bə-lō'nē mō'gəls(n.pl.) 1. A group of drinkers with a shredding problem. 2. The combination of snow, booze, and metal.


Shreduary Strikes Sugarbush (Slashin' Snow)

In my attempt to catch-up on all the goings on in this already packed with excitement Shreduary, I'll start with the most recent trip up to the infamous G305.

Everyone on the East Coast, and over large tracts of out West too, have spent weeks, if not the whole season griping about the lack of killer snow.  I won't add onto that much as then to state the obvious.  Before we got back to the condo, a classic January rain system swept through the entire North East, and demolished solid snow packs.  Everything froze solid and great conditions were ruined.

So in the days preceding this trip, we all anxiously hoped for a few inches here and there to repair the damage done.  Thankfully, light repairs were made.  With Sugarbush getting something like 10 inches over the span of 10 days and firing their guns at full blast - and it being already February - I really wanted to get up there.  Hit here or the header to read on and get the rest of the run down.

Brown and one sketchy skier were down for the early condo wake up and 40 mile drive.  Sure enough the drive was a piece of cake, and the mountain was very cold.  Overcast skies didn't break till noon and a light wind made for a finger tip-numbing morning.  The whole point of this drive though was to hopefully get into some of the best snow in VT that could be found, and quickly Brown and myself were rewarded.

Many have regretted the decision to ever follow the lines and paths I blaze through the trees because they usually lead to a cliff or dead end, but my title as "shitty guide" might need to be handed to Brown.  He got us into some woods that were brutally tight, and worst of all, a mine field of covered stumps and rocks.  Every turn onto the toe edge resulted in a face plant.  I'll let this epic Brown toe catch demonstrate:

Do note how he comes to a skidding halt only inches from a tree that would have felt great in the ribs.  Love that one.

But the snow was good and after making a few successful turns through a section of these trees gave me a speed and confidence.  Reality struck - or more aptly, caught - and clipping my edge, I spiraled out of control (more than usual I swear) and took a tree to the forearm and hip.  I wouldn't want to be damaging that face of mine.  How else am I going to pay the bills?

I think the real highlight of the day - beyond the exceptional Switchbacks at the bar and my award winning onesie, would have to be the lines we had and snow we found under the Castle Rock chair.  Because of the rain, the whole mountain had its base encased in ice like I mentioned before.  But all the snow they had gotten landed and stuck perfectly right on top.  The only issue this presented was that after a week of successive turns, this pow was pushed out of the way in some areas and piled up in others.  While some awesome turns were still possible, a quarter of the other turns grinded over ice.

This sort of variability made for some extra Xtreme runs, but nailing a big pile of left over powder makes anything worth it.

Sunday was an awesome mellow day on the hill at Pico.  Let me back up a bit though and explain somethings about how apres ski the afternoon before became a whole night activity.  After Kath got a margarita in her at the Bush, she only craved more.  And I must admit, I did as well.  So after a stop to the local liquor store, we joined up with the rest of the gang at the condo and started whipping up cocktails fruitier than I.  Vodka margaritas anyone?

It wasn't long before Brown was drinking it out of a boot, the ladies were waxing my bat wings and nipples, and my Pentagon death hood was affixed to my head.  A brutal game of Catch Phrase went down, with one-eyed Dan giving great clues like "thing... thing..."  But, mix him into a team with me and obviously we understood the answer was "swamp."

So Pico on Sunday offered up some decent conditions, with thankfully a lot blown on the trails and a lot of grooming done.  I don't think enough can be said this season about the snow makers and groomers not just at Pico, but really all across the country.  While a few spots have been getting dumped on, it's been slim most everywhere else.  These guys have been working the graveyard shift every night so we can slide down in the mornings.

But, I digress.

The brutal cold led to a shorter day to keep the fingers and toes working for the rest of the season.  Most of the afternoon was spent doing a few runs down the well-built park setup, with Tim throwing down an awesome line.  Sacrificing his thumb on one particularly hard landing, he still managed to nail some great spins with a 3 in there too.  My shitty chase cam work did not properly capture the full steeze of the run, but clearly TK has been practicing his jumping and jibbing.

Another awesome weekend at G305 in the books.  Till the next one...

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