you think? Should we stay at Seven Springs, move to another location such as Blue Knob, Wisp, Timberline, Holiday Valley, NY.? Should we pick a location like Roundtop or Whitetail to entice Philly area skiers?

What about dates, pick now and hope for the best, wait until the start of the season and pick a date when long term weather forecast are more accurate?

Let's hear some feedback, folks.

Interior Mid-Atlantic Gathering-7Springs?
comprex
September 29, 2007
Member since 04/11/2003 🔗
1,326 posts
My choices:

1) BK because I have yet to ski there.

2) Timberline (and CV and Wg, that should ought get Pierre out).

3) 7Springs.

I don't think Rt or Whitetail will entice Phillyers. I might, however, just might consider Elk Mountain.


Hey, I'd quite look forward to this, especially as we didn't get to see ya at the last one of your parties.
kwillg6
October 1, 2007
Member since 01/18/2005 🔗
2,023 posts
Why not do one early and late season? I vote Wisp or BK early and definetly T-lines snowy luau weekend late. It's quite the party. Last year it snowed BIG time that weekend.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
October 1, 2007
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
BK has limited snowmaking so I wouldn't consider there until a normal January for machine coverage or a snowy cold December. BK is best with good natural coverage.

The T-line luau is its own event but if folks here want to invite Epic folks I think that would be great. My sense is that the two groups would be very compatible.

I'm up for a day or weekend at Blue Knob with an alternative in the event of a last minute melt down then I would suggest we all head to 7 Springs. I think I'd prefer T-line over Wisp but I still like to try the new terrain at Wisp.
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JimK - DCSki Columnist
October 2, 2007
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,700 posts

I'm tracking this thread with interest, just remaining neutral on dates/venue. Will say that IF conditions are halfway decent I will probably start my season by going to Wisp on Sunday, Dec 9 and would enjoy meeting with folks there. This is Wisp's annual Birthday Weekend event, believe lift tickets will be around $10.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
October 8, 2007
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
I proposed that we go to Blue Knob with 7 Springs as back up if coverage is poor. I think the weekend before or after Presidents Weekend would be best. I'm up for Wisp birthday DEC. 9 for an early season start.
bawalker
October 9, 2007
Member since 12/1/2003 🔗
1,547 posts
I've always done my best to make it to Wisp's birthday weekend. If a few want to have an impromptu meeting then, count me in.
comprex
November 17, 2007
Member since 04/11/2003 🔗
1,326 posts
Is this still on, folks?
JohnL
November 17, 2007
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,514 posts
Comprex, any talk of a gathering on Epic? (Haven't visited Epic in a long time.)

As Bawalker mentioned, Wisp's B-Day weekend is always a good early season event for catching up with a bunch of posters. Anyone know what weekend it is this year?

Hopefully I can finally make T-Line's Snowy Luau this year.
comprex
November 17, 2007
Member since 04/11/2003 🔗
1,326 posts
 Originally Posted By: JohnL
(Haven't visited Epic in a long time.)


Me either, I'm kinda counting on LHC to keep the ball rolling that end. From this thread it seems Dec. 9th is popular for the Wisp crowd?
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
November 17, 2007
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
December 9 for Wisp's birthday seems to be consensus for first get together. I can't commit but if conditions are promising, I'll be there.

The poll on Epic favors Blue Knob Feb. 23-24:

Blue Knob or Seven Springs?

I'm going to the Epic Gathering in Utah Feb. 1-4. My flight is booked.

A really nice looking Epic event is shaping up for Holiday Valley, NY Jan. 25-26. That's a Friday and Saturday.

JohnL
November 18, 2007
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,514 posts
 Quote:

The poll on Epic favors Blue Knob Feb. 23-24:


That's the weekend after President's Day Weekend. Good choice. I'll keep that weekend open. See also Blue Knob Ticket Special
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
December 17, 2007
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
Dates are February 23 and 24, 2008. Lodging options at Blue Knob can be found by click this link:

Lodging

Cheap tickets can be purchased by buying a six pack before 12/24/07. These tickets can be shared and used at any time during the season i.e. all tickets can be used on the same day by 6 different people or one person can use them any time during the season. Call 814-239-5111 to purchase the tickets. Information can be found by click on this link:

Blue Knob

See you all at Blue Knob.
__________________
Look into any eyes you find by you; you can see clear to another day. -R. Hunter
jimmy
January 23, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
Wonder who's making plans for this? Probably still some of those cheap tickets to be had if u no the rite pippl. not sure about both days but Saturday looks good for me.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
January 23, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
I'll be there for at least one day, probably Saturday. If conditions or attendance are real good, I'll be back Sunday too.
JohnL
January 25, 2008
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,514 posts
I'll be there 1 or 2 days depending upon what's up that weekend.

