February 26, 2009
There was a dusting last night but it hasn't snowed for real for ~ 10 days. It was 55 at the base yesterday PM. Most of the other days this week were close to that warm in the afternoon. Last night it rained a bit in town. Lightning closed the hot springs and a funnel cloud was sighted. The lower mountain was slush at yesterday's closing. This morning it was pretty crusty. Sounds bad, right?
The chutes are still choked with dry powder. It is easy to get untracked lines. They are in deep shaded pine forest and are never worked by sun or wind. It takes 2 lift rides to get there or return and for some, a little hiking; almost nobody goes there. After they mellow out you get a half mile or so of gorgeous low angle powder, just aim & go through the trees. Steamboat is full of Texans who ski one week on their annual vacation. The mountain does not publicize the chutes. They are as steep as anything at say Taos, for 300 vertical feet or so, which is about as much super steep as you get at Taos. Other areas up high in the pine forest are almost as good, Morningside, Bar U E woods, and the upper half of Closet. The trick is to stay away from the aspens unless it dumped overnight. The snow there gets sun baked.
We're having a good time. Final day tomorrow, then on to Alta.