It’s the return of Juneuary. Only this time it’s June and the skiing feels more like January. Today was unreal. The snow quality was full-on mid-winter conditions and it’s just mind blowing that such worthy snow can be skied this late in the season in sunny California….and that our spring that never was, or season that keeps on giving (which ever title your prefer) continues.
My plans to hit Tioga Pass Thursday disintegrated at the last minute. Luckily I connected with my buddy Court and his friend Chris. We called an audible, and ended up skiing amazing laps of powder at a ski resort that’s close to 800” for the season and closed.
No, it wasn’t Squaw. We made the call to skin and ski at Kirkwood as there were several inches of new on the ground and they’re cool with hikers. Every lap we skied was excellent. Snow hit us in the face. Some milking turns were made and some fast straight-lines with air were pointed.
Initially bummed to have missed what looked to be a potentially epic day on the Eastside, today just became one of the best days I’ve ever had in June. Cold snow, no people, and it actually snowed an extra inch or so while we were out.
As you look through these pictures imagine if we were actually allowed to skin and ski at Squaw right now. I mean, in this day and age in the ski industry, with KSL pulling some rad moves like opening new terrain this year, and listening to the people’s voices when we chastised them for trying to close Silverado early this season, how hard would it be to get them to allow hikers to ski the mountain when lifts aren’t in operation?
Ever ski at Big Sky and sign the waiver to ski the Big Couloir? Maybe you’ve skied in Las Lenas and signed out to ski the rowdy terrain known as Eduardos? We all know it’s somewhat the private thing, as opposed to Squaw leasing land from the USFS like Alpine, Sugar Bowl, Kirkwood, and many other ski areas do, but seriously, what if we could go skin up Mountain Run tomorrow, lap Silverado (or wherever else) for the day, and head home whenever we were satiated? Is that really too much to ask?
Alpine has been really fun to hike recently, and after today’s session at Kirkwood it’s clear that not tracking up the untouched primo powder at Squaw right now is a complete waste. You know we can do it, but the threat of being hassled and hiding from anyone you see while doing it takes away from the experience. It’s ridiculous, and to ski today with two Kirkwood shreders as stoked as could be to hike their hill without the lifts turning really got my mental wheels burning. Hey KSL, wanna do something really sick to make the locals happy? Let us hike! Especially on a year like this, especially when the snow keeps coming, and especially since it’s so good right now.
In the meantime here are a few more shots from Thursday’s session that I think was one of the better last minute calls I made all season. Even though we got face shots and it was stormy and snowing on us for most of the day, I still can’t believe it, because it’s June and skiing today looked and felt like it was January. Most of the photos in this post were taken by Court. I added a few. You can see more of Court and Chris tearing up Kirkwood and beyond at www.powdork.com.