Results tagged “Skiing” from Kazza the Blank One

This time I really did!  But more on that later.

So it all started at drinks on Thursday night.  Steve and Simon asked if I wanted to go to the snow on the weekend.  I said sure, so long as my planned upgrade on Friday arvo went ok.

Well Friday arvo came along and my upgrade went badly.  Really badly.  Beg for help from *real* comms guys to help fix badly.  But the worst part was knowing that Steve was waiting for me.  I tried and tried and tried to get them to go without me, but they wouldn't so I just got more and more stressed.  It was an awful awful night.  Then I was so flustered I forgot the cable for my GPS, and I thought I'd left the Android at work, when turns out I'd actually left it at home.  So I pretty much lost it.  Fortunately the sweetie found the Android and was able to hack portals to keep my Sojourner badge going.  Phew.  But the GPS not being chargable really sucked.  It did the whole first day and til about 10:30 the second.  Sadmaking.

I was so stressed I couldn't eat anything on the way down Friday night, so I didn't actually have any dinner.  I think I would have thrown it up if I'd tried.  (and a very meat-heavy lunch certainly didn't help).  Woke up about 1am hungry, but got through it.

We stayed at a guy from work's place.  $30/night for an apartment in Jindabyne.  Pretty awesome value.  And I woke up naturally both mornings - much better than being woken up at 4am and being a zombie most of the morning.

So onto the snow.

It was very warm, and the snow was quite slushy in the morning, and even worse in the afternoon.

Day one we started at Front Valley, headed over to Mount P for a couple of runs, then I left the boys and did Pleasant Valley, then Guthega, then back to Blue Cow for lunch.  After lunch we did Roller Coaster, up Ridge, Excelerator, then by myself again Summit, back across to Pleasant Valley, Copperhead Road, Pretty Valley, Interceptor, then back to Telemark and done for the day.

Olympic from Mount P
Olympic from Mount P

Riding the Mount P triple
Snow groupie

Main ranges from near the top of Mount P
Main ranges from Mount P

Pleasant Valley
Pleasant Valley

Riding the Pleasant Valley quad
Pleasant Valley skis

Main ranges from Guthega
Main ranges from Guthega

Guthega Pondage
Guthega Pondage

Milk and pie.  Don't even talk to me about how much sodium is in that thing.
Pie and milk

Obligatory selfie
Selfie

Day two we started at Smiggins, headed across via Interceptor to Roller Coaster, then I left the boys and went down to Guthega, back to Blue Cow, Pleasant Valley (the GPS conked out at this point), over to Mount P, back up and down the Quad Express.  At this point I thought I'd aim for the top of Telemark to go down that way back to Smiggins (from Mid station), but I must have taken a wrong turn somehow I got stuck somewhere I really didn't want to be - possibly in Wine Glass.  I got part way down and there was pretty much nowhere to go.  I had to take my skis off to get down.  Which really mucked around with my confidence.  I trudged back to Smiggins and collapsed in the cafe for lunch.  After three quarters of an hour I felt better again so did some runs in Smiggins while waiting for the boys to get back.  Was there for well over an hour an a half waiting and doing the same few runs.  Whoops.  

Ridge quad
Ridge quad

I told you several times this view never gets old for me
Main ranges from Guthega

Happy Valley from Mount P
Happy Valley from Mount P

A bit after three I found a nice spot under a tree to sit and watch the world go by.  And I built a snowman.  Only a little one.  But kinda cute.

Olaf

Taking a photo on my phone and the battery gave out and it turned off.  hrmm no way to contact the boys.  So cleared some space on random camera (it was full) and got some photos on it.  Then headed down to see if I could find electricity, or at least wait at the bar.  Turns out the boys had just gotten there, so that was good timing.

Went back to the apartment to tidy up and pack up, then came home.

Took ages to sort out the GPS tracks.  I did fifty runs according to the Perisher dashboard.  Day one I covered fifty five kilometres up and down.  Day two nineteen kilometres before the battery died.

Fun times.  But my everything hurts.

Snow 2015

Snow 2015

So I had "Do you wanna build a snow man?" in my head all day Saturday.

Yup, I went to the snow.  But I didn't build a snowman.  I was too busy skiing.

Steve picked me up at 5:10am but then we had to go back a bit cause Ray had forgotten his snowboard boots.  Ski Co in Cooma was a bit crowded but got in and out fairly quickly since I had my paperwork from last time and said just get me the same stuff.  But maccas was too busy so I didn't get the breakfast I was counting on.  And I was starving.  And you shouldn't talk to me when I have low blood sugar like that.  Hmmmm.

