It is time to go out and explore Whistler. This past week ended the rain cycle that has been tormenting Whistler for the past two or three weeks. Since Friday we have seen sun and temperatures hovering around zero degrees. The upper alpine has about an inch of dust on a nice crusty layer in shady spots. Rain runnels are prevalent on the glaciers as well as across the mountain.
Taking advantage of the nice weather, my friends and I decided to go for a short walk around the Blackcomb backcountry on Sunday. We went up the spearhead and then over to stairmaster and skied the couloirs along the SE-E face. By the time we got to the top the sun had softened up some of the snow while snow in the shade was viscous and chundery. Overall was worth the effort to get up there and have a nice day hiking around Whistler.
On Monday I decided to go see if the resort had softened up at all. In smooth sections of the upper mountain the snow was good. You would be able to carve through the top few centimeters of snow. In more skied out areas and moguled runs, it was hard to keep an edge on the mixed ice and hardpack snow. For the rest of the day we lapped groomer runs trying to burn out the legs and go fast.
Looking towards the end of this week we can expect temperatures to increase. Hopefully we will see some spring like conditions soon in the upper mountain to soften things up. While it is sunny though, go enjoy the awesome park Whistler has on both mountains, or go for a walk in the backcountry and enjoy the fresh air and easy walking.
(Photos courtesy of http://www.peterwojnarphoto.com/ )