Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Yeti Thirteeen: Snowbird

Our Saturdays are now full with soccer training for Joel and soccer games for Will so we decided to take advantage of Spring Break for a little spring skiing. Since I teach on M-W-F, Tuesday and Thursday became our designated days.

Breezy and in the 50s is what the weather forecasts said. Very windy, cloudy and cold enough for the frozen, hard packed, icy snow to never soften would be a more accurate description--at least for Snowbird. It was sunny in the valleys all day.

The kids and I all skied Snowbird (for their first time) back in April 2012. It was a much more enjoyable day--marred only by the dying of our car on the way home. See photos and story here: http://beitemmett.blogspot.com/2012/04/last-days-of-skiing-and-subaru.html

April 9, 2012

At Bob's recommendation we parked at the top of Chickadee lift (the beginner lift) and then skied down to the base of the tram to get our passes.

Brother Bob catching up on some business.

I'll take one of those--we are in need of a new car for Marie so Joel can inherit the 2000 van this fall when he gets his license.

When we first got out of the car we noticed that it was indeed breezy. Our first indication that it was really windy on top came when they held up the tram while heavy barrels were loaded on to add stability in the high winds. We forged onward and upward. 

From the top of the brand new Summit Lodge atop Hidden Peak (11,000 feet)

 Looking east to Alta. Looks are deceptive. It is cold, windy and icy.

Standing tall at 11,050 feet.

E-mail and water stop. 

We headed to Mineral Basin hoping to get out of the wind and hoping that brief appearances of the sun had softened the snow. Silver Dipper was challenging, We could handle the steep, but the hard, icy, windy conditions made it a challenge.

 Mineral Basin Lift and Summit Lodge

When we got to the base we found out that Baldy lift had just closed because of the winds and Mineral Basin would close as soon as all the skiers could move on to the other side. 

We descended the mountain via the Road to Provo, Goblin Gully, Bassakwards and Big Emma.

Coming down Big Emma this time of year is usually akin to wadding through slush. Today the cold front froze that slush solid and the sun did not appear to soften it. This section was more like ice skating.

 Thanks for the photos Bob.

By now the heavy edging had aggravated Sarah's jogging injured arch and Will's pulled knee and ingrown toe nail so they opted to go sit it out in the Creekside Lodge. Bob opted to head home. Joel and I opted to give it one more try on Gad Zoom. I was certainly up for more, but everyone else was good to go.

Joel joined his siblings in the lodge for some grub, while I traversed over to the tram base and up Chikadee to the car to then go and pick up the kids. By noon we were on the road. 

Luckily this time driving home down steep Little Cottonwood Canyon our new Subaru did not throw a belt and need to be towed.

 John, Chad, Bob and Bill Emmett (l to r)

Once upon a time I skied with two brothers and a nephew at Snowbird on the Fourth of July. I also skied at Snowbird with brothers on Memorial Day 1997 as a sort of bachelor party before marrying Marie the next day. Happy Memories. In hindsight, today's bust of a ski day will one day become a happy, or perhaps amusing, or at least memorable memory. 

Two years ago I had a great spring powder day at Snowbird with Bob.

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