I was almost too grumpy to take this photo of a fogbow.

Fogbow

But then we phoned through to Mountain Munchies in Jindabyne so I could order a big brekkie roll pickup.  So that worked well.  And it was it pretty good too.

Big brekkie roll

Hacked a few portals while trying to get through the bottleneck that is the intersection of Barry Way and Kosciuszko Road.  Still own them too, four days later.

So got to the snow around nineish.  Dumped my beanie and both jumpers in the car - it was that hot even before I started for the day. 

I had a fantastic day.  Started at front valley then over to Blue Cow and did Pleasant Valley and Roller Coaster and Excelerator and the summit and then over to Guthega.  Had the longest wait of the day at the bottom of the Blue Calf T Bar, so didn't go back there.  But had a few great runs there, including a couple I'd never done before.  Was heading up Blue Cow T Bar for another run when it broke down.  Waited for a while there but then decided to give up on it and have lunch.  Had a pie at the little kiosk they'd setup at the top of the Car Park Double.  So then I was going to head to Freedom to get out, but the Blue Cow T opened up again so had another couple of runs there before heading all the way back to Perisher for Pretty Valley, Interceptor and Happy Valley.  At 4pm I could have met up with Steve and Ray or had another couple of runs, but my knees were starting to really ache.  I'm getting old!!  So we had a couple of beers and they went down a treat :)

Definitely felt like I had a lot more confidence this trip which was good.  Maybe I'll even tackle more runs on Mt P one day ..

Pleasant Valley - my favourite run
Pleasant Valley

Me on the Pleasant Valley Quad
Me on Pleasant Valley Quad

Moguls next to Excelerator
Moguls

From the summit looking back to Blue Cow
Looking across to Blue Cow

From Blue Cow looking across to the summit
Looking back to the Summit

Dam at Guthega Pondage
Dam at Guthega Pondage

This view of Mt Kosciuszko and the main ranges never gets old for me.  Love it.
Mt Kosciuszko and the Main Ranges

Obligatory selfie
Selfie

My phone battery pretty much died by lunch time so no piccies in the afternoon.

I also carted the GPS around, but I'd forgotten to charge it from after my last Sydney trip.  So it started complaining of low battery at 1pm-ish.  But it soldiered on and made it til almost 4pm, finally conking out half way up my last t-bar.  I also realised I hadn't downloaded it from two Sydney trips.  It can hold quite a lot of data in memory!  Love that little thing.

Skiing Map

During the week a cold front swept over southern Australia, bringing with it a massive dumping of snow at Perisher.  So Peter decided to stay an extra day, and we headed down again yesterday.

Unfortunately the rest of Canberra decided to do the same thing.

Traffic through Jindabyne was a nightmare, and we didn't get on snow til 9:50am :(

But there was indeed a *heap* of fresh snow.  In fact more than I've ever dealt with before, so I actually found it a bit tricky!  Nothing like Australian snowy mountains to have completely different conditions every time I go skiing!!

I stuck with my mission to continue to try new runs and lifts for the GPS track.  I did Mount P for a good chunk of the morning (too much powdery snow - hard!).  Did Guthega and Bluecow in the afternoon, heading back to finish up at Smiggins - staying til last lifts on Burke at 5pm.

We stopped for pies in Jindy (it's tradition!), dumped out stuff at Cooma, and made it home around 8:30pm.


Was surprised to see the mountains coming into Jindabyne - was actually expecting clouds to be covering them
Snow August
So much snow!  Dainer's Gap
Snow August
The crowds!  Perisher was full when this was taken at 9:14am.  Good thing we were planning on stopping at Smiggins anyway!
Snow August
Peter and me riding Link T-bar.  Probably the only lift we rode together all day!
Snow August
So much snow!  On Link T-bar
Snow August
Pretty Valley chair
Snow August
I made it back to Mount P after a several year absence
Snow August
You can't really see it, but the cars are parked all the way back along the road!
Snow August
Lunch - pizza pie!! and a vanilla malt milk
Snow August
I love this view from Bluecow terminal
Snow August
Heading over to Guthega I was following these borders, and passed a sign that said skiiers/borders left, snow vehicles right.  I was following the borders to the right.  Whoops.  I think this was the "middle traverse" which I'd gotten onto by mistake in 2007.  So when the borders headed left off the track down to the lower trail I followed them.  And nearly died!  Those two feet of fresh snow?  They were right there.  Untouched.  Soft and waiting to be fallen into.  Fortunately I managed to stop myself without stacking it before regaining control and just going straight ahead to the lower trail.
Snow August
My pole sunk a good foot into the soft snow, and when I pulled it out it had a core sample attached
Snow August
I never get tired of this view of the main ranges from Guthega
Snow August
I followed the home trail at Guthega, and got to go up another lift I'd never been on - the carpark lift
Snow August
Another view from the carpark lift at Guthega
Snow August
It was starting to cloud over in the afternoon, so couldn't see Kosciuszko
Snow August
Border jumping at Pleasant Valley
Snow August
Empty - it was after 5pm after all!
Snow August

