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    Rico in AZ

    I’ve actually been sitting on this since mid-February thinking we were going to get more snow from the much hyped El Nino. At the time I meant for this to be a mid-season report. Well, the snow didn’t happen.
    I was going to get all philosophical and shit; like how every time I write this report it seems like I’m writing a eulogy, about the fleeting nature of winter, blah blah blah….
    But fuck that. Nobody wants to hear that.

    A friend was just saying how we don’t get full seasons here anymore. Just half seasons, if that. It’s Arizona, when it’s good get as much as you can.

    Winter came back today! 17″ of fresh, my first day out snowboarding with my new dog, and I’m riding high on a wave of stoke. So I’d better get this out before I start acting like negative Nancy again.

    Winter got started pretty early, 11 November ’15, in the safe and easy confines of the ski area. Bluebird and cold dry snow.

    Early January brought a traverse across the San Francisco Peaks. Great snow on the first run down Snowslide Canyon, meh snow on the second run in the Fremont trees.
    These views never get old. I’ll probably never leave this place for this reason.

    We dug a pit. Good to go on this aspect.

    Early January brought decent low elevation snow, enough to give a shot at my favorite cinder cone mini-golf zone. Fun little zone, 800′ vert, aspects of all ranges. It hasn’t been rideable in 4 seasons. The views of the west side of the Peaks are unbeatable.

    So, I was a little surprised to see someone had beaten me to it. But glad I could use his uptrack.
    At the top I wind up running into the guy. He had come over from the aspect I wanted to hit. He appeared to be quite out of breath. He proceeds to tell me that he just had a face off with a mountain lion, the lion ran one direction, and he ran, well skinned, in the other direction.
    I decided that lion kept on running and I would put in some laps on a different aspect.

    Mid-January brought more snow and a quick sidecountry tour.
    Looking back at ski area,

    More snow brought a trip to the hantavirus hotel deep within the Peaks. Good times!

    This would be our second run of the day. A significant whumph just under the middle cliff band had us turning around. We topped out on this run earlier but there wasn’t enough snow in the starting zone to ride it from the top.
    A really magical day.

    The next morning was warm, and we just had time for a mini-golf chute lap.

    And a parting shot of Doyle Peak, our playground for the weekend.

    And that was it.
    The snow stopped falling. For eight weeks.
    Sure there were a bunch of lift served days, but for me touring stopped. Life happened and stuff.

    Until today. A wet stalled out system over the area was producing something on the mountain, I just didn’t really know how much. I was cautiously optimistic for 12″. But Damn! If I wasn’t pleasantly surprised with 17″.

    My new dog, Buddy. (Gimme a break, the shelter named him, and he learned it.) I’m pretty sure he had the best day of his life.

    And that’s it.
    Actually, I’m not sure if that’s it. This low pressure might stick around a little longer. And this much snow won’t go away too fast on north faces.
    The take away lesson (at least for me): Be grateful for what you get. I am. Every day touring I got this season was great. Splitboarding never gets old.

    PS: Maybe my Flagstaff comrades will chip in what they’ve got. We got a good crew here.

    Matt Wood

    Buddy is a great name and good on you for letting him adopt you. Sweet snowboard pics and story too.


    I second that, Buddy is a great dog name! and he’s well positioned to have a lot of great mountain days with you.


    Great write-up Rico. Early snow in the 928 is a rare gift. Glad to see you guys got that, some Jan snow and this latest bump despite the El Nino fail. High fives from Salida – miss shredding with you cats.



    Great season write up Rico. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and wish I had a season like yours.
    Here’s to more! ?

    Be sure to bookmark's Recent Activity page...


    Super!! Thanks Rico. You have some great terrain there

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