Now that Steamboat has received nearly 200 inches of snow this season and we’ve enjoyed quite a few memorable powder days thus far, it’s time for a quick break in the snow to enjoy the January sun. This week is full of brilliant sunshine, stunning views and beautiful bluebird days in friendly Steamboat Springs.
Wednesday morning in Steamboat was sure to put a smile on your face. Smooth and grippy groomers covered the mountain from top to bottom, giant pine trees were decorated in a sparkling blanket of white, the air was noticeably calm and those deep Colorado blue skies I particularly love were overhead. I especially noticed the calm air as I admired the snow-covered trees that were standing perfectly still, without even the slightest flinch at all.
Today is a day to enjoy the sunshine and carve some nice and smooth turns on dependable corduroy. With colder temperatures, the corduroy has a really nice grippy texture to it, allowing you to fully trust your edges as you make those fun and easy turns on the slopes. The summit and mid-mountain are seeing warmer temperatures than the base, and the snow conditions make that temperature difference evident. Closer to the base, because the temperature is quite chilly at -2 degrees, the snow is a bit sticky and tacky from the cold. At mid-mountain and the summit, the snow had more glide to it, allowing for smoother and faster turns.
As the day goes on and the January sun warms the mountain, we can expect to see temperatures in the upper 20’s around mid-mountain. These beautiful bluebird days are some of my very favorite days in Steamboat, but they can get off to a chilly start. It’s always a good idea to layer up and think about using heated gloves or boot warmers on mornings like these. I particularly like heated gloves on these colder January mornings as they enable me to capture photos like these without having frozen fingers.
If you are able to make some turns today, take the time to notice the incredible and stunning views the mountain offers. Admire the surrounding peaks and those expansive views out towards Utah, Wyoming, the Flat Tops and Summit County. I always get a humbling sense of peace as I look out at the beautiful country that I’m fortunate enough to call home.
Steamboat has received 196 inches of snowfall this season. Compared to a 30-year average, Steamboat’s snowpack is sitting pretty at 115% so far. The rest of this week will be dry with abundant sunshine, so it’s a great time to get out and enjoy those sunny groomers. The next snowfall is expected to arrive later on Saturday, and we should see some form of snow through the middle of next week. While I enjoyed the sunshine today, I certainly won’t complain about a potential snowy and powdery next Wednesday, but for now, I’ll enjoy Steamboat’s bluebird beauty.
Erin Campbell, Alpine Skier