And here's my GPS track of the day.
Made it to all sections of the resort this time.
25 lift/t-bar/carpet rides.  Didn't bother to count the blue vs green - since a couple of the runs turned into each other.  But did go to a few new places and runs that I'd never done before.  The only repeats were the t-bar at Guthega, Pleasant Valley Quad, and Cook J-bar and Burke T-bar at Smiggins at the end of the day.  Otherwise I basically didn't repeat anything!  Gotta love that about Perisher! :)

Skiing GPS track
So a pretty awesome day really :):)

Skiing August

| | Comments (0)
With Peter down, it was decided we should make a pilgrimage to the snow.  The only day that was really going to work was yesterday.  Unfortunately the weather was not in agreement.  Very high winds closed most of the lifts, leaving long queues at the T-bars.  Most of Bluecow was shut down and don't even know about Guthega.  So the morning was spent at Perisher on front and centre valleys, and the afternoon was spent at Smiggins.  

It took us *forever* to get up the mountain too, as they were forcing chain fittings just before Smiggins (Steve has an all-wheel-drive so at least we didn't have to do that).  So didn't get on the snow til 9:50am.

The morning was snowy and very cloudy, so terrible visibility from having goggles covered in snow and melted snow as well as no contrast.  The afternoon was basically hailing - little balls of very solid snow/ice.  So the day was pretty miserable.  But it did clear a bit later in the afternoon, with visibility much better, so actually enjoyed the last couple of hours.

Red in the morning, shepherd's warning?
Snow August
Snow August
I couldn't find the others at lunch so sat by myself and pretended to have something a bit healthy.
Snow August
Barely took any photos of the snow - it was too much effort to take off gloves.

This was on one of the t-bars at Smiggins in the afternoon.  It had cleared somewhat by this point so doesn't show how miserable it was.
Snow August
Snow August
After a few good runs in the afternoon I was much happier about the day, and this beer went down well
Snow August
Stopped at the bakery in Jindy for pies, then headed home and collapsed into bed about 8:30pm

Today discovered that the GPS turned itself off at lunch time.  Don't know if the sudden change in temperature/humidity after lunch confused it, or if it got switched off by accident.  Who knows.  But it would have been pretty boring anyway with only Perisher in the morning and Smiggins in the afternoon, so no huge loss (other than not knowing how many runs I did since some of the lifts don't have RFID on them).

Skiing July

| | Comments (1)
During our team meeting on Thursday I was complaining about people who didn't respond to emails or meeting invites.  Since one of the meetings was for Friday, but I still didn't have response for it, Steve said "come to the snow".  So I did!  Postponed the meeting til Monday (in which case I'll *still* probably have to call the guy and say "do you want any help with this project or not?").

So up at stoopid o'clock (just before 5am).  Dozed in the car but didn't really sleep.  Picked up gear at Cooma and had Scottish Restaurant for breakfast.

We parked at Smiggins, but still had a hike to the ticket office.  Got myself sorted and was on the snow at 9am.

It was an awesome day for it.  Good snow (although a little thin in places) and glorious sunny skies.  In fact I had to take my beanie and eventually gloves off because it was just too hot.  Queues weren't too bad in most places - only a couple that I had to wait more than a couple of minutes for (Ridge Quad and Happy Valley T).  

Lunch was at Blue Cow at 12pm, and was surprisingly uncrowded (probably because most people were outside enjoying the sunshine).  Left a bit after 4:30pm.

Blue Cow Terminal from Side Saddle
Blue Cow terminal from Side Saddle
Main Ranges from Guthega Peak
Main ranges from Guthega Peak
The last time I did Norwegian Trail at Guthega was in 1999 and I didn't see the dam, presumably because of trees in the way.  So was quite surprised when I saw it this time.
Guthega Pondage
Riding a T-Bar in Guthega
On a T-bar at Guthega
Blue Cow Terminal from Blue Cow High Traverse
Blue Cow terminal from Blue Cow High Traverse
Last time I was at the snow I had the GPS with me, and recorded a pretty cool track for the day.  This year I decided to cover as much of the resort as possible, and go on as many different lifts and runs as I could.  I did pretty well, not repeating too much, but didn't get to Mount P.  Oh well - next time!

