Another sad event, before I go on and on about how great the snow has been here in Colorado, the snow has also been deadly. Two people have been killed in the East Vail Chutes in avalanches in the last two weekends. It is really sombering to have trained and prepared skiers get caught in slides and not survive. I think many people forget how bad the snowpack can be in the back country. East Vail Chutes is a steep and extreme area out of bounds from the Mongolia bowl, in Vail's famous back bowl area. It is a very popular area for extreme riding and skiing. It is somewhat north facing depending where you drop in. Back in October we got some snow. It was enough to settle in to the terrain and because of limited exposure to the sun stayed there, even though we got very little precipitation for the next month or more. So with the continued poundings of fairly dense snow, it is no surprise that things are starting to rip away. I've seen avalanches up close. Pretty scary stuff. The first victim was prepared and educated and appears to simply have had his day arrive. The second guy probably should have known that if someone died there a week before, you might not want to go ski there after another 50" has fallen on it in seven days. Those are incredible snowfalls. Probably seven or eight feet of snow has fallen in the East Vail area in just the last few weeks. Sad nonetheless. I hope everyone stays out of East Vail Chutes for the rest of the season.
On the bright side... It has been snowing and snowing and snowing. It was an epic week of skiing here at Vail and Beaver Creek. Incredible days one right after another. I think I skied eight of the last 10 days! It has been so incredible every time. I have been skiing very strong but my body is begging for a rest. Good thing I have to work tomorrow.
Here are some pictures to drool over. Hope the new year is treating everyone as good as it is me.
Oh yeah and BIGUP to Farnham, Will, and Fritzie down in Jamaica! Livin' it up on the beach for the rest of us. One Love Fellas.