I'll gladly part with what's left of my Blue Knob discount ticket 6-pack on that weekend. Jimmy and JimK have first dibs.
Crush
January 25, 2008
Member since 03/21/2004 🔗
1,000 posts
 Originally Posted By: jimmy
Wonder who's making plans for this? Probably still some of those cheap tickets to be had if u no the rite pippl. not sure about both days but Saturday looks good for me.


yeah i'll b there
JohnL
February 7, 2008
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,514 posts
Bump.

Blue Knob Sat/Sun Feb 23/24.

Keep this one in mind. Anyone interested in hitting Snowshoe, Monday the 25th?
jimmy
February 7, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
SnowShoe Snow Safari i'll let u know. I'll be at the knob.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
February 12, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
OK, less than two weeks to go. Who's in? I'll start the list then copy and paste with your name added.

Laurel Hill Crazie and family
JohnL
JimK
Crush
jimmy
August West
treebarker
comprex??
telerod15???
kwillg6
February 13, 2008
Member since 01/18/2005 🔗
2,023 posts
Wherez it gonna be?
Never mind.... I just checked the earlier posts...BK.
I'll see if I can get the wife on board.
RodSmith
February 13, 2008
Member since 10/22/2004 🔗
318 posts
Laurel Hill Crazie and family
JohnL
JimK
Crush
jimmy
August West
treebarker
comprex??
RodSmith

I'm interested in sharing ride from DC area, and/or room Saturday night. I think Blue Knob has telemark rentals. Free lesson from a level 1 PSIA nordic downhill instructor (me) for anyone who wants to give it a try.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
February 16, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
There are a few, not sure how many, $32.50 tickets available. A friend of mine (treebarker) is interested in selling the rest of the cheap tickets he bought during Blue Knob's six pack sale. Please send me a private message if you're interested. He will be skiing on Saturday. He's not sure about Sunday at this time.
jimmy
February 19, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
I'll be there Saturday for sure, maybe Sunday depending......

I'm curious if anyone will have any bluish-green or greenish-blue skiers in their entourage??? Trying to decide how hard to twist Mrs. Jimmy's arm about going.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
February 19, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
If anybody from my brood comes out it'll be on Sunday. Though my wife has skied Extrovert and Stembogen she'll likely stay on the blues and greens with my son. I'll probably spend a lot of time with them too. If my daughter is on her board it'll be blue runs on skis she'll hack her way down anything, just like dad. August West over on Epic says he will not chase me down Extrovert anymore, he'll be there Sunday if he makes it. I won't be all day on Ex and Stem on Saturday so maybe we cam all spend some tome cruising that day too.

Meet around 9 am near the ticket window with a 10:30 late meet up at the top of the lifts.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
February 21, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
I hope somebody brings a camera and is willing to post photos here. I have no camera or I would volunteer.

It looks like attendance will be over a dozen folks over both days.

The weather is looking good so far:

BK Forecast
jimmy
February 26, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
Rob u got better than someone with a camera, check out the headlines on dcski, like making the cover of the rolling stone i tell yinz. Thank's again for making this happen i no u say its no big deal but someone's gotta do something to make a gathering like this happen. Really enjoyed skiing with your family, if someone told me i skied like a girl, i'd consider it a high compliment if it was your girls they were talking about!

Skiing with old friends + meeting new friends + a great hill for two days = . Hope this becomes an annual even, Da Knob ROCKS!
RodSmith
February 26, 2008
Member since 10/22/2004 🔗
318 posts
That was a lot of fun, good people, challenging terrain and conditions. This IS an annual event but has always been held at 7Springs in the past. I think it should at Laurel next year if they re-open. Otherwise my vote, when it comes time to cast it, will be for BK. It was sweet last weekend and less than half of the good stuff was skiable!
JimK - DCSki Columnist
February 26, 2008
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,700 posts
-Rod only brings his superb telemark A-Game to the black diamonds. For the groomers he breaks out his gondolier style mono-teleboarding, which you gotta see to believe (he's in the center of the photo with Mrs. LHC skiing Jack Rabbit on DCSki).
-Different set of Photos posted to EPIC: http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?p=866940#post866940
jimmy
February 26, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
JimK you really got a lot of super pictures, shame you're not in more of them. I'd love to see some pics or better yet a youtube of you doing those jump turns down the right side of Upper Xtrovert, only soft line on the slope and you nailed it!
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
February 26, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
We had fifteen people attend over two days with the hardcore doing both. From memory those that attended Saturday: jimmy, Johnnys Zoo, JohnL, Treebarker and son Josh and daughter Jessie, telerod15 and myself for a total of 8 that day.

