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Picking the best riding conditions through a storm or the day after the storm for better conditions

MidnightJester

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If you were to Ski or Board your favorite mountain or maybe a special mountain on a dumping day or a Top-tier out west mountain. With the days around a storm to ride and the choice of what days, mountains & conditions work best?

Do you prefer the all day refreshing of snow as it is coming down on packed powder or the next days deep settled snow amounts with better visibility?
 
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ss20

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Depends on "storm" conditions. 0 degrees, 50mph wind- no. 20 degrees, relatively calm, consistent but not overkill snowfall rates of half an inch or so an hour...sure.

Now that I'm out west I far prefer the day after the storm. Chasing gates and no powder frenzy. Storm days here can be very hit or miss in my experience. A million powder bros trying to ski 6" of fresh with 80% of the mountain shutdown for avalanche danger is stupid. Then the storm will clear and the next day will be dead and that's when all the fun stuff opens.
 

MidnightJester

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Depends on "storm" conditions. 0 degrees, 50mph wind- no. 20 degrees, relatively calm, consistent but not overkill snowfall rates of half an inch or so an hour...sure.

Now that I'm out west I far prefer the day after the storm. Chasing gates and no powder frenzy. Storm days here can be very hit or miss in my experience. A million powder bros trying to ski 6" of fresh with 80% of the mountain shutdown for avalanche danger is stupid. Then the storm will clear and the next day will be dead and that's when all the fun stuff opens.

I have the biggest mountain(Palisade Tahoe) I have ever ridden scheduled amongst 4 riding days if the legs hold out in Tahoe this weekend. It is going to drop a 8+ inch storm on a day while I am there. Should I be riding Palisades Tahoe on Sunday? while it is snowing or Monday? after the storm.

Heavenly Saturday
Palisade Tahoe Sunday (could be a foot from Sat night till Sunday close)
Northstar Monday (after 8 inches)
Heavenly Tuesday

If Palisades were to be too dumped on to open properly could swap northstar(seems better protected) and palisades
Northstar Sunday
Palisades Tahoe Monday
 
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ss20

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I have the biggest mountain(Palisade Tahoe) I have ever ridden scheduled amongst 4 riding days if legs hold out in Tahoe this weekend and it is going to drop a 8+ on a day while there. Will be riding Palisades Tahoe on Sunday while it is snowing or Monday after the storm.

Heavenly Saturday
Palisade Tahoe Sunday (could be a foot from Sat night till Sunday noon)
Northstar Monday
Heavenly Tuesday

Stay glued to the trees and pray wind doesn't shut down half the resort. Luckily it looks like your storm is pretty tame by CA standards! "Only" 50mph winds.
 

ss20

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@MidnightJester from OpenSnow for Palisades...

Tuesday - Thursday:

Mostly sunny skies continue through Thursday. Highs warming into the 30s Tuesday, and 40s for Wed - Thu. The winds become lighter starting Tuesday into Wednesday. They increase from the southwest Thursday with ridgetop gusts up to 40-50+ mph by afternoon.

Friday System:

A weak system moves through Friday with some light snow. Ridgetop winds could be gusting up to 60+ mph Friday morning, which could affect some upper mountain lifts. Then falling through the afternoon. Highs in the 20s on the upper mountain and 30s at the base.

The snow looks to be fairly light with only 1-4 inches of snow expected. We'll continue to watch the trends on this system all week.
 

MidnightJester

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I am pulling some strings for a Sat night / Sunday snow storm in the Tahoe area after the nice 1-4 inch storm. Maybe Ullr and Mother nature can thrown some more snow dice.

Do have to give a thumbs up to the Palisades Tahoe Weather blog it is pretty good for the Tahoe area
 
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Kingslug20

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We got very lucky...arrived at PC Thursday to bluebird skies, which is great as we were pretty shot from traveling. 5 hour drive in snow and downpours from vt to ct..then up at 3 to get to jfk.
Then it started snowing..and didn't stop till yesterday. Powder days! I do like skiing in a storm as long as there is some vis...my wife..not so much.
Crowds...with 7000 acres it spreads them out pretty thin. Get there early..get on line..and your in...
Knee deep in the woods.
Going to have to take a day off sometime..11 days is a bit much...not a spring chicken any more.....more like a winter turkey.
 

abc

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“If I were…”, I would do something I like.

But that’s not really what you want to hear, Because that’s not necessarily what YOU like.
 

MidnightJester

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“If I were…”, I would do something I like.

But that’s not really what you want to hear, Because that’s not necessarily what YOU like.
But that is the beauty to sometimes hear or see others ideas and point of view to sometimes pick up new concepts to incorporate them into your own ideas if applicable. Also like story time with real world ski and riding applications especially in areas I want to learn and gain from : )
 

abc

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It’s crazy NOT skiing a day on such a short trip! And as ss20 pointed out, it’s not that “big” by Tahoe standards.

So you know what I would do, without thinking: ski both days! Sorry not be much help for you. But maybe you find it helpful? ;)
 
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jaytrem

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You might want to consider flipping Northstar and Palisades depending on weather. Not sure how much of a shit show Northstar is these days, but Pre-Epic/Ikon I'd probably put the Northstar day on the weekend anyway. Northstar does have nice wind protected trees if you're into such things. We had that Martis Camp lift almost all to ourselves one weekend day when it was dumping hard.
 

