Crystal Mountain Conditions Report|Low Tide, New Snow

Chaz Diamond | | Conditions ReportConditions Report

photo-2-(2)New snow?! View back towards Elk Chutes. 


The past week was rough for Washington. Not because there was no precipitation, but because it came as a giant pineapple. Rain. Eventually freezing levels dropped low enough for the upper mountain at Crystal to accumulate some snow.


photo-1-(2)That looks  better, new snow filling in Green Valley.


With the rain from the last storm front, a good amount of snow was lost at lower elevations and near rock bands at higher elevations. Once the rain turned to snow 8” stacked up in Green Valley. Definitely is a welcome change from no snow. It would definitely take some imagination to call the new snow powder, but the wet snow filled in shallow spots, smoothing out the terrain and giving the grooming crews something to refresh groomed runs.


photo-2Jumping off wind lips can’t get old. It’s a fact.


One of the tolls of the rain was Chair 6, which lost too much snow at the top unload zone. Forest Queens and Rainier Express still have decent coverage on groomers, but off-piste was a bit treacherous down low. The best skiing of the day was in Green Valley, which still has good coverage even during a low-tide year. North-facing slopes held the most consistent and soft snow. The cream cheese snow was a much needed refresh that was smooth enough to rip pretty much anything. South-facing slopes were very hit or miss. Thanks to a sun crust, a lot of the new snow on South-facing slopes had slid off, leaving a nice ice layer underneath. No thanks to that.


Starting Monday, Crystal will be scaling back operations to Green Valley and Rainier Express only. Things could be worse, considering how many aspects and options there are there in Green Valley, but this is definitely a reminder that this is a low-tide year in Washington. With rain in the forecast, this could be a frustrating week in Washington.


xtalforecastfeb8Rain, you’re a joker.

xtalsnowreportfeb8Plenty of coverage in Green Valley, not so much at the base, hang in there!

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