Great snow at Snowbowl, but inclement weather cuts day short
Today I had a friend meet me in Flagstaff and we drove to the Snowbowl to do some skiing. With a light snow in the air, it looked like conditions were going to be quite favorable. I was very excited to ride the brand new chairlift and ski some of the new runs that have really opened up Snowbowl, giving them the opportunity to serve more skiers and snowboarders.
After donning our ski gear, we headed up one of the initial chairlifts, when all of a sudden we were enveloped by the clouds. We could barely see the chairs on the lift in front of us. Once at the top, we prepared our decent. I was so excited because the snow conditions were fantastic and it had been a few years since I had been on the slopes. I had a pair of polarized sunglasses on and my friend Pam had some goggles. Within seconds we had to remove them both because there was a light icy-snow coming down that made it impossible to see out of. It was really a catch-22 as it was difficult to ski without the eye protection, but our vision was much better without.
When we made it to the bottom of the first run, Pam said, “I’m going in the lodge for a drink!” The icy wet snow was quite cold. I told her I was heading back up the new chairlift and would meet her in the lodge in just a bit. I went up the first lift, then skied down a bit to catch the new Humphreys Peak Lift. I told myself that I couldn’t go to all this effort to get here and not ski, but after that first run I was a bit cold. When I reached the top, visibility seemed even worse and while the light icy-snow wasn’t bad standing still, it felt like my face was being sandblasted as I skied down. Halfway down the slope I had to stop and tuck my head into my jacket as my face felt frozen, so much so that I even thought my eye were frozen open for a moment as the icy-snow clung to my long eyelashes.
When I finally made it back to the lodge, there was no decision other than joining my friend in the bar for a drink. I cannot wait come back to the Snowbowl during better weather conditions…the improvements they have made with the new chair lift, extra runs and snow-making equipment are quite exciting.