Pockets or Corduroy
A Pocket for Corduroy was one of my favorite childhood books and is still a favorite book to read to my two sons. The cuddly protagonist of a teddy bear, Corduroy, is in search of a pocket for his overalls with his new best friend, a little girl named Lisa. While this book really has nothing to do with winter mountain conditions, it did give me inspiration for my blog title today, Pockets or Corduroy.
Pockets of powder or fresh corduroy, that was the big decision on the mountain today. Dipping into the trees, I found some nice leftover powder stashes from yesterday, and on the slopes, I found some pristine and grippy corduroy, perfect for some fun and trustworthy turns.
Tuesday was an exciting powder day in Steamboat, and from what I heard, it sounds like most of the town was on the mountain to enjoy it. Today felt much more mellow and quiet, with fewer people on the slopes and tree runs defined by solitude.
On a true powder day, the Two Thirty trees are generally my first run of the day. (I think most locals will admit that they have their own powder morning routine, trying to squeeze as many of their favorite runs in before heading off to work.) Today, as I rode down a groomed Three O’Clock, I was tempted to continue on the grippy corduroy that was laid out all over a run that typically isn’t groomed; however, I decided to check out the trees instead. While the fresh powder had been found yesterday, there were still some fun little pockets of powder scattered throughout the trees.
What is especially great about a day like today is that you can find and enjoy those powder pockets, but when your legs are tired, you can enjoy the cruise of a soft groomer. As a Valentine’s Day surprise, Three O’Clock, Rolex and Valley View were all groomed overnight and in great condition early this morning.
Speaking of Valentine’s Day surprises, my husband gave me a new pair of goggles, and the low-light lenses were not only highly enjoyable, but also highly necessary on a day like today. The summit of Steamboat was covered in some morning fog, underneath cloudy skies, making for some pretty tough visibility on the slopes. While the trees provide better definition visibly, today was still a day where you would definitely benefit from low-light goggle lenses.
In the past four days, Steamboat has received 15 inches of new snow, making for some really nice skiing and riding conditions. Today, temps were more mild, but with the elevated humidity in the air, the damp chill that can bring is still reason to dress in layers.
If you’re lucky enough to ski with your sweetie today, make sure to take a ride on Bar U.E. to reach the top of Storm Peak. A slow ride through the snowy trees amid chickadees flying here and there — what’s not romantic about that? Since I wasn’t snowboarding with my sweetie today, I didn’t ride Bar U.E., but I’ll leave you with a photo of a pretty cool squirrel that I met on Flintlock this morning, enjoying the fresh corduroy in a different way.
Happy Valentine’s Day, and happy Wednesday!
Erin Campbell, snowboarder
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