ABC's ski bumming season 2017, Part II, North America - Page 3

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  1. #21

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    Mar 2008
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    Lower Hudson Valley
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    As I mentioned in earlier post, I was originally planning to go to Jackson last week, right after my little break back home. But weather pattern was such it favors staying in Utah. I changed my plan and was rewarded with 2 glorious days of full on powder in Park City/Canyons! http://forums.alpinezone.com/showthr...ys-Powder-Daze

    Deciding not to fight the Salt Lake city crowds on the weekend, I moved on. forecast was calling for daily snow fall in Jackson, adding up to almost a foot. I made my way there.

    Saturday was my travel day. I made my lazy way over to Jackson, stopping to check out Lava Hot Spring. It was refreshing to soak my tired muscles from the 2 days of "hard work" lapping powders.



    After the hot spring, I expected the next 2 1/2 hr of easy driving to Jackson. Instead, I found myself driving white knuckled on a road that's got several inches of blown in snow, courtesy of my in-car navigation system. At one point, I started to doubt if I were on the right road! I stopped to check a REAL map (paper map). That's when a couple cars (I mean trucks) came by. And after a quick consultation to reaffirm that I was indeed driving in a well-established state route (which just had a lot of snow on it!), I proceeded slowly and cautiously through that snow field. It took much longer than the distance would indicate. And that's on a good weather day.
    Last edited by abc; Mar 1, 2017 at 11:06 PM.

  2. #22
    Enjoy!

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  3. #23

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    Mar 2008
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    After 4 picture-less but NOT powder-less days in Jackson, during which nearly a foot of new snow had fallen (http://forums.alpinezone.com/showthr...109#post973109), I'm moving on toSun Valleynext.

    So yesterday (Tuesday) right after the lift closes, I drove straight towards Idaho Falls. It was "only" 90 miles away according to both google and my in-car GPS. I kind of expected to make it there before night fall. But what neither navigation system took into account, is the winter road condition!

    I made the infamous Teton pass in good time. There's still an hour of daylight and only 60 miles to Idaho Falls.

    An innocent left turn at Victor found me in another well-marked state route that hadn't seem to have seen a plow since Christmas! There's so much snow on the road I couldn't even see the edge!!!

    Remembering the white knuckled drive from Lava Hot Spring to Jackson 4 days earlier, I was in no mood to repeat the same experience. But even turning around was not an easy task when one can't see the edge of the road! Finally, after nearly 1/2 mile, a lonely structure appeared on the side of the road. Some kind of business. I couldn't care less what it was. It was a place for me to make a U turn!

    Taking a careful look at the map (with terrain info turned on), I decided I would go the long way around on a route which, unlike the one I was on that went through the middle of nowhere, the alternate route appears to connect many villages every 10 miles or so (as opposed to 25 miles of no civilization!). I figured there should be more traffic on it and the road better maintained.

    It was 20 miles extra in distance. But that's just 20 extra minutes if the road condition is good. It beats crawling along at 15 mph on a road that I can't see the edge of!

    My guesswork turned out better than I dare to hope. The road were well cleared of snow. And there's just enough traffic on it that I could easily follow them along, at about 75mph average! So I made it to Idaho Falls not much later than originally planned.

    Spending the night at Idaho Falls splits the distance between Jackson and Sun Valley. More over, there's absolutely NOTHING beyond Idaho Falls for the next 100 miles! I didn't fancy driving till 9-10 o'clock in a road that has ZERO traffic (I drove that stretch last year, in opposite direction, but during daylight hours, it was an extremely lonely road!)
    Last edited by abc; May 11, 2017 at 10:01 AM.

  4. #24

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    This morning, I had to do an hour long phone interview before I can hit the road to Sun Valley. I picked the hour of 9 EST, which is 7am in Idaho. So I was on the road at a reasonable time.

    The stretch from Idaho Falls to Arco is just as lonely as I remembered it. Only 2 notable landmarks: Crater of the Moon National Monument and the Atomic Museum across from INL (stands for Idaho National Lab, it turns out). Both were closed in the winter. So you got the idea of the landscape I was driving through.

    Arrived at Sun Valley in good time and skied a good part of the day.
    http://forums.alpinezone.com/showthr...454#post973454
    Last edited by abc; May 11, 2017 at 10:01 AM.

  5. #25

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    Mar 2008
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    The lonely Moon like landscape:

    IMG_0795.jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #26
    That is cool!

    Sent from my SM-G930P using AlpineZone mobile app
    2012-2013 (39)
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    2014-2015 (51)
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    2016-2017 target - 50

    If you take what the mountain gives you, you will always have fun!

  7. #27
    Next time use waze. It crowdsources road conditions from its users so there is a chance it would have none better than to send you on such a bad road.

  8. #28

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by benski View Post
    Next time use waze. It crowdsources road conditions from its users so there is a chance it would have none better than to send you on such a bad road.
    I found the best source is actually a map with topo information. Strangely, majority of maps don't offer that information up without one having to hunt for it!

    The route I ultimately choose to take skirt around the hills. The roads are straight, except to hit nearby villages. not wiggly as the one google/garmin try to sent me over! Was able to fly at 70-80mph average. Pretty much make up the difference in distance in no time (penalty)

    I'm a big fan of crowd sourcing, when appropriate. But by nature, it's not the best in predicting non-routine event such as winter road condition which changes from day to day. Relying on navigation software of any sort in winter is only for those who don't know how to to it themselves, or are too lazy to find routes using available information. I got burned once for being too lazy. Not going to let google/garmin to take charge of my life going forward.

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by abc View Post
    I'm a big fan of crowd sourcing, when appropriate. But by nature, it's not the best in predicting non-routine event such as winter road condition which changes from day to day. Relying on navigation software of any sort in winter is only for those who don't know how to to it themselves, or are too lazy to find routes using available information. I got burned once for being too lazy. Not going to let google/garmin to take charge of my life going forward.
    What is your strategy? I all I do is try to avoid very windy roads though I have very little experience.

  10. #30

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    Here's a real time example. Right now, there's a storm between me and my destination (Whistler).

    It took me a bit to find out there is a mountain pass that I have to cross. (Again, I wish all maps have elevation information, but sadly, few does). Will that pass be treacherous when it snows?

    As luck would have it, I shared a chair with a guy from Seattle. They too, will be driving from Sun Valley to Seattle tomorrow. They too, are concerned about the storm. Fortunately for me, he gave me some local tips on where to look for information about the condition on the pass.

    In the worst case, the pass will be closed! And I would have to head west to Oregon first. That adds like 100 miles! But compare to getting stuck with no way across for 2 days, it's still the lessor of 2 evils.

    So first thing tomorrow morning I will be checking the condition of the pass.

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