Friday's hoped for snow event turned to freezing rain leaving a nice crust on several inches of new. The entire day remained rain free but we had some light fog early and heavy overcast all day. The snowmaking trails were in great shape so we started an easy warm up on Jack Rabbit, then to some of the other groomed cruisers, Expressway and Deer Run. Just when Rod was beginning to wonder if we were going to venture onto some challenge we meet up with JohnL and jimmy and proceeded to Stembogen. The bowl was rock hard bumps covered with crust and sno-cone. I managed to hack my way down the steepest section and watched as the rest of the crew ripped it good. Stembogen is what you would call a classic 'New England' ski trail. It twists through multiple switchbacks making every section run across the fall line before it switches and drops again. This is never groomed and bumps form helter skelter in amongst the snow making swells. It is real funky to ski. I'd like to think that maybe it's like Stowe's Nosedive before they eliminated several switchback.

About three quarters of the way down there is an entrance to a 'gladed' streambed call the Ditch. It's a natural half pipe that funnels down on the skiers right of Stembogen. Although all other glades where roped, this one happen to be open. We all lined up on trailside and debated the possibility, considered the crust, thin cover, the rocks and stumps we knew to be there, we decided not to go. Then telerod jumped in and the rest followed like lemmings. Rod did fine on his mismatched rock tele-skis. Johnnys Zoo and JohnL did the best from the fixed heel crowd and Treebarker managed a few nice turns before he found a rock that had core shot written on it. I think that Johnnys Zoo made some of the nicest turns in the thick crust. I never trusted myself so I bailed every other turn and ended up hopping like a demented kangaroo. We all laughed at ourselves for giving into such foolishness but hey, that's skiing in the Mid-Atlantic. We traversed out about half way down after having whetting our off piste craving. We're still starving around here. I can't remember when we had a good lasting snow pack.

Next we hit High Hopes, a trail that intersects Extrovert and runs under a chair lift so it is a man made fall line trail that's a little on the narrow side. The trail is groomed but the lift towers down the center makes for some interesting transitions. High Hopes starts out fairly easy and moderately pitch but as you approach the Extrovert intersection it begins to get a little steeper. People tend to pull up here to check both their speed and the conditions on Lower Ex. As a result by mid-day the hopes for easy carving get dashed by the icy tracks left by the groomer treads. It's sort of like skiing on cobble stones. We were early enough to get on High Hopes when the corduroy was still fresh but we did ski it icy later in the day.

After High Hopes we were ready for Extrovert. Extrovert is Blue Knob's signature expert run. EpicSki member Powdr calculated Ex to be 28.5 degrees, as steep as Killington's Outer Limits but is much narrower and about 750 feet of vertical. Ex has snow making from near ground level guns and is never groomed. The result is the snow piles up in huge whales near the guns, a little less so at the other side of the trail. Skiing Extrovert is always a challenge especially over the whales which begin to hold some skier made bumps but soon the contours surrender to the random drop from the snow guns. You can find a ten foot drop off the back of some of those bumps.

On this day I was thankful for the crust on slush, it provided a slow surface to the ice moguls. I can't remember who lead the charge, Marcus, JohnL or Johnny. All three had their moment and attacked the more challenging line. I looked for the more natural formed bumps on skier's right at the top. We all pulled up at the High Hopes intersection then dropped again on the lower section which starts steep at High Hope's edge then flattens somewhat but soon disappears over the last steep head wall. There was much expose dirt across that section and some snow melt that made the run out interesting to navigate. We all survived the experience, some with more élan then the rest; I was not among that group.

We spent some time watching the big air contest the resort sponsored that day. There were some awesome jumpers but I do believe the two plankers had the better air. I am biased though. The rest of the day we alternated between the groomed cruisers and the icy experts. Perhaps some of the others can fill in the details and fun stories from the rest of the runs that day. Treebarker's clan and I left early to make the 2+ hour trip home leaving the core crowd to close the slopes and head down to Bedford. JimK/Jamesj and son were headed up that night to ski the Knob on Sunday. I would be back with my clan too.

Sunday's weather was the opposite of the day before. Some snow fell overnight as the temperatures dropped into the teens. The skies were sunny, deep blue and temperatures rose to the mid-thirties throughout the day. Johnnys Zoo, Treebarker and family were absent but JimK and son along with August West and my brood were added to the crew. Later Mike C found the core group.

This was family ski day for me so I spent a lot of time on Mambo Alley and Jack Rabbit, the Knob's premier novice and intermediate trails respectively. Mambo lazily starts on the skier's right side of the mountain then twist and turns across the middle on its way to the left side. It rambles for about a mile if you ski down to the double chair. It has a good pitch to work your way from wedge to open parallel skills. My son loved burning down here looking for lips and dips to catch air. The entire gang followed us a few times then followed again as we move over to Jack Rabbit.

