Monday, January 31, 2011

Panorama from the top of Mt. Sunapee, but there is only one skier in a red jacket

I thought I would enjoy a day of sunny skiing before the two-punch snow storm hits us Tuesday and Wednesday.  Sunapee is an easy 1 hour 40 minute drive so I was able to leave at 7:15 this morning and still get there before 9am.  And home well before dinner. The temps were around 10F at the bottom and 0F at the top.  Thankfully the wind was minimal.

This panorama was done by taking three overlapping images and letting Photoshop do the rest.  Photoshop snapped the three images together and blended the colors so it looks like one image. 

See the two men in red?  Actually there is only one man, but he showed up in both the second image (middle approximately one-third of the pano)  and third image (right one-third of the pano).

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Good morning [6 a.m. snow shot]

We had a bit of a surprise this morning. 

This picture was taken from our front door, with flash, at 6 am this morning

Friday, January 21, 2011

Another day at Cannon

Tyler and I headed up to Cannon yesterday for a nice day of skiing.  The snow was terrific.

Four pictures below, eight pictures here.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Two year olds love birthdays

blowing out candles

cake and ice cream

opening presents

Monday, January 17, 2011

Bag Jump ( at Waterville Valley

While skiing at Waterville last week it was fun to stop to see snowboarders and skiers doing flips in the air and landing in a big air-filled bag. My best guess is that these skiers attend the ski academy at Waterville. Another group was running slalom gates on another slope. I presume they too were ski academy students.

A generator and a couple of fans kept the bag full of air. Skiers/boarders hit one of the two jumps (one smaller than the other), landed on the bag, took their skis or snowboard off, and walked off the rear of the bag. What a great way to learn, while minimizing the risk of injury.

The three images below are a sequence taken in less than 2 seconds.  Basically seeing (1) takeoff, (2) flip and (3) landing.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

I skied Waterville Valley for the first time since 1972

Prompted by my desire to ski this past Friday and seeing that Waterville has 1/2-price tickets on Mondays and Fridays, I decided to give it a go.  I got there in just a few minutes under two hours. The skiing was wonderful; but this was to be expected, as they picked up 16" during the Wednesday storm. 

The mountain is little changed since 1972, though some higher speed chair lifts have been added.  (Two of the original chairs, dating back to the ski area's inception in 1966, are still in operation.)  Below is a photo of one of the old lifts.  This old and slow two-seater services the upper section of the mountain. 

[Back in high school (probably in the spring of 1967) my brother and I drove up to Waterville for a day of spring skiing.  The mountain, as I recall, had previously closed for the season.  But it reopened when the upper mountain received a dump of perhaps two feet of snow.  We skied the upper mountain all day from this lift, and returned to the base lodge at the end of the day by riding down on the lower lift, because there was no snow on the bottom 2/3rds of the mountain!]

I couldn't help comparing Waterville with Canon.  Canon boasts 2,200 feet of vertical drop from a summit of just over 4,000 feet.  Waterville has 2,000 feet of vertical from a summit of 3,850 feet.  My best guess is if you took away Canon's two steepest zoomer trails you would end up with two very comparable ski areas in total trail mileage and degree of difficulty.  The data shows that Waterville has much more acreage, but I think that is because Waterville has wider trails.  Being a much older ski resort, Canon has retained many of the "old fashioned" narrow windy trails.

Perhaps it was because the skiing was so good... and perhaps I am being a bit premature....but I think I might like Waterville even better than Canon.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Doesn't get much better than this

After working in the snow in the morning, it was time to enjoy the gas stove and the porch.  Very cozy and warm, it was.  PLUS, Keurig has come up with a formula for coffee that tastes just like Starbucks, in four flavors. 

Thank you, Caitlin, for a box of "French Roast" K-cups.  Caffeinated, of course. The kitchen even smells like Starbucks when one of these cups is brewing. If there'd been any hope for an afternoon nap, that hope was dashed after a few of these K-cups!

Over a foot of snow by late morning

"Beam me up, Scottie"

Another blizzard

We've decided that today is a good day to "work" from home. The weather forecast is for 12-18" of snow.

So far the snow seems to be of the heavy variety. Snow is sticking to the trees and piling up on the deck hand rail, in spite of the wind.  I hope we do not loose electricity.

This picture was taken about 7am, through the door on the back porch when I went out to start up the gas fireplace. Come on over! The beer should stay nice and cold!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Skied Thursday at Cannon with Tyler

We had a beautiful day of skiing on Thursday.  That's 2-for-1 day!  The lift lines were non-existent and the skiing was nice.  Base temps probably got up to about 20F and perhaps it was about 10F at the top.  But there was NO wind, which is rare for Canon. Below are 4 images.  All 14 can be viewed in larger size here:

Sunday, January 2, 2011

A bit more cross country skiing yesterday, before the snow melted

Laurie and I got a chance to ski together yesterday.  We went to Toll Field in Carlisle to get some exercise before the temperatures got too high.  (Laurie found out this morning that the temperature got as high as 61F locally, yesterday.)  By staying around the perimeter of the field we were able to avoid the rocky trails in the woods.  So even where the grass was showing through the thinning snow cover, it was nevertheless wet enough to allow us to ski right over the grass without sticking.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

I skied a couple of hours in Estabrook Woods yesterday

The trails were pretty beaten up, as it had been 5 days since the first and only snowstorm this year.  But that has to be expected on multi-use conservation land like Estabrook Woods.  The trail has to be shared by cross country skiers, snowshoers, and dog walkers.  Here are a few pictures

I think I was the lone skier coming in from the Carlisle side of the woods.

Generally, it is expected that skiers will stay to one side of the trail (tracks on the left) and snowshoers to the other side (tracks seen here on the right).  Those walking should stay in the middle, but usually walk wherever they want, making some big holes in the ski track.  This section was in pretty good shape because it was further into the woods.

Lots of sun yesterday!

The main part of the trail was an old dirt road at one time.  It was the route taken by the Minutemen walking from Chelmsford and Carlisle to the North Bridge in Concord to fight the British.