Report from Monday 7th December, and brought to you by 10 Barrel Brewing
Yesterday, December 7, 2020, I was fortunate to have my first day on the snow this “winter” at Snow Valley Mountain Resort.
I put the word winter in quotations because living in Southern California, we don’t exactly have a prototypical winter every year. Where I live, the mornings and evenings may feel a little chilly, and the sun sets a little earlier, but the weather doesn’t deviate too much throughout the year.
Luckily, we have the mighty San Gabriel and San Bernardino Mountain ranges, that rise to over 10,000-feet in elevation. During the winter, we have several great day trip ski areas within an hour and a half to two hours.
While Southern California has had a slow start to the winter season with minimal natural snow, I made my way to Snow Valley for some early season turns.
Snow Valley has the only high-speed detachable 6 place chairlift (Chair 1 – Snow Valley Express) in Southern California – and it’s open, servicing a couple of intermediate and advanced trails from Snow Peak to the base lodge. In addition to Chair 1, Snow valley is also running Chairs 6, 13, and a few conveyor lifts for beginner skiers and riders.
We had a snowstorm a month ago that gave our winter season a start, but the ski area is open and running thanks to its robust snowmaking system. They’ve been able to take advantage of low temperatures overnight to lay down some fresh snow on their groomed runs.
I lapped the Snow Valley Express for a good three hours, taking in the scenery and being thankful to be back on the hill again. The snow was groomed and firm, with a nice layer of snowmaking on top to hold your edge. There were maybe fifty cars in the parking lot, and everyone on the hill had a smile on their face and seemed to embrace the fact that lift-served skiing is open and accessible again after the ongoing covid-19 pandemic shut down in March 2020.
Speaking of March 2020, this was my first day back riding since I had herniated disc surgery nine-months ago on my lower back. The feeling of being back on the hill was surreal, a mix of relief and pure joy that I’m able to enjoy a sport I love again. I’m sure I’ll be sore, but I know in my mind the comeback continues.
See you again soon Snow Valley.