Skiing GPS track
Twenty eight lift/t-bar rides, twenty green runs, nine blue runs (although some of them were mixed up a bit).  44.6 kilometres covered on skis (includes lifts).  And I didn't fall over at all.  Awesome day :):)

Skiing July

| | Comments (2)
24th July saw me getting up at stoopid o'clock to head down to the snow with Steve and Alan W.

It snowed pretty much the whole day, which meant for super awesome snow all day, but not great visibility, made worse by goggles that kept steaming up and had heaps of blind spots around the edges.  So a little frustrating and it meant I went a lot slower than my normally slow speed.

Skiing July
Heading up the Interceptor Quad
Skiing July
Another shot from the Interceptor Quad
Skiing July
Snowflakes!!
Skiing July
Heading up the very pretty Ridge Quad.  Unfortunately as I was taking these photos, I dropped a glove :(  This was above Excelerator.  I really didn't want to do Excelerator as it's very steep, but alas I had to retrieve it.  Steve and Alan got there first and got it for me, but it was in a non-groomed bit so it was very icy and I stacked while trying to stop with them.  Got a big bruise on my leg to show for it.
Skiing July
The ice on the trees was pretty cool.  And this isn't even a lot - many other trees had heaps more ice.
Skiing July
From Side Saddle looking across to Blue Cow terminal.  I had my other stack of the day down the bottom nearish the lift.
Skiing July
Looking from Blue Cow terminal across to Summit.  Had lunch of a few snacks and just sat down for half an hour to recover from my morning.
Skiing July
More pretty snow on the trees
Skiing July
Looking down to Perisher resort
Skiing July

I don't think I've ever seen Lake Jindabyne so full!
Lake Jindabyne


Yesterday I had a play with the GPS track I took of the day.  It was super cool!  I took 17 lift rides (actually that reminds me, I need to create an account so I can look at the MyRide stats - ski passes are now all RFID and you swipe past them as you get on the lift, so you can see all your stats).  I did 15 green runs (although a decent chunk of those were the very easy Pleasant Valley) and 3 blue runs.  Next time I go I'm going to make much more of an effort to go on different runs and lifts all over the resort to make the GPS track look even better :)

Skiing July GPS track

Snow, take two!

| | Comments (0)
It wasn't on the plan to go skiing two weekends in a row - but the trip a week ago had actually been planned for a week prior.  And this one was pre-paid, so I couldn't get out of it.  Which considering how sick I was on Friday was not such a good thing.  So I went along, thinking I'd have to take it easy as I doubted I'd be able to breathe.

Got up at the same time, had a bit of breakfast, and Steve gave me a lift to the bus stop.  Coach was a little delayed, and got progressively more delayed as we waited for people.  We got to Bullock's Flat just before nine o'clock, however we arrived just after all the other coaches.  So it was absolute chaos in the rental shop.  They rushed us through getting boots, then we stood for forty minutes queuing for skis.  It was an absolute nightmare, I'll definitely not be doing that again.  I'll do what I've done previously - drive myself, have brekky in Cooma, hire gear in Cooma or Jindabyne and rock up all casual like for an early Ski Tube.  

So managed to get on the 10am Ski Tube and went straight up to Blue Cow where I went and got breakfast.  I figured if I had breakfast at 10:30am I wouldn't need to stop for lunch.  (Steve caught the 9:20 Ski Tube)

Ski Tube
Ski Tube

Had a couple of runs on Pleasant Valley by myself, then down Roller Coaster and up the Ridge Quad, where I met up with Steve and Al.  Did a couple of runs each on Side Saddle and Zali's.  Then they went off to get some lunch, and I went back to Pleasant Valley to get my confidence back (which I lost a bit on those scary blue runs ;) ).

Pleasant Valley lift
Pleasant Valley
Top of Pleasant Valley
Top of Pleasant Valley

Met up with Steve and Al again and we did Pleasant Valley and Roller Coaster and Side Saddle and I think Zali's again.  Then we did Excelerator (!)  Managed to do well enough until right near the bottom where I stacked it in front of the lift queues - doh!!  That was my fourth and final stack of the day, so didn't do too badly.

Al and Steve on Summit Quad
Al and Steve
Blue Cow
Blue Cow
Steve at the top of Excelerator
Steve

So then meandered our way back through Blue Cow, Pleasant Valley, Copperhead Road, up the Pretty Valley lift and back down to Front Valley.  By this time it was nearly 4pm and they wanted us on the 4:12 Ski Tube back down, so I called it a day.  

