Highs are higher because of the lows. My father never appreciated that part of my personal philosophy, perhaps fearing I would probe for lower depths instead of reaching for new heights. I not only ride the emotional roller coaster, I relish the experience. The roller coaster is an essential part of northeastern skiing. You can enjoy the ride, attempt to cope, or grab a barf bag.
Thus, while a far cry from mid-Aprils past, I was stoked to be skiing more and considerably better terrain than could have been imagined a week ago. My run of the day was a first for me: skier’s left down Upper River Quai. Normally a sheet of ice best avoided, I had a blast flopping through the soft bumps and hopping rocks.
I sampled Dick’s Pizza. While I am glad Jay retained the pizzeria, the atmosphere is considerably different from the run down old school ambiance of the former tram pizzeria. Upon entering Dicks’s, blaring pop music and CNN on a muted widescreen assault the senses. Unchangeable the pizzeria is not. I counted the other patrons: a young couple in street clothes, three bathing suit clad waterparkers, and a pair of chlorinated lifeguards. Just before I left, two skiers arrived but the balance remained decidedly non-skiers.
Excepting trails ending on Ullr’s (which required a very short walk), I skied all of Jay’s open terrain. Groomed terrain was definitely best in the morning. Despite posting everything off the ridge was open excepting Face Chutes, both Green Beret and Valhalla were roped. And perhaps just as well. Ungroomed snow was extremely difficult to ski — the mush fest on Can Am was astoundingly unsatisfactory.
The best bumps were on U.N., Derrick, and the unnamed segment under the Freezer where Alligator Alley joins the Goat (a personal first ski for me, I have never seen that pitch open). Taxi was disconnected by early afternoon and will require walking (or creative woods skiing) for Sunday. Base depths on Jet and Haynes are very good. Jay should be able to open next weekend if they can plow enough snow down to the Triple.