5 December 2016 — Busy early season weekend, place to be right now is Mt. Bachelor, with a foot of fresh snow this weekend seen n the photo above taken just prior to opening. They’ve got the hike-to terrain open up on top of the cinder cone…head south a bit to California, Boreal dropped ropes on more terrain yesterday, including 49er…now if you can’t make it as far as the Pac NW you can get off the bus in the Dakotas where Terry Peak opened for a couple days with a sneak peak deal, they’ve scheduled Saturday for their full season opener…three inches of snow at popular Caberfae Peaks in Michigan, that’s not enough to go on but it will help when they get the guns back on, which should be tomorrow or Wednesday…continues to snow at Lutsen Mountains MN, they’ve been doing a weekend thing and looks like they’ll go to full time ops on Friday…place to be in the midwest, as is often the case early season, is Ski Brule on the Michigan UP/northern Wisconsin border. Brule has about 25% of terrain open and blowing snow right now on more of it. They’ve also got a fresh dusting on top of it, so it’s looking good all around…New Englanders enjoying a fresh snowfall and snowmaking temps overnight, after a bumpy start it’s beginning to look like typical early season where the regular twig season players have a couple runs open according to their usual schedules. Especially good reports coming in from Vermont’s NEK where Jay Peak has most of the Jet side open, skiers and riders hiking all over the hill and grabbing plenty of powder over the past few days. In Maine, Sugarloaf running the super quad with their usual early season routes on Hayburner, Kings Landing, and Tote Road…in the Mid-Atlantic, four lifts spinning at Snowshoe WV today, looking good there despite any real accumulation of natural snow thus far, kudos to the snowmakers in the highlands…FIS World Cup recap, hot and heavy action kicked off Friday in Lake Louise Canada where the ladies contested a Lindsey-less downhill. Slovenia’s Ilka Stuhec bested Italian Sofia Goggia and Swede Kajsa Kling; the trio followed closely by reigning overall champ Lara Gut in fourth. Mikaela Shiffrin was impressive in her first Cup downhill, finishing 18th in an effort to add to her overall point totals. Men working the Super G on the front side of Val d’Isere, as reported Friday, Kjetil Jansrud edged Aksel Lund Svindal in the latter’s first race since his latest injury. Italy’s Dominik Paris was third. Saturday the ladies were back on the downhill piste, again Stuhec atop the podium, followed by Gut and then Edit Miklos of Hungary. Shiffrin, for her part, finished a very respectable 13th. Men meanwhile stepped higher up the hill Saturday with a downhill, again Jansrud and Svindal on the podium, again Jansrud on top but this time Svindal split to third by Italian speedster Peter Fill. On Sunday the men returned for a GS event and it was a French show on French snow, with Mathieu Faivre being the first Frenchman to win a GS in France since the great Jean Claude Killy umpteen years ago. Marcel Hirscher racked up deux, Frenchman Alexis Pinturault tres, and two more of his countrymen behind. Have to say Ted Ligety showed glimpses of brilliance finishing 11th, but I’m afraid he’s just a little too banged up and a little to old to be the force he once was. Ladies wrapped up the weekend with a super g, won by Super G, the aforementioned Lara Gut. She was followed by Tina Weirather with Goggia third. Shiffrin found the going a little tougher, finishing out of the points in 34th. When the dust settled on the weekend, Shiffrin still in front on the overall but big gains by Gut as expected and it’s wide open at this point. On the men’s side Hirscher still ahead but Jansrud gained nicely. If you happened to catch any of the men’s action on the various NBC stations you heard the usual professional and interesting play by play from Steve Porino, along with unstimulating color commentary from Bode Miller. As expected, Miller proved incredibly insightful, pointing out mistakes and subtleties that only he could glean. He also proved incredibly lifeless, with all the pacing and excitement worthy of a toddler group lesson on a carpet lift rather than top skiers laying it on the line at 70 mph.
Photo above taken at Mt. Bachelor prior to opening this morning