Can you hear the giddy crinkle-crackle of smiling crystals in the Elkhead snowman’s grin?

Mother Nature is back in her groove. It’s real, live winter out there, Steamboat. The snow stake is finally getting a workout: almost 4 inches of snow fell overnight, 14 in the last 48 hours, and it’s still coming down. The ski area has undergone a genuine midwinter metamorphosis.

Snowy skies reign over Sundown Express.

We’re skiing under a winter storm advisory today, with up to 8 inches expected by midday. That’s a powder day, any way you look at it, my friends. We started the morning with pow, and the way things are filling in, you’ll have late afternoon freshies, too. It’s the real deal.

Dip into the trees today. Shadows and Closet are famous firsts, but I love 2:30 trees and that shot of aspens to the left of Sunset. The twigs are nearly gone on Ted’s Ridge now, too, which makes for a fabulous trip down to the gondola on a snowy day like today.

Pow without the people: Ted’s Ridge

It’s cold and blustery up top, but as you descend into the trees and more protected places below Storm Peak, it’s relatively calm. Bundle up in neck gators and goggles and your real winter jacket. Visibility is limited high on the mountain, but the soup opens up as you work your way down.

Wind is a factor up top.

The weekend forecast looks dry, but there will be plenty of leftovers to enjoy from this week’s storms. And the forecasts predict the rest of January is going to stay groovy with fresh snow every couple days.

Let’s hear it for snowflakes! Crinkle-crackle and woot woot!

Jennie Lay, Telemark skier

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