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Archive for February, 2010

Locations: Dick’s Peak, Janine’s Ridge, Maggie’s Peaks (Desolation Wilderness)

Dates: Saturday, January 30 – Sunday, January 31, 2010

Skiers/Riders: Alex & Nick

Photographers: Nick, unless noted as Alex (although Alex’s shots pretty much blow mine away! Time for me to get a new camera and learn how to use it…)

Weather: Saturday was the tail end of a small Low system that was moving through Tahoe. Skies were grey-bird with intermittent, light snow. Winds started the day slow, but were howling up at Dick’s Peak. Temps at night got to around 10-15 degrees at 9,000 ft. Sunday was blue-bird and generally warm, although once again the ridge top winds at Dick’s Peak were consistent 30 mph. Janine’s and Maggie’s had no wind, fortunately.

Avalanche Conditions:
From the Sierra Avalanche Center:

On Saturday, near and above treeline, pockets of moderate avalanche danger will form in wind loaded areas on NW-N-NE-E aspects, 37 degrees and steeper. Below treeline, avalanche danger is low in wind protected areas.

On Sunday, near and above treeline, pockets of moderate avalanche danger remain on wind-loaded, NW-N-NE-E aspects, 37 degrees and steeper. Below treeline, avalanche danger is low in wind protected areas.

We found the snow to generally be very stable at both Maggie’s and Janine’s. As discussed further below, Dick’s was very wind-effected and in most areas had 6-inch wind-slabs sitting on lower density snow. We were able to ski cut and otherwise trigger some small, very slow moving wind-slabs on Dick’s N face.

Synopsis: With Alex and I both about to turn the dredded 30 (me, well, today actually, and Alex on Friday), we figured a good early present would be to get back into Desolation Wilderness and get in some powder skiing. Nothing better than avoiding the fact you are turning 30 by essentially continuing to “live the dream” so to speak. Was a great trip and a good early present.

Warning: There are a lot of scenic pics in the TR, but some great skiing ones near the end as well.

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