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SLC 2/26-2/29

KayOss

Certified Ski Diva
We saw a potential storm brewing so we adjusted our schedules to make a road trip to SLC. Arrived on Sunday (2/26) and set up at the hotel in Sandy. Looking at the Monday forescast (no snow, clear day) we opted for Deer Valley to get some practice runs on their carpet groomers; off piste was firm so we did not adventure far from the groomies.
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Next day we knew was going to be brutal but powder-potential so we took the bus to Alta - wise choice as the canyon was closed overnight for avy-control and we were at the head of the line when it opened. (see below about the shuttle bus). Arrived at Alta and the wind was whipping and a weee bit chilly. Top of Collins the temp was 0º and the wind 30+mph. Visibility was rare but when you could see, I had some fabulous fresh powder turns! And then there were those instances when the snow was blowing and you couldn't tell which way to point your skis! While I wanted to follow the Alta Guide provided by @marzNC we had to go where we could see. Ever see Collins lift this empty?
Ever see Collins lift this empty?
Thursday we headed to Snowbird and while it was windy at the top of Little Cloud (surprise, right ?) Mineral Basin was fabulous - ridge from the top to the bottom, fun runs were had off Road to Provo Rasta Chutes and at the bottom Harpers and Tricep to Madam Annie's were soft and fun.
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Crossed over to Alta for some exploring (first time doing this) and road Collins a few times looking for the right exposure. The snow was staying firm so we were searching for softer snow and took the HT to what we thought looked right and headed down Sunspot - uh, bumpity bump chunk.
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Need more tips on where to find where it softens up first. Headed back to to the top and if it wasn't blowing 50+mph and seriously trying to blow me across the surface - set my edges and slowly made it to the Snowbird gate.
Great 3 days of skiing and had to head back home - trying to put together one more run this month!

LCC Shuttle Bus: We opted for the shuttle on Tuesday due to the weather and departed from Historic Sandy Station which is the FIRST pick up location. If you load after this location, you will probably not get a seat and/or not get on the bus. Buses run every 30 minutes into the canyon. Ikon pass holders ride for free, others it's $5/each way. Each bus can take 70 people and gear. Peak times they will run back to back buses. For the ride out of the canyon, same timing of every 30 minutes and Alta is the first loading spot. Snowbird has two pick up locations before you head down. After 2:00 pm it's sardine can and you may have to wait for the next shuttle. IF they can get more drivers, they would like to run every 15 minutes; drivers need a minimum of 6 months experience in the Valley before being considered for canyon runs. AND interesting the buses have chains that automatically deploy while traveling (less than 25mph). All this from the nice driver we got to chat with.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
LCC Shuttle Bus: We opted for the shuttle on Tuesday due to the weather and departed from Historic Sandy Station which is the FIRST pick up location. If you load after this location, you will probably not get a seat and/or not get on the bus. Buses run every 30 minutes into the canyon. Ikon pass holders ride for free, others it's $5/each way. Each bus can take 70 people and gear. Peak times they will run back to back buses. For the ride out of the canyon, same timing of every 30 minutes and Alta is the first loading spot. Snowbird has two pick up locations before you head down. After 2:00 pm it's sardine can and you may have to wait for the next shuttle. IF they can get more drivers, they would like to run every 15 minutes; drivers need a minimum of 6 months experience in the Valley before being considered for canyon runs. AND interesting the buses have chains that automatically deploy while traveling (less than 25mph). All this from the nice driver we got to chat with.
Good to know there is still some sort of bus option that can work.

Need more tips on where to find where it softens up first.

During my trips to Alta in April, the first area to soften is Sugarloaf, then Supreme, and finally Collins. Of course, The terrain off the Ballroom traverse and the High T are opposite sides of that drainage, so that's a factor as well when following the sun.
 

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