Front Valley
Front Valley
So the day actually was pretty good after a grumpy start.  I got boots that were the same make as last week, and in fact a size smaller (25.5 instead of 26.5) and yet these ones weren't as uncomfortable as the ones last week which really hurt my legs where they squeezed tight around my lower legs.  Didn't spend as long on the snow, but then didn't get as exhausted either.  The conditions were a lot better, although that meant the snow wasn't as good - getting slushy in places and icy in others.  This and last weekend were the first times I'd ever been to the snow on a weekend - I've always only gone midweek before.  But the queue lengths weren't really any worse.  The Ridge Quad late morning had a ten minute wait, but everything else was quite quick.

Coach ride back was pretty uneventful, and even managed to doze a little - after my coughing fit.  For some reason I didn't cough too much during the day, and didn't feel short of breath either - go figure!  It did catch up with me somewhat yesterday day though.  Starting to feel better now finally.
4:25am my alarm went off yesterday morning.  After only managing four hours sleep - urghh!

Got ready and went and picked up Steve, then went to Nat and Andrew's to swap cars.  Got away at 5:15 from their place.  Arrived at 6:35 at Cooma where we went and hired our gear.  It was really cheap - $38 for my skis/boots/poles, minus a 10% discount that Steve could get us.  Although the boots were a bit loose around my feet and really really tight around my legs (my legs still hurt from the pressure!).  Dropped into The Scottish Restaurant to pick up some takeaway brekkie but had to wait about fifteen minutes in the queue :/  Got away from there at 7:30.

Coming into Jindabyne.
Lake Jindabyne
Arrived in Jindabyne at 8:10 where we got our lift passes.  Then headed up the mountain.  We were going to Perisher and it was cheaper to pay the park entrance ($27 for the car) than four lots of $27 for the ski tube.  But the cost of that was an incredibly slow drive up the mountain.  We couldn't get Nat and Andrew into the morning lessons, but that was probably a good thing, as we wouldn't have made it in time.  As it was, we made the 9:34 Ski Tube up to Blue Cow.

Nat and me on the Ski Tube

So we get out of the train and the whole place is just white.  Snow white.  Air white.  Couldn't really see a thing.  On a lighter note at least the snow was really good!  Just couldn't see it!

We went to the really flat bit just above Blue Cow and tried to teach Andrew the snow plough :)  Did a bit of going up and down around there, then had a couple of goes on the early starter slope.  So for Steve and me it was a pretty easy morning.  Had a slightly early lunch then Nat and Andrew went off for lessons.

We had a couple of goes on Pleasant Valley - which I normally hoon down, but there was so little contrast I was going really hesitantly.  

Pleasant Valley lift
Pleasant Valley lift

Then we had a go at Roller Coaster, which for some reason I've never been on before.  This run was under the cloud line and has an amazingly pretty view.  I was pretty hesitant the first go, but later on we came back to it and I went a bit faster.  The top bit really is like a roller coaster - very cool.

View on Roller Coaster

Did the Ridge Quad to do Zali's a couple of times and the Summit Quad to do Side Saddle.

Steve on the Ridge Quad
Steve on the lift

View on the Ridge Quad
Ridge Quad

Ridge Quad
Heading for the clouds on the Ridge Quad
Ridge Quad
At 3pm we met up with Nat and Andrew who had finished their lessons and had a few small runs with them on Early Starter.  They'd improved enormously with their lesson.  Then we left them to have a couple of runs by themselves with the plan for them to catch the Ski Tube down to Perisher and we'd ski across.  

So we did Pleasant Valley, Copperhead Road (I'd forgotten now long that run is!) and up Pretty Valley lift.  Took me ages to find my way across to the top of Front Valley cause I'd basically forgotten where I was from last time.  Eventually found it though.  Had a couple of runs on Front Valley before finally heading back to the car just after 5pm.

Front Valley
Made our way back to Cooma to return our ski gear and pick up some Maccas for dinner.  And home about quarter to nine.

Had a lot of fun.  Fell over a few times, the most frustrating on Zali's cause it was quite steep and the snow was really slippery, so took ages to get myself up again.  Steve was very patient with me though, waiting at the bottom of each run for me :)  Pretty crap conditions, but really good snow quality.  Aching quite a bit from the traversing.  

And I'm doing it all again this Saturday.  I must be insane! ;)

Snow

| | Comments (0)
Would blog.  Too tired.
Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

Kazza the Blank One home