SEARCH BY LOCATION:
Early Snow and a Solstice Storm Gets Tahoe's Backcountry Going | UNITED STATES, CALIFORNIA | 01/02/2010, by BrennanLagasse
"Oh man, Christmas is Friday !?!" That was my final thought last night as I drifted to bed after 6 hours of continuous powder skiing knowing I was scheduled to wake up at 5 am for an early backcountry mission in the morning. It never fails to amaze me that no matter how much I have on my plate, or how many deadlines I'm supposed to make, if it snows, I go skiing.
Today was another great day in the world of a Tahoe backcountry skier. We've been lucky enough to have a few storms roll in and let us ski relatively early for a region that demands copious amounts of snow to fill in all the rocks, stumps, and other obstacles no one wants to hit on those early-season missions. Early October left us a little gift, and a few pulses in November helped the cause as well. Then there was the mid-December storm that dropped upwards of 5 feet-now that really helped. All that snow yet many lines and peaks have remained out of play. But we're getting closer by the storm, and this morning foreshadowed the many good days to come as we all hope El Nino provides what's forecasted for our respective snow playgrounds around the globe.
Today was a Jake's day. This is probably one of the more used backcountry shots in the Tahoe Basin, although if you know your way around the mountain's sprawling summit there's almost always a totally fresh way to descend. Case in point, after yesterdays blue bird pow day that followed a quick foot overnight, many would assume Jake's saw enough tracks to venture elsewhere today. Tell that to the several cars already parked in the lot as I met my partner well before the warm rays of the sun rose over Tahoe's East Shore to cast its light on another beautiful day to be alive.
After "skrunning" up the mountain as Jeff calls it (that's a mix of running while skinning), and a couple of smooth as silk pow laps through old-growth trees with a view that can't be beat, I found myself in the familiar position of racing home to get back to the numerous deadlines that have piled up like the storm of the century since I got back to the country earlier in the month. It felt so good to ski an untracked Jake's this morning that I momentarily forgot about all the work that needs to get done because skiing Jake's means things are coming into play in Tahoe. This is more than a good thing because since Monday's Solstice, It's officially winter!
Then I got home. My powder glow still in affect I couldn't let the list bog me down. Besides, the computer company that's fixing my source for work, writing and plotting the next adventures had still not called about my laptop. It's a bummer that I came home from some all-time ski travels to Patagonia and Antarctica, that I can't wait to share with everyone, to find my computer had crashed. But in reality, it doesn't matter. Today's epic skiing provided the sign that winter is fully underway. All those dry snowless summer days are gone. Those turns reminded me that the list will get done, my hard drive will get saved (I pray!), and I'll soon be able to share a story of skiing the frozen continent. Most importantly, today, I realized winter's here and we can all go skiing!