Thar she blows!

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Blue Whale off the port bow cap’n! A cut-off low in the Bight, tis truly a snow-fiends delight, ah-har me hearties!

The Frog’s forecast is looking mighty good for Friday 5th of August onwards, & this MRF 9 day forecast is the stuff powder dreams are made of!

Let’s Dorb!

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A few random links i found buried in the data drifts of mt. Cyberspace…

Let’s Dorb! A weird & whacky blog I found via snowjapan.com, by a Gaijin crew boarding & skiing around Japan. The videos have some great wide-angle snow shennanigans blended with snippets from japanese tv shows, & are nicely edited to some groovy tunes. Inspiring stuff – I think we need to lift our game!
www.pigstarproductions.com

A very amusing video about ski resorts in the USA banning snowboarders, way back in 1985.
Extreme Sports: Faster, Riskier, More Outrageous

An important message regarding roadside safety in the snow…
Reporter on a snowy road

Brad’s Thredbo Report for 14-17/7/05

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Thursday
We meet at our secret meeting place to give our boards a good waxing and the attention they deserve. Coupled with beer and a scotch chaser, we make our offerings to the Snow Gods.

Friday
We set off at around 8:45 PM after a long days work.

It was a mad rush to get the Subaru packed (otherwise known as the “Board Caddy” mobile) we hit the M5 and I do my usual dodging of the trafic islands because I always forget the right exits. I finally make it to the long road to Canberra, then Cooma then Jindy. We arrive 2:30 PM at TFSL and hit the hay as soon as possible. I get the fart, I mean, bunk room but I couldn’t care less at that time in the morning.

Saturday
The Teenage Mutant Powder Ranger awakens us at the brisk time of 6:55 AM. This is late actually, in “Snowboard-Boot Camp” hours. We make it up to the slopes by about 0930 and we instantly hit the Gunbarrel Quad. It doesn’t take long before we are separated and I find myself just taking Antons and Sponars for a early morning spin on my own. To my surprise I was getting some beautiful, dry, cold, board spanking freshies and lots of drift in the pockets. Yum! These two T-Bars are the picks for the weekend for me. If you have access to a T-Bar like this in the morning, I highly recommend it! :) Except, if only the wind wasn’t blowing 100kph and picking chunks of ice up and whipping me in the face! How I cannot stress more the imperitiveness of all-body protection in these conditions.

I then made my way to the Kosi-Quad, but the Supertrail was more like the Sooty-Trail so I decided to go back to Antons. I thought I’d take Snowgums because the Kosi was so packed, but this was a bad idea! After about a 20 minute chairlift, it got me to Black Sally’s Kiosk but that’s about it. Not quite high enough for Sponars. So I had to do the old unclip and hike trick. I finally made the long traverse to Sponars, then Antons and funily enough just in time to meet back up with Tim and Jim in the line at the bottom of Antons.

The rest of the day the blizzard got worse but we braved the cold and finished the day off with a pizza, spa, sauna and beer back at the lodge. Tim and Pab were very disappointed there wasn’t a fooseball table in the games room. There are now two airhocky tables, both are extremely loud so we left to find ourselves some wombat holes and watch the snow softly falling in the night. After waxing the boards again and stinking out the lodge with the love-or-hate smell of burning wax, we had a scotch for a nitecap and hit the sack.

Sunday
0630 hours. The “No Friends on Powder Day” rule was in effect. After arriving at the Thredbo carpark We jumped the first bus to Crackenback! The weather report was saying 5cm snowfall overnight, but the cars outside were saying at least 10cm! This was looking good! Our first ride up the Kosi-Quad we knew this was virgin snow. Only to see our dreams tracked out within a couple of seconds. Still, there was pow to be had everywhere, straight down the middle or through the trees – it didn’t matter! A first for me!

We also had a few excellent off-piste runs, getting partially buried in powder in parts which made me wish I’d been to the gym more often. After which we had lunch and then proceeded to Merrits to have a few Cruisers.

