|Trudging up towards pristine powder at the back|
of Lake Louise
I wish I was skiing in Canada right now! They've had so much snow since I left, I feel jealous of all those January skiers reveling in the great conditions and lack of lift-lines. I know exactly what it must be like - after all I lived there for 10 years, skiing every weekend of the five-month season, while writing the Snow Scene columns for the Calgary Sun before I moved on to working for the Calgary Herald, Ski Canada Magazine, Dallas Morning News etc.
|Euan (right) with his Mum in Lodge of the Ten Peaks|
|Euan jumping for joy at Lake Louise (by Cameron Sadler)|
Having squeezed him in, he actually lapped us on Mine Shaft, doing 3 descents to our 2, but you have to bear in mind it is a considerable uphill hike and skate to get across the ridge to the drop-in point and we ladies all have 30 years on him.
|First Tracks off the backside of Lake Louise|
Now I think of it, I was also lucky enough to get two back-to-back powder days at Fernie. The first, it snowed all day, massive flakes filling in our tracks quicker than we could make them and we skied and skied until last lift in hedonistic heaven. The second was a clear, bluebird day and I was fortunate to have great guides to introduce me to untouched hidden stashes in the Surprise, Puff and Cougar Glades, easily reached by a bit of canny traversing.
Although I didn't get any fresh falls while at Castle Mountain earlier in Dec, I was totally impressed with the wind-sifted powder still hanging on in the glades. Visibility and wind stopped me from skiing some of the higher runs but it led me to research the lower areas. And I loved the light, fluffy pow, lingering in the Ghost Rider Glades off the Huckleberry Chair, where savvy summer pruning has created really fluent tree skiing.
Having a couple of trips planned to US resorts this season, I've been looking at their snowfall, too, and I noticed that Colorado has been getting good snow lately - for example a mighty 91cm/36in at Breckenridge, 71cm/28in at Copper Mountain, 66cm/26in at Vail and 35cm/14in at Beaver Creek in the past week. You can see the latest 24 and 48 hour details for all the Colorado ski hills at: http://www.coloradoski.com/snow-report . And there's fresh forecast for next weekend for Utah, where I'm headed for a week's ski safari in Feb, touring Snowbasin, Alta, Sundance and Canyons. Can't wait!
This week's enviable snowfall stats include:
|Lake Louise Inn: cute, comfortable, cosy |
and closest to the slopes
Lake Louise - 75 cm
Sunshine Village - 81 cm
Mt Norquay - 27 cm
Nakiska - 35 cm
Castle Mountain - 35 cm
Marmot Basin (9 days) - 55 cm
Kicking Horse - 60 cm
Fernie - 43 cm
Big White - 41 cm
Revelstoke - 44 cm
Whistler Blackcomb - 70 cm
Whitewater - 51 cm
Red Mountain - 16 cm
Silver Star - 16 cm
Sun Peaks - 10 cm
More Stills of Euan, taken by Cameron Sadler: