Serenity on the Slopes
January is here. Sure, it has been here for 12 days already, but January is really here. After the hustle and bustle of the holidays with many excited skiers and riders in town, there is always something peaceful and calm about the month of January. I often think of it as “serenity on the slopes”.
The air feels peaceful, the slopes feel calm, the valley feels serene. Oh, and did I mention that the snow is fantastic? Since the start of January, Steamboat has received 42 inches of snow, and that is following the last week in December that brought Steamboat 28 inches of holiday cheer. With such consistent and recent snowfall, Steamboat’s mid-mountain base is 49 inches and the summit base is 83 inches.
This week we’re enjoying colder temperatures but sunny skies, which is very typical weather for January in Steamboat. With a solid base, the groomed slopes were in phenomenal shape this morning. The corduroy had the right amount of depth to its ripples, and the perfect amount of softness paired with just the right amount of glide. Thank you snowcat drivers, your grooming efforts overnight were very much appreciated this morning!
I mentioned that we’re seeing colder temperatures, but I should also mention that we are seeing inversions higher up on the mountain this week as well. While the valley floor was single digits this morning, mid-mountain was 24 degrees and the summit was 16 degrees (and that was reported at 5 A.M.). In terms of corduroy, temperatures of that nature (high teens, low twenties) can make for really nice and almost effortless turns.
This morning was a little extra special for me as I brought my Dad along to ski First Tracks with me. He skis often with my kids and I, but having an early morning to take in the “serenity on the slopes” that were groomed to perfection was a morning to remember. It was his first time coming up early to do First Tracks with me, and quite frankly, he was blown away by the incredible conditions, lack of other skiers and riders, beautiful morning light and stunning scenery of the valley below and the Flattops beyond.
Something else that made this morning a little extra special was that Sunshine Express is back up and running after its motor was successfully replaced. While Sundown Express also accesses the top of Sunshine Peak, having the easier accessibility to some of the sunnier runs like Tomahawk, Quickdraw, Flintlock and Sunshine Lift Line made First Tracks more enjoyable.
While the sun is out, I hope you get out and soak up a little extra Vitamin D as it looks like the snow should return on Friday. Ski and ride with care and have a great day on the mountain!
Erin Campbell, Alpine Skier & Snowboarder