3/29/17 — Ups and Downs and All Arounds

29 March 2017 — This season’s U.S. Alpine Championships now in the books, Hig Roberts sliced through the fog at Sugarloaf yesterday, besting 7-time National Champ Tim Jitloff on his way to the Men’s GS title. Last year’s GS champ, Kieffer Christianson was third…a series of snowfalls and good skiing has returned to Colorado’s popular Summit County areas, we use Arapahoe Basin as a sort of “canary in the coal mine” and they were slowly but surely roping off terrain, back up to 100% this morning…Stratton Vermont down to about 65% of their trail count, but they’re looking at snow this weekend to freshen things up. I’ve skied Stratton a few times in my life, and I can tell you the best conditions I ever experienced were on an April weekend after a fresh snowfall. So don’t count southern Vermont out just yet…my buddy Jeremy reports on the New England Ski Industry website that small but mighty Ski Blandford in Massachusetts is going through some financial difficulties. Recently they did not open mid-March weekends despite fabulous conditions resulting from Winter Storm Stella. Blandford is operated by the Springfield (MA) Ski Club and is troubled by dwindling memberships in recent years according to NewEnglandSkiIndustry.com…BTW that’s a terrfic website, worth a bookmark if you’re in the northeast…photo above from Anthony Lakes Mountain Resort in Oregon, they’re 100% open and expecting snow for the weekend, up to a foot of fresh. Only fly in the ointment is that they’re banging it up Sunday afternoon, so get after it…sorry to report that 56-year-old passholder Michael Black died a few days after crashing on the Summer Days run at Wolf Creek CO last week. Davey Pitcher, CEO of Wolf Creek says that Black “said that he lost a ski which resulted in him losing control and he said he was tomahawking. Unfortunately, he said that he thought he broke his neck.” Black, who never lost consciousness, was stabilized and flown to St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood, CO but succumbed to complications on March 25th. Our thoughts are with his family…Snowbird UT just got a foot of fresh, they’re running all 11 lifts today and expecting more snow tomorrow. Unfortunately this is that time of year when they also get lightning storms, so be aware things could go awry before you book your flight. With apologies to Mark Lindsay, life does have its ups and downs and all arounds…Mountain Creek NJ done for the season. Their #1 competitor, Camelback in Pennsy, is still serving up great conditions but the crowds are dwindling.

Above photo courtesy Anthony Lakes Mountain Resort