4-09-10 by dave

Friday morning was cold and clear considering the forecast called overcast skies. The North facing Groomers had a cold dry chalky consistency, which got progressively firmer as  the elevation dropped.  Regulator was firm as well waiting for the Sun to begin softening the surface, which it finally did after 1:00PM. There was enough loose snow to get a solid edge into, so total avoidance was not necessary.  The off trail was a different matter, where the aspects had been worked by the Sun over the last couple of days.  The cold air slowed the softening process and preserved the cold chalk well into the afternoon.  A fast moving impulse moved through, bringing a brief snow flurry that came and went before I could change back to goggles after I had just went for the casual sun glass look.  After the flurry, the temp. moved up, beginning the full softening process.  This was most apparent in Mineral Basin were the South exposures began to soften nicely offering smooth carve-ability on the Groomers.   Regulator also got the sweet softness going, with the groomed section maintaining the smooth ride  top to bottom.  Big Emma finally broke around 1:00PM offering a longer decent than by passing it.  Tomorrow look for continued quality on the North facing Groomers  with the South, West, and lower elevations presenting rather crusty conditions.  Mineral Basin will begin softening first with the Sun working from the first rays of dawn.  Big Emma will also be crispy, though they may run a re till to create better traction.  It is that time of the season, so work the sun and, perhaps, test out the North facing for the last remaining cold chalk, then move back to get the softening aspects as they develop.  The forecast is for a beautiful day tomorrow, so get the most out of it and don’t feel that the morning is a wash out because there will be options that will surprise you.  I’ll be there early since we were denied that one day.   See you there!!!   TTFN!!

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