Old Extrovert regulars remember this trail as Bunny Hop. I guess that name implied the trail was tamer than it really is so now it's Jack Rabbit. This is a long intermediate cruiser that is pitched just right for those looking to step up to the next level and earn their blue square creds. Like Mambo, Jack Rabbit provides a lot of ski time, good for gaining confidence and new skills. By mid-day both trails held the best snow on the mountain, not too deep loose granular making for effortless turning. Jack Rabbit still served up some icy sections to keep you on your toes. Mambo was sweet all day long. The snow on those two never went potato mash and the experts trails never really softened.

I got my boy to ski the next trails up on the skill rotation, Expressway and Deer Run but the hard surfaces and steeper pitches took him out of his fun zone and away from scarves to more skids so we went back to the Rabbit and Mambo. My wife and daughter joined the rest of the crew for some upper level cruising. Soon the big boys went off to find their challenge. Rod and August West stayed with us a long time and took time to work on their skills.

After wife and son called it a day and West took his beer break Rod and I found the gang on Extrovert so I joined them for some final thrashing. There I meet Mike C and latter shared a chair with him. I never really got to watch JimK ski as he always seemed to be ahead of the crowd snapping photos. I got a chance to see him ski Extrovert in fine form. As for his son, I found him at the bottom waiting for the old dudes to catch up. At the top of the next chair my daughter came out of the lodge to join us for my final run. We all headed to the top of Extrovert but our destination was Edgeset, a natural snow trail that falls back toward Stembogen. The snow was nice but there were a few bare spots. The bumps on skiers left were soft and evenly formed. It was a nice way to end my day and share a little challenge with my first born.

The great thing about skiing with this group was the generous nature of the participants. By this I mean all were encouraging and appreciative of each others skiing. Both days we wore huge smiles all day long. All you folks that stayed away because of weather concerns well, you missed out on a fine time. We had challenge even though most of the natural snow terrain was closed plus family time presented plenty of opportunity for blue square cruising. Yinz all come out next year, yinz hear! With some luck, we'll gather at Laurel. Wildcat is only 28.1 degrees steep but the camaraderie will make up for that missing .4 degrees.
JimK - DCSki Columnist
February 27, 2008
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,700 posts
LHC, very nice recap. Savvy descriptions of terrain, conditions, personalities. Putting it down on paper has a way of cementing memories like those you made on Sunday with your beautiful family. There's something really healthy about showing kids that in this world full of jobs/school/stress that Crazies can keep their sanity with good, clean fun on a ski hill in February.
RodSmith
February 27, 2008
Member since 10/22/2004 🔗
318 posts
 Originally Posted By: JimK
LHC, very nice recap. Savvy descriptions of terrain, conditions, personalities. Putting it down on paper has a way of cementing memories like those you made on Sunday with your beautiful family. There's something really healthy about showing kids that in this world full of jobs/school/stress that Crazies can keep their sanity with good, clean fun on a ski hill in February.


Sorta beautiful sentiments there, JK. I agree that Rob's trip report was right on except where he says he is a hack skier. I saw him lose his rhythm and traverse across Extrovert, but I never saw him fall down. I crashed at least a dozen times this weekend. Rob, although we have very different styles of skiing, I think we are very similar in skill level. Maybe we are "hacks", but I prefer "advanced recreational". OK?
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter
February 27, 2008
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,838 posts
Thanks for the kind words guys, both here and over on Epic. I said it at the close on Sunday and it came out a little corny but really I just post the thread and help out with the consensus for location. You guys and all the attendees make the event. So many years on these PA hills gets to be a little too familiar. Meeting up with new folks to ski really rejuvenates my interest. It's the silliness like our venture into the Ditch despite our better judgment or matching lines down Extrovert that I'll always remember, it allows me to be a kid again, not just experience it vicariously through my kids.

I do enjoy sharing my love of this sport with the family though at times it seems an enormous hassle and sacrifice. When my daughter was a tot and riding on my back she would break out in song as I cruised the blues. To hear her years later sing as she skis is priceless just as watching my boy bee line to a spot to catch a little air. Jim, I'm sure you know what I mean.

As for my ski skills Rod, well advanced recreational is a good description. I know I'm not an expert. There are too many conditions that reveal my deficient skill applications to deceive myself but I'm ok with that. I'll alway be improving in spite getting older. Let's also describe ourselves as 'emerging experts'.
jimmy
February 27, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
Ya rod ur right i'd follow rob anywhere......."hey jimmy u goin orwut?" "look over here".....THIS THREAD IS USELESS WITHOUT PICTURES...sorry to shout....speaking of pictures i think jimk must've deeleted the pictures of me on the ground i still had snow up my coat on Monday, anyways this was a group that pushed, we all made way more good turns than oops and BK what a hill i can't wait to leave ptex with you all again....THIS THREAD IS USELESS WITHOUT PICTURES, sorry to shout...... Johnnys Zoo, JohnL have fun at tline this weekend, i'm headin for snowshoe......anyone else skiing this weekend?
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