We met at the pub in Fridays Flat at 4:00 PM and then after slipping in quick sauna and spa back at the lodge we started on the long road back to Sydney. Of course stopping off for an Italian Veggie Burger at the Cooma Pizza-House (with the lady and her strips of ripped foolscap on the counter and her chaotic ordering system). As well as doing the traditional ‘slide upside down on your back on the spiral slippery slide’ outside the Cooma DSS. We all made it home safely to be in bed by 1 AM for about 6 hours sleep and then back to work! Another fantastic low pressure chaser, and a great start to the snow season!

Bradley Wong.

Jim’s Thredbo Report for 16-17/7/05

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Photos only – text & movies coming later!

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Ski Lake Jindy

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A lovely photo found online by Owen Lansbury.
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Amy’s Thredbo Report for 9-10/7/05

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Craig will send out some pictures tomorrow, I’m sure. There’s was powder everywhere.. it was falling 40k BEFORE cooma on the highway. I’m glad we took the bus instead of fighting the roads and getting bogged. We saw heaps of cars off the road including an overturned one. They closed the road between Cooma and Jindy, but let the buses through. We were greeted in Jindy by a town-wide blackout. This went on until 5pm the next night or so. The lifts were running at thredbo though, so there was no reason to complain. =)

My first tracks of the season were actually riding in the hill in the backyard of snowy valley. The worst bit about Saturday was getting bogged in the powder at the bowl in thredbo. That left me tired and exhausted, but still it was definitely worth it to get up there this weekend. Even if I only managed a handful of runs each day. I’d give this weekend a big thumbs up.

Amy Ryan

Craig’s Thredbo Report for 9-10/7/05

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Yea the last minute mission onto the ozsnow bus was well worth it. Fresh dry powder all Saturday, with even more that night!

Pic is Thredbo middle bar on Sunday morning, Where I spent the day at the pub after minor spine injury on Saturday :| Looks like much more good snow weather on the way too.

;)

Craig Gunson

Powder-burgers for lunch

Derek’s Thredbo Report for 9-10/7/05

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Godzilla Takes a Dump on Thredbo

We checked the Thredbo cameras on Friday at 3.00pm. Decent cover up top, brown fields down the bottom with a miserable little trail of artificial snow leading to the bottom of the Crackenback chair. Not looking too good. Earlier in the week I’d run back to my old place (I’d just moved house and left all my snow gear behind) to pick up my little 153 board anticipating the dreaded “Thredbo concrete with a dusting” routine that the Frog had predicted. We all know that horrible scraping noise as you turn and your board suddenly decides to go about 20kph faster than your ass and you shortly thereafter find out how strong your coccyx/wrist/skull really is. I’ve got a baby due early August so this was the only weekend for the season for me.

During the drive on Friday night we were greeted by snow at Bredbo, some 50kms on the Canberra side of Cooma. Know that weird little pancake joint in Bredbo? Well, there were people putting chains on across the road. That’s the first time I’d seen that happen since I first started riding Thredbo in 1998. And this must’ve been around 11pm. As we got closer to Cooma, the snow was of the massive cornflake sized variety. Excited is hardly the word. And we weren’t the only ones. There were several cars bolting to Jindy from Sydney and Canberra, most totally unprepared for what was about to happen.

It absolutely puked the rest of the way to the lodge. From Bredbo all the way up. A lot of snow from below 800m. At the Cooma servo around midnight there was a queue of people to the door from the register. As the road iced up the scenery resembled a weird video game as drivers pulled up all over the place as cars started sliding, people atttempting to fit chains, refit them etc or just plain gave up. There were a LOT of utes just parked by the side of the road, and even a few 4WDs (some rather new and expensive ones too). Even Tom’s trusty 81 Rangie with narrow tyres (officially a classic next year Tom reckons) started to
lose grip at one stage. We drove through a blacked-out Jindy. We pulled into the snow covered lodge about 2.30am, the lodge also being blacked out. We barely got the gate open by using rugby tackles to bash through all the snow around it.

