I have two images and a short story to share.
Last week I returned from the Montana “Swanvoyage” vacation and got back to business. I have a new schedule at work now, my employer granted me Fridays off to work on Dresm. This new schedule proved itself quite valuable this past Friday. The weather shifted cold mid-week and the rain on Mt.Hood turned to snow. The snow levels continued to drop all the way down to Welches (that’s real good and low). By Friday the snow was tampering off and over two feet of unseasonable light snow blanketed Meadows. For the first time of the season, day 35 of riding for me, I rode solo. A personal Friday, focusing on my turns; one line of sight.
I’ve been trying to link turns more, stop less and ride faster this season. Each time I get to the bottom of a run where the focus was flow, I get a feeling of satisfaction. The unexpectedness of what these runs can hold is where the rush lives. Catching a roller or dropout mid run that you’ve never seen, combines the challenge and air time I’m after.
These two images where captured by a Mt.Hood Meadows photographer service. I was riding a top to bottom run on Privet Reserve. At the rope line gate below the chair, I dropped with the fall line. Bouncing through the thick, mellow tree terrain, popping off any roller in my path. The trees fade into a steep bowl in this line. I opened it up and headed for a clump of trees, holding composure through chop. These photos were taken without me knowing. There was a photographer with a big zoom lens snapping shots of skiers coming into the bowl. I noticed him as I was nearing the bottom, ripping through chopped up powder, hanging on to my speed, hoping not to cartwheel.
I checked the Meadows website the next morning and bought these two photos of myself. They are my perfect reminder of what a top to bottom solo powder run feels like. Pure drive and focus. Some runs work and other leave you digging snow out of your ears or back-tracking after being cliffed-out. This particular run was as uninterrupted as my morning coffee.
The snow stayed light and deep through mid-day. My knee injury from the Cooke City trip started to act up by noon though, and I was forced to quite early. It was a successful March powder day that left me smiling, two runs down Fright Trees and five laps on Private Reserve.