The clocks have jumped ahead, the sun is out and it feels like spring is on the horizon. Don’t worry though, we still have a month left in the season and this calm weather won’t last long. By the end of the day today, we will be back in a storm cycle and it will be winter again in Steamboat. Even though it will be short lived, the warmer sunny conditions up on the mountain today are a nice change of pace. The groomers are smooth and soft and the leftover pockets of powder from the last storm are still nice and fluffy. So shake off the grogginess of losing an hour of your day and get up to the mountain!

Clear skies and open runs

After hitting snooze a few times this morning I finally got out of bed and up to the resort. While my tardiness made me miss First Tracks, it did give the sun a little more time to peak over the mountain and forced me to ride in different areas than I usually do. After getting off the gondola, the first thing I noticed was how few people were around. The weekday crowds usually take a little bit longer to make it up so there were no lines and the runs were wide open. I decided to take advantage of the empty slopes and headed up 4-Points lift to take a run down Rainbow. This run is pretty wide, so it can handle a lot of people when its busy, but there is nothing quite like having it all to yourself and taking turns from edge to edge all the way down.

View from 4-Points

The next run on my list for a sleepy morning like this was a lap down Longhorn. The runs underneath Pony lift aren’t very long, but they are all nice and steep. Because of how steep and gladed the area is, Longhorn is usually the only groomed run on Pioneer Ridge. Don’t let that prevent you from visiting this area though, the fast laps and steep pitch make Longhorn one of the best groomers on the mountain. It follows the ridge line back down to the bottom of the lift and is full or great views and steep groomed pitches.

Longhorn in the morning light
The top of Longhorn

While it was nice to get a little taste of spring this morning, I could use another few weeks of winter. Fortunately Mother Nature agrees with me and is sending a powerful storm into the area that could drop a lot of snow on the Rockies.  The clouds might be moving in, but the temps are still pretty warm and the mountain is in amazing shape. The groomed runs and even the tracked up powder should be good all day.

Dan Tullos, snowboarder

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