Today is the 3rd day in a row that I have been up since 4:45am. The snow is just too good to pass up.
Out of respect for Dug, Kim, Jay, Tyler and his Brother, I shouldn't even post this. They should have been with us for another session on Scottie's this morning. But it didn't go as planned.
We all met at 5:30am at the base of LCC. 12 of us in total (Ben, CJ, Dustin, Mike, Paul, Tyler, Tyler's brother, Dug, Kim, Jay, Rob and me). Because the group was so large and everyone had different schedules, some of us left a few minutes before others to drive to the White Pine trailhead. We would regroup there. As I started up the canyon, I noticed the flashing signs and the Canyon Patrol at the first gate. They were ready to shut down the canyon to do some early morning avalanche control work.
I may have been the last car they let up becuase Dug, Kim, Jay, Tyler and his brother, never made it up the road. They left about a minute after me and got turned around. I would later find out that they went over to Days from the Spruces trailhead in BCC. You'll need to check out Dug's post http://suncrestdug.wordpress.com/ as I heard something about Tyler, a tree, and a possible broken hip?
As we pulled into the WhitePine parking lot, one of the Canyon Patrol was in his truck and rolled down his window and said..."we're going to do some blasting in the mid canyon area, so whatever you do, don't leave this parking lot until the flashing lights have stopped on the sign". I wanted to ask what is his definition of mid canyon was but his window rolled up and he was off.
As we started the climb up Scottie's, it was like a war zone for the next 45 min. Charges going off and echoing off the canyon walls. Some of them closer than others. Some of them so loud, they made me jump.
Scottie's had about a 12-14" of fresh snow and because the road was officially closed, we were the only group on the mountain. That whole thing about the "early bird gets the worm" makes sense to me now.
It was a hard effort breaking trail but Ben, CJ, Dustin, and I took our turns at the front with Mike, Paul and Rob right on our heels. It's crazy how much harder the effort is when you are breaking trail. It's like 10X the effort. My choice of breakfast wasn't helping me either. Maple Bar and a diet coke. But I didn't mind the extra work. I knew how good it was going to be.
About an hour later, we gained the ridge and made our way to the summit.
Dustin, who Dug and I met 2 days earlier and who has some of the same ski friends we do, busted out the camera again. He got some great pics. I hijacked these from his site: http://dustinbutcher.blogspot.com/
Tomorrow should be biking weather. I could end the ski season today and be happy but something tells me Dug will get me out on Timp before the snow is gone.