Confessions at Solitude Mountain Resort
on January 11, 2008
These were my thoughts as we stared at what was our third untracked line in the Cathedral area at Solitude Mountain Resort. My introspective thoughts gave way to burst of "waaaahhoooo" as I subsequently dropped into yet another untracked line of knee to thigh deep blower pow. And all of this with no overnight snow following an "all time top 10 powder day" according to my longtime buddy Erik Seo. Thankfully there was more mountain than skiers and we were cleaning up.
From Powder Horn lift to the Summit lift via Parachute we found deep untracked lines with other pockets of 3-10 turns rewarding our search for pow. But it wasn't like we really had to search that much. Rather, one just needs to open their eyes and the stashes were everywhere. Littered with rocks and cliffs the Parachute and adjacent Milk Run area was a great place to start things off.
Once on the Summit lift you get a good overview of the goods. On the lookers Milk Run, Parachute, Middle Slope and then the Cathedral appear as you are riding up. To your far left is Evergreen (hard to miss with the tree lined chutes and a healthy spattering of cliffs) which is accessed by a small hike and to the immediate left is the Headwall Forest.
From the top of the Summit lift you get an eye popping view of Honeycomb Canyon and the endless options there. We opted to maximize lap potential on the Summit lift but despite the couple dozen people headed out the traverse on Honeycomb they couldn't have skied it out if they had a week.
We dropped into the front side traverse from the top of the Summit chair and alternated laps between the Cathedral (go up on this traverse) and the Headwall Forest (go down from this traverse). Put simply, deep untracked ultra light powder was found, rocks and cliffs were hucked, WOOT's were heard, poles were clicked and smiles were contagious. Rolling into the Summit chair each time there might have been one person in front of us but instant gratification was the name of the game.
I guess truth in advertising is for real with Solitude with catchy lines like "Thier ignorance is your bliss" and "If you only knew".
I'm certain that it won't be another 3 years until I visit the Cathedral area of Solitude again. I confess, it'll be more like 3 days or 3 weeks max.