This report was written by Claire Weiss.
Today was one of the best days of the season. Light, untracked powder and silky-soft groomer perfection.
We planned to come in the afternoon, but a glance at the Palisades Tahoe webcam in the morning quickly changed our minds.
We jumped into the car to be at Alpine for opening. Highway 89 was a bit packed for Thursday morning. At the exit to Palisades Tahoe, most cars turned right to the Olympic Valley road. Fortunately, Alpine Meadows road was empty, with few cars in front of us. We parked near the Subway and, after a short ride, walked to the Summit chair. There was no line, and everyone was chill and happy.
From the chair, the Face looked good, and people were cheering for those skiing the first tracks.
We ventured into Wolverine Bowl and dropped to the off-piste part. It was so much fun finding untracked lines, blowing the clouds of light snow. High Traverse was not open yet, and on our second run, we traversed to the Lower Beaver Bowl, which was filled with light, untracked powder. We skied back to the Summit. It was ~10:30am, and we noticed that the High Traverse to Alpine Backside had just recently opened, so we decided to give it a try. We hiked up to the Upper Saddle, and the views were amazing! There were very few tracks in the bowl, and we dropped into the gully. The snow was a bit heavier here, but it still skied smoothly, especially in the tree areas where it didn’t get that much sunshine. After Backside, we went back to the Summit and did a few laps in Wolverine and Beaver Bowls. The best snow we have found was in the Waterfall, as it lies in the shadow of the rock separating it from The Face and barely gets any sunshine.
At noon, the clouds rolled in, and the top of the mountain sank into the fog. The flat light descended to the summit, and we called it a day. Today was one of the best days of the season.
We haven’t really checked the groomers, only skiing along them back to the lifts. Even those short rides gave the impression of a silky-soft perfection.
The next few days will still be cold, with highs around 30 F and cold nights. The snow should be very good in Wolverine (especially the areas to the right of the groomed part and D5-D8), the Waterfall, and the Palisades areas. Although the tracked snow might not be as good as today, it’s still worth checking out.
Tomorrow calls for afternoon snow showers which will hopefully deliver a nice refresh before the weekend.
Don’t forget to reserve the parking for the weekend and come earlier, even on Friday, as Fridays are the new Saturdays. For the lifts/trails status as well as operations updates, the Palisades Tahoe app is an excellent source.