Tag Archives: Spring Skiing

Conditions at Crystal


There’s still plenty of snow up high at Crystal. The groomed pistes are skiing great, but later in the day yesterday the non-groomed stuff got pretty sticky. Bring your wax.Image

The Bittersweet End of a Season


Final Sweep on Northway Chair

Sunday marked the last day of the 2011-2012 Winter Season at Crystal Mountain. With sunny skies, the bikini downhill on Saturday and a gaggle of people on the King at sweep, it felt like the end. Cars filed out of the parking lot beeping their horns and a crowd lingered on the patio, drinking in one last spring ski day.

Grego Lasek skied every single day this season. The “B Lot Boys” represented in the lift lines and out on the slopes. Others carved their signatures on the snow and cheered each other on.

Overall it was a great season with plenty of snow, numerous powder days and many avalanche control mornings. We battled the wind and weather, and at times I just wanted the storms to mellow out so we could run the chairs. But all in all, I’m not complaining.

I’m especially not complaining because Crystal isn’t really closing. Even though the Winter Season is officially over, we are re-opening on Friday for our Spring/Summer Season. With all the snow still on the slopes, we’ll keep running the chairs for skiing until it melts. At this point, that could be well into June or even July.

Sunny days melt the snow faster than rainy and even warm, cloudy days. So if we have a nice Spring (which a part of me is really rooting for) than the snow will melt faster. But if the coming weeks and months bring cool, cloudy days, then we’ll be skiing on the 4th of July.

I, for one, am looking forward to some sunny, Spring skiing days. Hope to see you out there.

Here Comes the Sun


I am thrilled to wake to sun this morning. A sunny day in the mountains trumps one on the city any day. Up here, the sky is bigger, we’re closer to the sun and our bones are in that much more need of warmth. Bring it on.

Here's the shot from our webcam this morning

Skiing on the 4th of July


The weather forecast is looking up. Fireworks stands are popping up in Safeway parking lots. Bags of charcoal, stacks of paper plates and hamburger buns are flying out of the grocery stores. It can be just one thing: 4th of July weekend is coming.

Mt. Rainier from the top of the Gondola

How about something a little different this year to celebrate our country’s independence and the freedom to skyrocket colorful explosives into the night sky? How about, instead of the traditional backyard BBQ, going skiing instead?

That’s right. Crystal Mountain is still open for skiing. We will be open Saturday through Monday for downhill skiing. The gondola is also open every day for sightseeing. And if you haven’t been up there yet, it’s definitely worth the trip. The vista from the top of the gondola is spectacular. Just think of the Christmas card photo you can get with your

Another enthusiastic skier

family. And the views of Mt. Rainier. And the chance to shuss down into Green Valley on perfect corn. Plus, with mountain temps in the high 50s and low 60s and sunny skies predicted for this weekend, you can ski in your hawaiian shirt. And you cut-offs. Or even your bikini for those truly adventurous types.

So forget the backyard and instead ring in the celebration on the slopes.


Spring Skiing at Last


It’s June 4th and Crystal Mountain has finally delivered warm sun and corn snow to Northwest skiers and riders. While the snowpack at the

June 4th skiers on Middle Ferk's

base area has begun to shrink, up at the summit the snow is still mid-winter condition. Today, you could sit in one of the new “green chairs” overlooking Mt. Rainier or just buzz down Middle Ferk’s in shorts and a reverse ball cap.

As Ross Gregg put it, “there was good energy on the mountain today.” Even with a long gondola line to start off the morning, moods were high and laughs were easy. Conditions were

superb on Sunnyside at about 11am. This is spring skiing at its best–the snow softened quickly and maintained a perfect springy forgiveness well into the early afternoon. Then it was time for beers and live music on the patio.

View from the Green Chairs

Not a bad day at all. Looks like tomorrow will be another 5 star day. Hope to see you up there.

What are your favorite ski conditions?


photo by Kim Kircher

With spring skiing upon us (fingers crossed), I’d like to take this opportunity to ask all of you about your favorite ski conditions.

photo by Kim Kircher

Is it powder? Spring Corn? Moguls? Groomers? Anything you’re skiing at the moment? Take this poll and let us know.

photo by John Kircher

photo by Kim Kircher

photo by Andrew Longstreth

Weather Forecast


I have to admit something. I was hoping to wake up this morning to a blue-crisp sky, a sheen of crust across the snow on my driveway, and a promise of spring skiing. The forecast is calling for sun and temps in the 40s up here at Crystal. Tomorrow looks even warmer. Can you say short sleeves and ball caps with 54 degrees predicted.

But that’s not what I saw out my apartment window. (Just for the record there’s only ONE window that I can currently see the sky out of, and that’s the laundry room window. Everything else is covered in snow. It’s beginning to feel like a cave in here.)

Instead of clear skies, we’ve got a layer of fog. Little flakes of snow are falling. Satellite images show a bank of clouds moving to the east with clearing behind. My fingers are crossed.

Notice the splotchy clouds to the west of the thick layer. That's our partly sunny day headed this way.

Spring at last



Hi 40 °F

The forecasters are calling for actual sun up here at

Crystal Mountain today and tomorrow. We have a dusting of new snow up here and the skies are clearing! I better get out there fast. Spring might just last two days.

I also have another bit of good news. My editor just signed off on the final revision of my memoir. Woot woot! We are on track for the November pub date, with Advanced Reader Copies on the way. I look forward to the checking out the galley proof soon.