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Mind Boggling Ski Conditions in Whistler


I had the pleasure of skiing 37 cm (14 inches) of fluffy, fresh powder yesterday. A few things become crystal clear on a day like that.

The first thing is that our mountains are huge! The ski patrol has an incredibly difficult job to balance between the salivating powder hound's need and taking care of the safety for the public on the mountain through proper avalanche control. Moral of the story; don't duck ropes to get into an area that is not open due to avalanche control. If you do this you slow down the whole process for everyone!

The next thing. With 37 fresh cm if you go fast enough you can generate face shots from even the fattest of skis. I'm starting to get a little tired of hearing that people prefer to ski on skinny skis so they can sink into the snow. Speed = faceshots no matter how fat your skis are. If you're just learning how to ski powder remember that speed in moderation is your friend. Make sure to go straight for a bit, start to bounce and then increase your turn radius as required. The deeper the snow, the less you may need to turn.

Finally, tree skiing is great! When the wind is howling, snow is blowing sideways, you can`t see or hear your buddy next to you duck into some trees and you`ll find yourself in a nice little oasis. Take a quick breather, plot your line and then go for it! Make sure to look ahead for quick drops or areas with no trees. This will mean one thing - CLIFF. Depending on the size of the drop(s) you may be on top of a `pillow field` or an actual death inducing cliff. Proceed with care!

Blackcomb Mountain provided an amazing time yesterday and the staff did an stand-up job opening as much terrain as possible. With more snow in the forecast it promises to be a fantastic spring in Whistler.

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