Winter at Tremblant was back with a bite. Frostbite that is.:-s
-18c with 35kmh winds in the morning. Temps might have reached a warm -16c.
Snowreport had 82 out of the 92 Tremblant’s trails scheduled to open.
The overall conditions for Tremblant were pretty good if you can endure the cold weather AND the wind.
This week Morgane had her music lesson, so I went solo. The initial plan was to crank up the vertical and runs on the steep wide open blue/black groomers that GPaul likes so much. 😉
Arrived on the Northside this week again, started off on the Duncan Express (HSQ) which climbs up the entire Northside’s 595m in 10 minutes. Fast chairs can be great, but not when the wind on the upper part of the mountain in blowing straight in your face. OUCH…
CHANGE OF PLANS…
Let’s find some lesser known trails that are sheltered. Started off skiing one of the one t-bar lines (Marie-Claude Asselin), there was even a couple of inches some powder snow on the side of the trail. It’s helps when the trails is narrow and not wide-open so it can capture the snow. (it snowed a few inches this week). Once at the bottom, I headed inside for a quick adjustment of clothing to better face the cold. Tony would have loved this day, imagine when I have to get in, this isn’t Bridger Bowl, Montana on January 22nd… 😉
Once back outside I repeated the exercise: lesser known and narrow trails. Skied the another old t-bar line (Banzai) all the way to the bottom then headed for the even lesser known trail which used to be the old rope-tow line (prior to the t-bars) which is well hidden and rarely skied even if it’s an official trail (I’m censoring the name). Powder and bumps were on the menu. WoW, I stopped halfway down the mountain to head back up via the Lowell Thomas triple and repeat that run. Probably my favorite run of the day. After I had to get back inside for 40 minutes thawing out of the feet, hands and face (even if it was mostly covered).
Skiing again on the North side, I decided not to do many runs on the south side simply because the strong wind blowing up hill on large popular groomers was probably not much fun unless you don’t mind if your face falls off. 😯 Although much of the hill was covered in packed powder conditions, there was some large patches of ice on some large traffic areas that were windswept. The best trails were in fact the ones where there was sometimes a sign that warned about the “Marginal” conditions. 😆 Marginal conditions were generally the natural snow trails where there wasn’t any McSnow perfectly groomed stuff. Sure, you might encounter some odd rock or branch, but they skied much better in the most part better that the “non-marginal” runs.
Okay, next run was the upper part of Superieur then the lower half of CBC (I missed the entrance (might have been closed) of CBC). Superieur is a relatively new trail (typical large trail) which cut part of the isolated CBC (this trail used to be off-limit – maintenance trail under the CBC Antenna), however since it was added on the trail, I never seen any good conditions on it.
The next run was entirely off-the-map (and illegal), I decided to ski the powerline not far from CBC, nice powder turns which were surprising deep. The powerline then meet up with the short, steep and chaotic Boiling Keetle which was pretty well scraped off of snow. I guess once you had something on the map which is easily accessible with HSQs everywhere and little snow, this is what you get (editorial note like Orford since they added they Hybrid-Chondola). It was fun anyway. \:D/
Back to the summit with the Duncan Express and once (again) nose was hurting, I went inside the Grand Manitou Lodge at the summit a few short minutes in order to get some sensation back to the tip of my nose. :^o
I decided to try another “old” trail non-longer on the trail on the South side, however two (Kandahar and Grand Prix) of the main Upper black trails were closed for races, so I didn’t access to were I wanted to down so I had to settle for the blue Alpine line next to Beauvallon all the way to the bottom.
When you ski alone and you use the single lines for the lift, it’s hard to get a few on how long are the liftlines. I was waiting 10 minutes in the single line for the gondola, the “heated” gondola… 8) The other folks had at least a 15-20 minutes wait at 1:15pm.
The board at the top of the mountain indicated wait times for the gondola (South base-to-summit) at +15 minutes, the TGV (HSQ on the Upper South), Duncan Express (HSQ North base-to-summit) and Flying Mile (HSQ on the Lower South) all at 10-15minutes and under 5? minutes for the Lowell Triple and Expo Express. Good turnout regardless of the temperature. The Soleil lift and side were closed, I presume it was closed due to the high winds blowing across that side of the mountain. I guess that you would have to subtract the trails that were suppose to be open from the total 82 trails open. 🙄
Once back on top, I headed toward The Edge which is serviced by a slow quad and has a few glades. I skied under the lift which is a run called High Emotion. The top part if steep and was windblown, icy and rocky, but once again you could find a few pocket of loose cold white stuff. I headed into the woods after a few hundred feet, but they glades had some crap exposed or hidden under the snow. 😕
It was almost 2pm, I was a bit cold and hungry. A quick 40 minutes lunch. After that I headed back to the Upper South side to see if the Grand Prix was still closed for the race, yes it was, so I turned down the short and steep DunZee to McCulloch. I took the TGV, skied Beauchemin all the way down the bottom on the North side (which had nice soft snow on the side and sheet of ice in the most exposure middle).
I had maybe two other runs before closing, I wanted to re-ski the old t-bars lines, but the trails were closed so I did a Duncan-Devil River to the bottom. I got at the bottom 10 minutes before the lifts closed, but I decided to call it quits… 😳
Major trails still closed:
The Expo-Cossak-Dynamite trio are still closed, however there was massive snowmaking done on the first two and I would think they should open soon. \:D/
I didn’t see what was happening Vertigo-ZigZag which are the two other marquis steeps, no snowmaking and seemed pretty bare. 😉
Originally posted on Sat Jan 20, 2007 11:20 pm on firsttracksonline