It was a bluebird day with a reported 14-16 inches of new snow. It got quite cold prior to the snowfall, freezing up the old wet surface, but not before allowing the new snow to bond. We found 8-10 inches settled out, with a couple of bonus inches at the highest elevations. Knowing it would be a battle for first tracks, an early bus was caught and we started the day on Little Superior buttress.
The old surface could still be felt on the steeper slopes, but on the lower angled run outs, skiing was better than a dust on crust day.
We skinned up Cardiac, onto the ridge and skied the skier's right chute without incident. Only the bowl was skied, since if the lower break over was done the heli would have poached Cardiac while we climbed back up.
Sure enough while climbing for the second run, the heli landed on LSB. No telling for sure, but likely we'd have lost a second run.
A second run was made off the top, with the first and second skiers taking the scoured line.
MW goes first.
Marla, Mark's girlfriend took second tracks.
I went last. I was a little worried about the wind drifting so I cut across the slope, triggering the wind loaded pocket, which ran down into the apron erasing the first two sets of tracks.
We climbed to the top for a third time and I was able to get a shitty picture of the slide. The slight gap in the cornice line upper left of the photo is where the cut was initiated.
The afternoon convection fog rolled in as we skied off the top into Mill B south.
A short traverse across and up the west facing provided an entry into upper Mineral, with the fog still providing somewhat limited visibility.
Not a bad way to start the spring, with a good powder day in Cardiff and Mineral
I started on the Bowman trail with very warm temperatures. Encyclopedia snow was the story for the day. It took several hours to reach the upper Alexander, Cabin Run ridge, where I discovered a good sized slide off the ridge, down the upper east chute into Alexander.
It was a couple of hundred feet wide, leaving a good sized debris pile in the bottom.
On the summit I had a good view of Broads and noted a small glide avalanche had run off the rocks just north of the Diving Board.
By the time I summited it was after 3 and the whole face had rollered. The only thing I felt safe skiing was the north facing nose. I still had a few pinwheels and rollers chasing me on the steeper section.
The exit out Porter was slow going, but the old surface remained supportable and a coat of yellow wax allowed snowboarding all the way out to the road.