Wednesday, January 19, 2011


     Ski conditions and the ski experiences are studies in contrasts.   This Monday January 17 was a day of squeaky snow.  The temperature was below zero at the start of the day and never rose beyond 10 F .   If my photo had sound with it you would hear the squeak of boots and skis on the frigid surface.  The next day was entirely different.  Within 24 hours the temperature rose above freezing and produced freezing rain. The next ski day, Tuesday, brought temperatures in the 30's F.   Ski conditions were also seriously different with a thin coat of snow with a crusted surface.   As the skis broke through the crust they acted as if they were on a rail.   It was a challenge to adapt to these conditions especially until the trails had been skied.   Contrasts in ski conditions!

Can You Hear the Snow Squeak?
     Today was a day of comparisons as well.   A couple of weeks ago I visited Toggenburg Ski Area.  It was a gorgeous day of sunshine and deep powder snow.    A memorable time of skiing at Toggenburg.  Today my friend Roger and I ventured to Toggenburg for a change of pace from our usual ski area.  A far different day from my visit a couple of weeks ago.   We had a firm groomed surface but the visibility was limited for most of the day.   The combination of flat light and grey low clouds dominated the skiing for most of the day.  Quite disorienting.   Roger is a pilot  and stated that the conditions caused a disorientation similar to flying a plane into a cloud.   Up and down are hard to sense so one has to rely on instruments.   I guess that was what we were doing this morning.   We were looking for trees and other cues to sense where we were on the slopes.
Roger at Tog - Pilot on Instruments
     Non-skiers have asked me from time to time, "Don't you get bored with skiing all the time?"   No I don't because every day brings a change of conditions,  lighting,  and scenery.   Contrasts!

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