Locals (and lucky day trippers) rejoice as the ’Boat gets clobbered.
A low pressure system moving from the northwest through Idaho and Wyoming dumped two feet of signature light, low-density snow in Steamboat Springs this past weekend, undoubtedly leaving owners of local businesses without many of their employees.
On Friday, 15 inches draped the mountain. With small crowds and continued snowfall, my buddies found untouched lines well into the afternoon. I called fellow alpine racing coach and Steamboat native Scott Ptach to ask if I should make the drive from Boulder in a rear-wheel drive van. “My tracks in the Concentration trees are filling in at the top of every run,” he said. “We’ve been lapping Closet and Shadows. Untracked stashes every time. It just keeps getting better and better. You should be here.”
Treacherous with a high chance of misadventure describes the road conditions. I fishtailed over Gore Pass, dodging flipped CDOT snowplows, buried SUVs, and two truckers who’d left reason on I-70. But the powder pilgrimage paid off. The next morning brought waist-deep shots in the No Names trees and the backcountry off Pony Express near Middle Rib. When another band of weather dropped an additional eight inches Sunday morning, we looped Thunderhead and Pony Express, finding untouched lines every time and skiing near bottomless conditions until our knees and lungs ached. —Jace Conrad | Photo by Steamboat Ski Resort / Larry Pierce