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Location: Alpine Meadows
Conditions: Packed Powder
We headed up to Lake Tahoe Friday, New Years Day, for a long weekend at the new Bay Area Ski Bus cabin. After chowing on some lunch at ToGo's our host and BASB owner Brian picked us up in Sunnyvale in a converted 15 passenger van. We loaded up my trusty Volkl Mantra 184s on the roof rack and met up with 4 boarders who were going up with us, Gary, Justin, Kosgey, and Emily. We chatted with Brian as we headed to SF to pick up Diane, the 8th member for the inaugural cabin trip.
We got news of the the Kirkwood Fire some tasty margaritas at Truckee's La Bamba. To avoid the disaster, Brian wisely re-routed his 6 buses scheduled to hit the fire-damaaged resort over to Alpine where we would ski the next morning. We came back to the cabin where a wood-burning stove warmed the entrance and a heated hot tub waited for us on the back deck.
Saturday morning, we were up and atem by 7:00 AM. A quick breakfast and we loaded up the van to hit Alpine Meadows for our first trip of the new year. Alpine has definitely upped their customer service game. Before we even got out of the van we had lift tickets in hand and a mountain host offering to carry our skis to the mountain. I took a few warm up laps on Hot Wheels while Jodi sorted out her rental skis. She got some nice Volkl all-mountain skis and we quickly headed to Alpine's back side to enjoy the sunshine.
On the way back to the front side, I had a minor slip that almost cost me dearly on Expert Shortcut. I caught an edge about 10 feet above a large exposed rock cliff and lost a ski. Luckily, I knew the boulder was there so I dug my ski poles into the ground to arrest my slide over the face. It took a long while to click back in but I skied down to the base where Jodi was waiting with a quizzical look wondering what took so long and how she managed to beat me down.
After a quick noon break we hooked up with Brian for some turns in Alpine Bowl, where the photo of Jodi and me above was taken. Brian rips, so any of you who want to try to keep up with him, I suggest you sharpen skis and prepare for an all-out assault on the mountain. We also met up with host Mario and Sliding on the Cheap creator Daryl.
We skied the rest of the afternoon with Brian and Diane and tackled some mogul runs as well as some easier stuff before wrapping up for the day. On the last run of the day we ran into David who runs the Alpine website and saw him shooting his little ripper kids in the terrain park.
Alpine is a fantastic mountain. If you make it there, be sure to find your way to the backside and explore Sherwood. I'm still looking for fabled Munchkins. Next time I'll track down one of the locals to show me the way.
Monday, January 04, 2010
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