What a long season. Eight months ago today the first true accumulating inches of the season fell around Tahoe. Since then the season of 2010-2011 hasn’t stopped, dropping almost 800″ inches on Squaw with snow in the forecast predicting more than a foot at high elevations by Monday night. Pretty crazy, but you can’t mess with Mother Nature, so check out a few flashback shots from our first powder day of the season last October 6th, 2010 and get ready for your next one on June 6, 2010.
Stoked we were at least in for a few turns we headed up to the saddle that separates Freel and Jobe’s Sister. That was when the realization set in that it was indeed October 6th and even if the descent was going to be gone in the morning, for now we had a thousand feet of smooth fresh north facing snow to shred. Dropping in towards the Lake in the North bowl I couldn’t help but milk a few before tentatively opening it up. Knowing there was nothing up here just a few days earlier we had to ski somewhat cautiously, but in reality we only scraped a few rocks on the south side during our exit. The North bowl skied amazingly well, I never hit bottom, and it was some of the best early season turns I’ve ever scored in the Basin.
We skinned back up reluctant to not just lap it, but work time was coming soon for both of us, and we still had 2200’ to go before the car. I figured the south side was not going to ski all that well, but I was dead wrong for at least 1500’ of mellow tree terrain that skied like the middle of December. Honestly, we were amazed at how good it skied, but were quickly brought back to the time of year it was as the sudden shift around 8500’ was dramatic. The snow turned to muck and the rocks and bushwhacking identified again that it was early October and we might not be able to get this even 24 hours later.
Nonetheless it was a trip to ski and skin through aspen trees that were green and have yet to turn yellow. It was trip to ski Freel, which is Tahoe’s tallest peak at 10,881’, but is also such a long winter slog it keeps most users away. It was also a trip to get good skiing on north and south aspects so early in the season, especially in that nowhere else around the Lake is holding something worth slapping the sticks on for. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow morning, and I’m still thinking we’ll back into climbing/biking mode by the weekend, but when the weather shifts and gives you a few days of backcountry skiing, better go for a walk and leave a few tracks while you can.
I guess the same goes 8 months to the day later when it’s still dumping, only it’s June. Might as well have some fun though, right? So who’s skiing tomorrow? I’m about to leave the coast right now and I’m getting FIRED UP!