Monday, November 26, 2012

White Friday 2012

First, to my readers from the United States, I hope you had a pleasant Thanksgiving full of your favorite delights.  I enjoyed family, food and football.  Watching the Lions finally win and the Cowboys lose to the Redskins were especially enjoyable.  I regret, however, that I was unable to get the bus operational in time for White Friday.  Again, the battery has inexplicably drained, and my charger is back in the storage facility.  I'll need to charge or jump the bus back to life and then drive around a bit before taking the journey to Mt. Hood.  I did celebrate White Friday at Timberline as planned, though, and I'm going to focus on that instead :)

Rain? What Rain?
Mt Hood Hwy
Starting on Monday, we watched the weather forecasts and snow reports.  Every one of them had some form of drizzle in the plan for White Friday.  I thought for sure that we would have a grey one instead.  All reports had the rain starting around noon, so Boo and I got ourselves out of the house early.  Well, it was early for us on a weekend day- 9:30AM.  Driving Flash with gusto, we got to Timberline before 11.  When you arrive at Timberline, you pass the overflow lot first.  This is usually your early signal of how busy the resort is.  Last year, for example, the overflow lot was almost completely full, and the runs were too.  This year, however, there were less than 2 rows of cars in the overflow.  Once you round the corner from the overflow lot, the main lot is visible on your left.  The main lot was less than half full.  Apparently, everyone else heard the rain threats and gave up on the snow.  Sucka's.

... and then there was sliding
mid-run under the Molly's lift.
Mt. Jefferson deep in the background
The upper mountain (Magic Mile and Palmer) was closed due to lack of visibility.  The clouds were low, but the wind was too.  Most of the lower mountain (Bruno's, Pucci, Molly's, Stormin' Norman, Jeff Flood) was open, though, with just Jeff Flood closed because it is the lowest of them all, and those runs were too soft.  Early season brings a funny split crowd.  There are a group of snow junkies who are quite good and a group of brand-new-to-the-sport folks.  On Friday, the junkies mostly went over to Stormin' Norman for the grind rails and jumps and the newbies stayed mostly on the beginner slope Bruno's.  This left the Pucci and Molly's runs lightly populated, leaving Boo and me some open terrain for fun.  The queue for the lifts were maybe as long as 5 chairs long at the peak with some runs ending with no line at all.  The snow was relatively well-tread, but there was an inch of puff on top and plenty of fluffy off the main trails.  We bounced through un-groomed moguls near the top of Pucci, raced down the Thunder bowl and carved Vicky's Run before stopping to meet my brother E and his daughters K&K for lunch.  E, K&K don't slide, but they love the snow.  They drove up just to visit the white stuff, make snow forts and sled.  After a brief visit, they headed for the out-of-bounds and Boo and I went back to carving.  After 9 or 10 runs, we called it a day.  No rain.  It was actually quite nice.

That's it for today.  I hope you all found a way to celebrate White Friday.


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