Saturday morning we compared notes with others in the lodge – the snow had started dumping at about 3pm Friday at Thredbo, a car had rolled on the road (someone said that there was actually a death involved) causing a 2-4 hour total standstill on the Alpine Way. Between 3pm Friday and 8am Saturday 65cm had landed, the largest overnight dump since 1987. On the drive up to the mountain we passed more abandoned cars including the car that had rolled and a Merc wagon that had almost slid right off the
road down the creek embankment.

We caught one of the opening lifts and enjoyed a ride straight under the chairlift over, through and under 2 foot of fresh. The brown tracts of mountain were all blanketed now. For some weird reason, the freak weather that had produced all that snow also produced a very warm morning, and though the pow was lovely and dry up Karels and Basin it got progressively heavier below Kareela Hutt. Boarders were doing nose dives anywhere remotely flat! And digging yourself out while overheating, goggles fogging up, use the Force Luke….yes, riding 2 foot on a 153 cm deck is bloody hard work in those conditions, not that
I’m complaining mind you…

By 10.00am we were stuffed from riding the Bluff and the supertrail, the pick of the turns being the high section off Karels above Golf Course but then the ride through Golf Course was just a chopped heavy pow nightmare to get back. At about 11.00am it started getting properly cold. It just kept snowing. For the afternoon Basin of all places actually yielded the best runs, there was no-one there, we could pretty much pick a fresh line every run through dry powder. Back at the lodge we learned that anyone in non-4WD vehicles weren’t able to leave the lodge until 1.00pm due to the amount of snow on the drive. I’m sure SOME
desperados made it out though. With 2 foot of fresh you’d just find a way…

Saturday night meant another 20cm as the Wallabies showed the Springboks how to move a ball round a field and it was nice and cold in the morning meaning drier pow, less effort, more speed and bigger smiles. Despite being school holidays there was hardly anyone at Thredbo all morning. Unbelievable luck. Plus the groomers had done their work the night before so the trail was super smooth with the new pow sitting on top of the smooth base. Yum, kinda like Niseko but, um, not as dry and, er, not
as much snow. I don’t remember the Supertrail piste ever being this much fun (except on last years’ Top to Bottom race practice runs heh heh). Of course we had to track up the trees as well…

Judging by the forecast,anyone going this weekend would be well advised to set your bindings back, pack some chains, some garden gloves to put the chains on, a torch, a powderskirt, some driving patience, a strong back thigh, a long board or even a Fish! Enjoy it cos I won’t be there and it looks like a bloody good forecast!

Derek Chan

Snow at the lodge 1
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Snow at the lodge 2
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Dan’s Thredbo Report for 2-3/7/05

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Dan Copping, Lord of the Dry Slope back in Olde Blighty, with the first LPL report for 2005

Got back from Thredbo late Sunday night. As predicted there wasn’t too much snow on the lower levels, in fact they were transporting snow in wheelbarrows on ‘Friday Flat’ just to keep it open. Higher up on ‘Merrits’ was much better than I could have hoped for. There was enough fresh or blown on snow to save me from the worse injuries as I attempted to learn to snowboard. Sunday was a different story, my friend Paul equated it to slippery concrete …he wasn’t too far wrong. Two of our group broke their wrists that afternoon! Saying all that I had a fantastic weekend and it may not have been perfect conditions but that didn’t spoil the fun. I would recommend Oz Snow Adventures to anyone, very cheap and great if you are heading down on your own as you get to meet loads of people. I’m now planning my next trip!

Dan

Stranded…

I started a “caption this” thread using this image ski.com.au – some of the captions are quite funny, check em out here –
Topic: caption this

Local Knowledge Bloggage

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A few links to keep you thinking those cold thoughts.

There’s nothing quite like a bit of local knowledge when it comes to snow conditions. New for this season, ski.com.au have added a blog section on their snow reports page – I’ve been reading the Thredbo Blog & the Perisher Blog since the start of the season, & the quality of reporting is excellent.

Also, Richard’s Report is well worth a read, & always includes some very informative photos.

No matter what goes wrong on your next ski trip, think yourself lucky you’re not skiing at one of these Ski Resorts From Hell!!

Thredbo in the old days – some lovely photos from 1964.

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