Hey SkiBum, were you patrolling Saturday afternoon/night? I made it up there for the second time on Saturday. My family goes every Easter and they've only been open twice since I took up boarding. Diamond Jim was in GREAT shape Saturday afternoon. I was really enjoying the heavy snow. Its really fun to carve in. I was out for about 3 hours in the afternoon hitting Diamond Jim, then practicing my switch riding down Southern Comfort. Its nice and humbling to glide down a black diamond effortlessly and then fall 5 times on a green slope.
I came back again from 9-10 after swimming and the conditions had firmed up a lot. It was still a blast though finding a good line and the right places to dig in for your turns through the re-frozen slush buildup from the afternoon.
I was only on Sunday morning until around 1 o'clock, then had to leave to visit the parents for Easter. But, yeah, the snow was really good all weekend and Diamond Jim has a really nice base. I was in the Waterpark on Saturday - that flowrider they got there is has got to be the coolest thing that I've ever seen! That thing is such a blast - cannot friggan wait until they get that Kalahari resort built here in Fredericksburg, than I'll have one not even 2 miles from my place!
One question, what is the reason for not being able to strap in on the lift. I was doing this all day not knowing it was against the rules. It was really easy to do with the ski rests on the Diamond Jim Quad. About 9:15 or so I got off the lift and the lifty yelled at me not to do that again. Are they afraid you'll fall off the lift trying to strap in? Personally I feel safer doing that with the restraining bar down than getting off the lift with one leg unstrapped. That's the quickest way to mess up your knee on a board. Anyway, just curious.
I honestly don't know. My guess is that they are indeed afraid that someone could fall off the lift why trying to strap in. You, being an experience boarder may know how to properly strap in while riding up the lift, but Joe Public First-Timer on the chair behind you may not, but he sees you and thinks "Cool, I should try that" he goes and tries and ends up falling off. Oh believe me, there is a lot of "monkey see, monkey do" that goes on at these places - somebody sees something that looks cool, they go and try the same thing and ended up biffing it hard. It sucks, but that is reality and something we have to take into account when seeing what could be a potentially unsafe act.
I think Mass did a GREAT job of putting down a great base and keeping everything in shape given the weather this year and the rains we've gotten in the past week or so. Thumbs up!
Yeah, I've always been impressed with how good they tend to keep snow at Massanutten. They do have an excellent snowmaking/snowgrooming crew there that definitely takes pride in their work. These guys are the unsung heroes, having to work out there late at night, typically in some pretty cold, unforgiving weather, after all the rest of us are back home in our cozy beds, working to give us a surface that we can carve up that next morning! In fact, that is one of the reasons why Paradise, Mass Transit and Yee-Ha was never opened - they've been concentrating on getting a good base on what has been managed to get opened, and the weather just never cooperated enough to get a good enough base on those last three trails.
BTW, Massanutten will be opened until Tuesday - shame I have to go back to my regular day job otherwise, I may have stuck around to get those last few turns in.
Part of me tempted to cruise up to T-line or something that may still be opened, but don't know if that will work out. I guess I am pretty much done for the season.