I've visited Crested Butte a few times now, and it never ceases to provide fun steep skiing, good people, and a cool mountain town scene. I usually roll out of town with a mild hangover, a few core shots, and a smile on my face, with a huge appreciation for a totally different style of skiing that is, for me, both challenging and humbling.
Last Wednesday, after 15 hours in Matt's truck, with Arne and Nik, we arrived to a super comfortable slopeside condo, and took some time to unwind with the other Blasters.
On Thursday, Matt and Tyler got out there on "Sock It To Me" and crushed it, both qualifying, no sweat, for Day 1. I spent the day getting my legs underneath me, skiing steeps with endless obstacles, and visually inspecting the Day 1 venue, "The Staircase".
We arrived in CB to about a 30 inch base… not ideal for a competition. But atleast then, you could see all the rocks, etc. It started snowing on Friday, and with a thin blanket of fluffy snow, each turn was a crap shoot. The good news is, it dumped! They received over 2 feet; pretty epic by Colorado's standards. And although it was not bottomless (no Sierra Cement here folks), it made for a couple days of sweet pow skiing. Locals were claiming "best day of the year" both Saturday and then Sunday again.
My competition run on Day 1 was not very impressive. My plan was to ski a more technical line in order to increase my line score. That was a success, but in doing that however, I neglected to ski fast or fluidly, thus getting crappy scores in most other categories. I got hung up in a few places, which is all too easy in CB. I placed 18th, not enough to make the cutoff to ski on Day 2. Pressure was off, but a huge bummer…
I tagged along with John Lange's girlfriend Stacia for a day of pow skiing on Saturday. A former CB local, Stacia knew the mountain like the back of her hand, and it was nice to just follow her and find untracked stashes over and over again
The final day of competition on Sunday was super entertaining as usual. The skiing was impressive, and people were going for it, especially after the score sheet was wiped clean for the men after Day 1. Blaster Scotty Hanichen, third competitor to run, sent it huge and unfortunately ate it off of the Hamburger rock… Arne skied well, but it was Matt who came out on top for the Squaw crew, finishing 7th, and looking like he had a lot of fun doing it. Nice work Matt, always exciting to watch you ski!
We heard Tahoe was due for snow so we wasted no time getting in the car Monday morning. If you overlook running out of gas 1 mile from Wendover, Nik eating a completely raw chicken finger from a gas station in central NV, and the Lady GaGa soundtrack on repeat, the drive went smoothly.
Crested Butte is always a good time, and they really have the logistics of that competition dialed! I'm looking forward to heading back next year.