We made it up to Mont Ste Marie just after 9am to find beautiful mind-winter conditions in April! The temperature was around -2C and there was little or no wind and the sun was out. The skiing was so good that we stayed till last chair. The runs were nicely groomed fresh snow with no ice, that gave you the confidence to really rip. Pretty much everything was open with the best runs of the day being Dustin Cook, Formidable and Tornade Bas. I can't think of a year with conditions this good at MSM this late in the season. Usually by now only the Vanier side is open the conditions are slush. Hopefully they will stay open another weekend. Yes its been a cold April but make the best of it people, ski ski ski.... no golf yet.
Where is everyone?
My buddy has some weird skis.
This lunch might slow me down.
Where the Klotz are we!
Sous Bois in April
What most likely would be my season finale for the 2017-18 ski season, Owl's Head was the destination today. I left Sherbrooke at 7am with a temperature of -4 and partly cloudy skies. That didn't last long though as on the way there it quickly clouded over and started snowing along the autoroute by Mont Orford. It started snowing pretty hard at times, but the travelling was good. Arrival at the mountain for 8am with a light snow falling and a temperature of -4. The conditions were more mid winter than spring today. The trails were groomed packed powder over a firm base. 5-7 cms of snow fell overnight which made for a nice coating over the corduroy laid out by the groomers. There were the typical spring season ice patches but nothing to large. The Main, Baby, Black, and Lake Quad chairs were spinning. 27/52 trails at your disposal. Zero wait time at any of the lifts.
The first runs were up the Main Quad to ski a couple of runs on Lilly's Leap and Centennial to Lower Standard. There was a gusty wind riding up to the summit blowing some of the loose powder around.
It was then on to the Black and Lake Quads. More groomed packed powder was on the menu here as well. With the low traffic today the conditions held up really well. Lift lines were non existant. You pretty much had the mountain to yourself today. There were a couple of practice race courses set up on the Kamikaze and the edge of the Lower Standard for the race team. There was plenty of space to ski by these practice areas.
The Chouette under the Black Quad:
Upward Trail under the Lake Quad:
The conditions today were pretty fantastic for this time of year. It was mid-season skiing in April, when normally you would be skiing on soft wet corn snow. There is still quite a bit of snow remaining out there and if you didn't get out there today, you are missing some pretty decent skiing. I skied until 12:30. This visit today had a bit of a different feeling for me. With the news of the new group taking over the reigns, there were a lot of memories that popped in and out of my mind while riding the lifts and skiing these trails today more so than the other times I have been here. I did get to have a lovely chat with Mrs. Lillian Korman while I was there, along with some of my old colleagues and ski patrol friends that are still there after all these years. I took my time looking around the place as there are probably going to be some big plans and changes that will come to Owl's Head in the next little while. You could definitely feel the vibe that change is in the air. I am sure that it will be for the best. Owl's Head was like a second home to me from 1989-2001 while I was employed here. Thank you to Fred and Lillian Korman for all the years of hard work and dedication to providing a beautiful place to ski for all of us to enjoy.
Here are some other scenes from the day: