12-14-09 by dave

I spent the pre dawn hours trying to knock the ice from the antenna mast after the freezing sleet storm overnight.  My link to mountain ops was out and I needed to know what was up.  The folks off planet have no clue so I don’t even let them color my momentum  .  Monday morning saw 3” of new covering the remains of yesterday’s deposit.  On second Tram the shot 13 gate dropped just as I arrived giving me my pick of the lower Gad Chutes.  I chose the Wide One using the info I gathered previously as I rode Zoom. It seemed to have the least amount of snags to avoid.  I stayed right in the gut to insure a clean run.. The Faithful showed up again this morning despite the low overnight total and helped knock all the air out of this layer.  They all started running out of gas, as did I, after 12:30 PM leaving the Tram with walk on status and all the push totally blown out of the crowd. The fresh shot I got was very soft and consistent , which surprised me due to the wind damage the upper mountain sustained over night.  The pressure on that traverse was crazy with folks blazing along with no regard to the reef bands that intersected the traverse at numerous points.  Cursing and horrible crunching sounds could be heard as they ran aground and in some instances splattered brutally with equipment flying in all directions.  Care on the traverses is recommended.  Also, watch your back on the traverses as fast movers are overtaking you at a rapid pace. The snow in the chute deteriorated with traffic and became very stiff  requiring a fair amount of speed to blast through it.  My knees were taking  a beating making me reign in the turns and get down and round. The full extension round move lets me let the skis take the hit in stead of my joints .  The Peruvian side remains closed, however, the Cats have the main runs knocked out and they are working hard to get it up for us.  The snow over there will have some issues  after the wind and general density.  Clearing skies will insure a beautiful morning and great skiing tomorrow , get there early for the best of the day.  I think the major rush is over and the crowd might back off so take advantage of the lull.  IBBY!!!

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