Ski Washington Challenge - David's Diary

Blog documenting my progress on the Ski Washington Challenge

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Summit at Snoqualmie

My trip to The Summit at Snoqualmie turned out to be well-timed, as I found fresh powder in abundance. I started from Summit Central, where I did a few laps off the ridge through the deep powder off the trails. I rode the Triple 60 chair for a few laps of fluff, then braved the lift line at the Central Express for a quick ride to scope the terrain park. I rode the powder along the rope line, carving deep turns right down the hill as I watched the locals enjoying the ample jibbing opportunities provided in "Central Park".

Not being a big fan of rail riding, I moved on to the east part of Summit Central, and a triple chair that serves some of the finest slopes at the Summit. I did a few laps in the area before curiosity got the best of me and I took the "I-90" crossover to Summit East. It turns out that you need a very large amount of speed for this trail, or you can plan on some skating - and there is no warning sign, so consider this your final notice.

After making the long trek to Summit East, I found a double chair with some crowding issues, and only did a few laps before beginning the trek back to Central. Having tired of the lines at Summit East, I checked the time, and realized I should get to Alpental while I still could do a couple of laps on the Edelweiss chair. I rode the crossover back (again, long flat trail) to Central, took the lift to the top and then rode straight down to the bottom to catch the shuttle.

After arriving at Alpental, I took a ride up Armstrong to find that the Edelweiss chair had a twenty minute line. I elected to do a few laps on the lower mountain before getting in line. The lower mountain was in pretty good shape for the afternoon, but soon I had the urge to get to the top, so I made my way into line and began the slow waddle toward the summit.

Twenty minutes later I was whisked away up the hill, into clouds that were just starting to break up. My timing was very good as the weather finally broke in time for me to enjoy a couple of runs. I took my first around the ridge and down a chute on the Edelweiss side, and then took the plunge on Upper International for my second run.

I had never had the chance to ride the back part of Alpental, and I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of space and the quality of the terrain. I made quick work of the bowl, and then skirted my way through powder to the area known as Snake Dance. Here the trail runs into a gladed area of steep trees, where the snow had held up very well through the day, and I found plenty of fresh lines through the trees. I remembered Alpental as a special place, and this visit only reinforced my memory.


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