Thursday, December 27, 2012

Sunshine and Powder

Mother Nature gave Mt. Hood an early present.  She dumped five feet of snow during the week before Christmas.  Let the skiers rejoice!

Size matters!  Click on any photo to enjoy a larger version.

A clean, white canvas of new snow

Christmas Eve day, I headed to the mountain to partake in the snowy goodness.  I hit the lift right at its 9 am opening.  The beautiful new, untracked snow spread out below me.  It looked like a blank artist's canvas, ready for his paintbrush.

Untracked pow in Two Bowl

Finally released from the lift, I noticed everyone was swarming to the bowls, vying for first tracks.  Originally planning to take an easy first run, I scuttled those plans and headed straight for Two Bowl.  There were already a few scars marring Two Bowl's perfect powdery slope.  But upon dropping in, I discovered a large untouched section.  It was pure fluffy bliss, all the way to the bottom.  What a great way to start the day!

Blue sky makes an appearance

The blue sky broke out of the clouds and lit up the new-fallen snow.  It seemed as though the heavens had descended upon Mt. Hood Meadows.

Virgin snow ready for the tracking

I stuck to the Express lift, while a good portion of the snow-riders headed elsewhere in search of fresh tracks.  With most of the people absent, I had entire runs to myself.  More pow for me!

Wintry scene

Due to high winds, the upper Cascade Lift wasn't open.  The untracked snow from its slopes, rippled by the wind, made quite a stunning photo op. 

Ripples in the new snow

Kind of like waves in a big white ocean.

Heather Canyon is open!

Mid-day, I headed over to the Shooting Star Lift.  I got into line just in time to hear that the ski patrol was opening Heather Canyon.  After riding to the top, I naturally headed over that way to check it out.  I found a crowd of people on top of Twilight Bowl, all preparing to make some tracks.  Wanting to avoid the crowds, I skied down to the gates for Moon Bowl.  It was deserted, save for a small group of snowboarders sitting near the top.

Mt. Hood anchors Heather Canyon

The snow, although slightly wind-packed looked amazing.  After a couple shots from my camera, I quickly dropped in.  The snow was everything I'd hoped for - light, fluffy and deep.  One of the snowboarders above me cried "cowabunga!" and plunged into the snowy slope. He zipped by me in a cloud of white.  His buddies followed, whooping and hollering as they sped downhill.  I floated along in the pillow soft powder.  It was hands-down the best run of the day.

Looking down into Moon Bowl

Riding the lift back up, my chair-mates and I spotted Santa skiing down the slope below us.  We all had a good laugh, and one of the guys commented "Shouldn't he be getting ready for his big night?"

Frosty white trees

My Christmas present came early this year.  Sunshine and fresh powder - ski days don't get any better than this!

Linking to:  52 Photos Project and This or That Thursday.


  1. Makes me want to try skiing again. No not really but beautiful cool having it mostly to yourself too we are going snowshoeing again this weekend wahooo

  2. How amazing! Scottish ski resorts would love this amount of snow. Husband and daughter are heading to Austria shortly to be sure of snow. And you have blue skies to go with your snow - seems like perfection.

  3. Oh my goodness, Linda. I am almost speechless. I've been a lot of places and done a lot of things in my lifetime, but I've never personally SEEN five feet of snow. Thanks so much for these pictures and your post. I've enlarged every single one of the pics. Gorgeous! Do any of the trails you hike in the summertime become impassable through the winter?

  4. I am soooo jealous! Looks like a perfect ski day!

  5. wow ... that was one beautiful day! best wishes to you in the New Year.


    Gorgeous! I am so happy I found your blog this year - I really enjoy hearing about your Oregon adventures!

  7. Nothing more beautiful in winter than a gorgeous blue sky against freshly fallen white snow...
    totally amazing!
    Wishing you many more days of mountain fun:)

  8. Winter wonderland! Just beautiful!

  9. So beautiful! I wish some of that snow would make its way to Chicago.

  10. Wish I could spend some days there with the camera! That snow on the trees looks fantastic. Actually, as we've had some boiling hot summer weather here, your photos are a nice change!

  11. How wonderful! The photos are absolutely breathtaking ....fancy being able to take those and ski! You must live in the most slaughter after place! I'm so glad that you had such an excellent day. Joan

  12. Such beautiful images, wishing you a happy new year!

  13. Beautiful, a winter wonderland!
    Happy new year :)

  14. Can you believe I've never gone skiing?!
    These photos are amazing. I'm so glad you had a great day of it.
    Happy New Year!


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