A fellow adventurer invited myself and a friend out for our first tour of the year. There is around 30″ of snow as of November 19th at 7000′ feet in Southern Oregon. We toured the smoother slopes of Mt Ashland before they opened. The fresh mountain air is a reset for my foggy valley brain. There is something about the crispness to it that just washes it clean.
We skinned up from the parking lot in a b-line to the summit adding a couple switchbacks to ease into the day with our fresh touring legs. Man! It feels good to be out on the mountain. We dropped in from the summit on our first run down the northern aspect and got a good run with a few trees poking out here and there. Making the trek back up we dropped into a more northeast facing aspect hugging the trees on the right of the slope and reaping the smooth windloaded goodness.
Lap three we dropped in again from the NOAA radar station heading southeast along the ridge. Dropping in above the Widsor chair, we were awarded with more great turns all the way to the loading area following our same “just skiers left of the trees” motto. Skinning back up to the truck and grabbing a local beer at Caldera Brewery (call them about their case deals before you leave Ashland!).
It’s 2 days later and the temp is 52F up there… So I guess we hit it! I read the Mt Bachelor area has the same warm weather moving through. SnoTel, Annie Springs, near Crater Lake, shows the snowpack consolidating and the temps just above freezing. Let’s pray that this winter stays cold and we get a good precip stream from a cold Pacific Ocean.