After a busy autumn, which included lots of international travel for Nils and more than a few side projects for me, we were both looking forward to a low-key holiday in Tahoe, one that we hoped would include some powder skiing.
The week before Christmas brought ridiculous amounts of snow. Some ski resorts were claiming well over 7 feet of snow in 7 days. I was grateful I got in one great day of resort powder skiing last week, as Nils had an unfortunately close encounter with a tree the next day, resulting in a type II AC shoulder separation. It meant that my skiing partner was out of commission for a few days, and that it would be more about backcountry skiing, which involves fewer vertical feet and potential collision objects (people, trees, small animals) than at a ski resort.
So backcountry we did on both Christmas Eve and Boxing Day. Both days were lovely and tranquil, with us encountering barely a soul, though the tradeoff was breaking trail for 3,000 or so feet (of which I did maybe 500 feet, thanks to the fact that even gimpy and using only 1 ski pole, Nils is still way faster on the uptrack). Deep snow, views of Lake Tahoe and tall trees that kept the north facing snow impeccable made for two memorable days. And despite the weird weather (snow, snain, wind, wet snow, dry snow, etc.), the snowpack we encountered appeared more stable than we’d expected.
That said things change quickly here. It’s snowing here right now, with more snow expected through tomorrow, and another storm for the weekend. I’m hoping it just brings snow and no layers, for I’d really like another few good powder days with just Nils and the trees before the end of 2010.