February 5, 2023 – February Freshies

The winter of 2022-23 kept marching forward, and before I knew it, February was here and so was my first patrol day of the month. As usual, I headed out early in the am, with Shaun in tow, and we rolled up to the Pass around 7:20 am. The mountain was looking to be in good shape, with 4-5 inches of fresh snow overnight.

My Subaru at the patrol room

After our morning meeting, we headed out to open the hill. The front of the mountain was skiing all right, with the fresh snow settled over a crust, but by the time we worked our way to Peak 2 I could tell we were in for a treat. The new snow settled over the existing base nicely, and with no crust, the conditions were quite good. We got the mountain open, and then waited for the public before heading down for a second lap. Shannon, Gretchen and I headed over to June’s Run, and I was able to snap a few pictures of them before the masses tore it up…

Shannon enjoying a pow turn on June’s
Gretchen dropping a knee

After opening, the plan for the day was to head to the top of Peak 2 to work with the candidates on some sled training. I met up with the others at the top and it continued to snow — making it a decent day to run the 350!

The crew getting ready up top

The plan was for the candidates to get some work in both on the handles and the tails, and the preferred location was the trees on skiers right of Northern. The candidates worked on full scenarios, by heading down with the unloaded sled to a “patient,” and then loading them and running them down to the base of Peak 2.

Taking a quick pause during a training run
Althea running the sled in the trees

Everyone was looking strong on the first run, and it didn’t take long to get patients loaded and work our way down to the base of Peak 2. After a quick debrief, it was back to the top for another lap…

The gang at the top of Peak 2
Elise working the 100

We switched up roles a bit on the second lap, and rotated folks from the handles to ballast and from ballast to the tail rope. The second lap went smoothly as well, although I was interrupted by a radio call for a couple of incidents.

Sled training with the 100
Gretchen cruising down through the trees

 After taking care of the incidents, it was back to work running laps in the trees. Gretchen and Jenn were rocking it on the 100, with James in tow. It was fun to watch their progress improve with each lap down….

Gretchen, Jenn and James
Harwood supervising the sled training

After shooting photos of Gretchen and James, we headed down and then back to the top for another lap. This time, I shot a few photos of Michael coming down, with James on the tail and one of our instructors in the sled….

Michael pulling the 100
Pulling the 100 through the trees

After lunch, we spent another couple of hours with the sleds, getting everyone more time in the handles and on the tails. The afternoon was quiet as well from the perspective of incidents, a welcome surprise after the previous few Patrol 2 days we’ve been having as of late. I caught a few more runs with the candidates, and before I knew it, it was time for sweep.

Some of the Crew on June’s Run
The whole crew at the bottom of Peak 2

We swept off Peak 2 and then EPA, and I bailed on lower mountain sweep to head in and do paperwork before our evening meeting. It also provided a quick minute to grab a picture of my beer offering for the day – a super refreshing Irish Stout from Coldfire Brewing.

Irish Stout from Coldfire

The evening meeting went quickly, and it was time to enjoy the beer and some good company before packing it up and calling it a day. I grabbed Shaun, and we hit the road, happy with having logged another great day at the Pass. Here’s a parting shot of Shannon from earlier in the morning on June’s Run…

Shannon surfing on June’s Run