Thursday, March 27, 2014

(Almost) Spring Skiing

The calendar read March 7th.  Spring was still two full weeks away.

But don't tell that to Mt. Hood......

Sunny day!  Yahoo!

My ski-buddy Kim and I both had Friday off, and the weatherman predicted a warm, sunny day.  Time for a visit to the Hood to partake in some spring skiing! (even though it wasn't quite spring yet).

Ready for our first run

Although a week of constant mid-February snowstorms revived our skimpy snowpack, the weather this season has been more spring- than winter-like.  Another blogger complained that "PNW" (Pacific Northwest) stood for "Pacific No Winter."  But those who prefer their ski days sunny and warm were happy campers.

Cool cloud bank hovers over the valley

Kim and I certainly were smiling.  How can you not when the first ride up brings you views like these?

Looking into Heather Canyon

Due to the low snow, Heather Canyon, Mt. Hood Meadows' Expert area, had been off-limits most of the season.  But the fabulous February refill covered its slopes enough that the ropes were finally dropped.  Kim saw me staring longingly into the canyon and told me to go ahead and take a run (she doesn't do double blacks).  She promised to meet me at the bottom of Shooting Star lift.

Bottom of Heather Canyon

So I happily swished down the slope between Twilight and Moon Bowls.  Although a little icy on top, my ski edges soon found some soft fluff to bite into.  Although the slopes were pretty bumped up, I still had a fun ride down.  Upon hitting the bottom, I stopped to take in the beauty of this stark, snow-covered landscape.  Sitting in the bottom of a massive canyon makes you realize you're merely a speck in this great big ole world.

Riding the  lift out of Heather Canyon

Then it was a quick slide to the lift, and a fun ride up the steep canyon wall.

Approaching the Shooting Star Lift

And during the trip, plenty of photo ops.

Different perspective of the lift line

Passing over the Shooting Star chair gives one a different perspective of lift lines.

Kim waving to me from below

And a wave from Kim, waiting below.

Dramatic views from top of Cascade Lift

Post-lunch, the sun was out in full force.  My friend and I traveled to Cascade Chairlift, the highest place in the ski area.  Fantastic views could be found from every direction.

Gotta be careful!  (photo by Kim)

But lookout for the hazards!  Kim snapped this funny photo with her phone, and was nice enough to share.

Kim tryin' out some demo skis

The  intense solar energy worked it's magic on the snow, and by afternoon, it was lovely soft corn.  An absolute joy to ski through!  Crowds (what little there were) had tapered off, so lines were non-existent.  Kim and I made lap after lap, until our legs were crying for mercy.

Mountain and forest views

These ungroomed wind-blown drifts were probably my favorite run of the day.  It was big fun to slide up and down these small (and large) bumps.  I even caught a tiny bit of air!  (tee-hee!)

Hood is lookin' good

Ahhh..... blue skies, soft snow, no crowds, endless solar energy.  Who doesn't love spring skiing?  (Especially when it arrives early!)

Sharing with:  Weekly Top Shot.


  1. So nice of you to share you day on the mountain. That last photo of Hood with some cloud just above it looks so pretty. Glad you had a good time and came home safe and not too weary or bruised! Take care!

  2. It's obvious you had a wonderful day!

  3. You can tell that you love it. Should I be concerned about you when Summer hits? What do you do when you can't snow ski? I love your adventurous life!

  4. Magnificent!.. You really make us feel we're right there with you.
    I love your exuberant joy!

  5. Hi,Linda. Nice captures. It looks that heavy snow falls in February would bring nice season in March. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Looks fabulous! Too bad we couldn't ship you some of our winter; we've got extra!

  7. Such beautiful viwes Linda! I guess ski season may soon over.

  8. Looks like you have the place pretty much to yourselves! What a treat!

  9. Wow, I just love the gorgeous mountain scenery! Mt Hood is beautiful. Awesome shots, Glad you had a great time skiing.. Have a happy weekend!

  10. So pretty. We are very lucky, aren't we! Love the 3rd shot, with the valley below. Gorgeous, and I love that perspective!

  11. That 3rd photo down is stunning - it looks like a straight drop off!

  12. Lots and Lots of white here. I'm sure for ski lovers it's pure heaven. I loved Photo #3 and also the one of Heather Canyon.

  13. I agree with Kim, that third photo was incredible! And if a photo can give vertigo, that did! I zoomed in at the photo and then sat back like I might all off the edge. The clouds below you are amazing. Looks like a fun day!

    PS, need some snow?

  14. Looks like a wonderful time. Love all the photos!

  15. What an amazingly beautiful place to ski on a lovely day.

  16. Looks good - I dot ski, but I could be tempted by days like this!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  17. Enjoying your sun second-hand, since we don't have any here just now!


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