Kingslug20

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One thing I do remember from a while ago at Squaw...vis during a storm was terrible...snow very heavy..next day sun came out...much better..
But I would never take a day off on a short trip...
 

crank

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It's pure fun for a skier to be out skiing when the snow is piling up.

I've spent many a snowy day skiing trees for better visibility. I've also skied big open western mountains like Mammoth in total whiteout conditions. No trees on top and nothing but white. Just point the tips downhill.

The day after I find usually more crowded but beautiful as well.
 

Kingslug20

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I've skied Grand Targhee for over 20 years..always skied in total whiteouts..zero vis for at least half the run..knee deep..scary..but what can you do..your there.
3 years ago the sun came out..it was my first time actually seeing the place!
 

jaytrem

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I've skied Grand Targhee for over 20 years..always skied in total whiteouts..zero vis for at least half the run..knee deep..scary..but what can you do..your there.
3 years ago the sun came out..it was my first time actually seeing the place!
I've been to Big White (aka Big Whiteout) 3 different years. I only know what it looks like from pictures on the web. Snow has always been great but can really hard to see a snow ghost coming.
 

jimk

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Depends on "storm" conditions. 0 degrees, 50mph wind- no. 20 degrees, relatively calm, consistent but not overkill snowfall rates of half an inch or so an hour...sure.

Now that I'm out west I far prefer the day after the storm. Chasing gates and no powder frenzy. Storm days here can be very hit or miss in my experience. A million powder bros trying to ski 6" of fresh with 80% of the mountain shutdown for avalanche danger is stupid. Then the storm will clear and the next day will be dead and that's when all the fun stuff opens.
Ditto above from another LCC skier.

On the specific Tahoe question: I've never skied Northstar, but I believe I've often heard it's a good place to go on storm days?? Jaytrem seems to allude to that. Palisades-Tahoe is frigging huge and that was before combining with Alpine Meadows. I've skied both Squaw and Alpine on separate days. I'd save it for a clear, less busy day so you can get around and try to see a good sample of the place.
 

MidnightJester

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Ditto above from another LCC skier.

On the specific Tahoe question: I've never skied Northstar, but I believe I've often heard it's a good place to go on storm days?? Jaytrem seems to allude to that. Palisades-Tahoe is frigging huge and that was before combining with Alpine Meadows. I've skied both Squaw and Alpine on separate days. I'd save it for a clear, less busy day so you can get around and try to see a good sample of the place.

Past Tahoe experience Heavenly (8) Sierra-at-Tahoe (1) Kirkwood (1)

Thank you for the input and ideas everyone as I am tackling 2 "new" mountains(Palisades Tahoe and NorthStar) and staring down a dumper of a storm. It is looking like (18+) over 24hrs are the starting numbers just about everywhere there ; ) Northstar might pull slightly smaller snow numbers 14-16 inches

I am looking to enjoy Palisades as I have never ridden expansive bowls and above trees except for Kirkwood and it was a scary frozen-glazed over day that day till noon. I also want to avoid accidently launching off a 10-20ft drop or "MORE", I am also bringing a growing upper intermediate rider along to grow his skills. I dragged him into Jays woods : )

It is looking like the mountains around Tahoe will open Sunday morning with "12-16" on the ground then another 8+ or more throughout the day Sunday to make Monday a great day too.

Palisades-Tahoe and NorthStar are only 20 miles apart so swapping either mountain is a option. I am feeling that NorthStar might be a better Sunday option if it is wind holds at palisaded and bad visibility on that mountain seems like brings risks without much glades it seems for protection.
Palisades lacks in trees and glades from the first looks??

------Palisades weather blog forecast-------- Blizzard and Thundersnow listed for Saturday night and Sunday Morning
Highs are only in the 20s for the upper mountain and low 30s or near 30 degrees at the base. Ridgetop winds from the west gusting up to 60+ mph Sunday morning and dropping to 30-40+ mph during the afternoon. that could cause some upper mountain lift opening delays Sunday.

Here is my updated snowfall forecast for Saturday night through Sunday night, for totals by early Monday morning.
  • 12-18 inches at the base.
  • 15-21 inches at mid-mountain elevations.
  • 18-24 inches up top.
Going to have to drive through the heavy part of the storm for 40 miles to the mountains on Sunday in the early morning. Without snow issues or traffic it is (1 hour 15 minutes). Need to get to mountains by 8:00am to park at bases. NorthStar and Palisades base has filled up by 8:00 to 8:15 most sat and sunday morning,

I am trying to Tailgate on my trip to Tahoe this year at Hotel room and Mountains. I am bringing a smallish clam shell camping stove on plane as a item "no fuel" allowed. This is Colemans($100) version of the Jet-boil Genesis 2 burner stove($300)
301187_26259_XXL.webp
81HE0qCL75L._CR3,0,1914,1080_SR684,386_.jpg

Weighs just under 9 pounds is about 10x12x4 inches closed and fits in backpack
 
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MidnightJester

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Wow, you're hard core to bring stove on fly to ski trip!

Not sure if this link will work, has photos and comments from my visit to both ten years ago: https://web.archive.org/web/2017042...com/a/squaw-valley-alpine-meadows-a-pictorial
The link works fine thank you.
If the stove didn't fit in my personal item it wouldn't go due to maxed out on weight in luggage I think for this trip
Trying to make the most of what we have while going there and wanted to try it out distance mountain tailgating. Cooking for ourselves throughout the trip will be a chore but save a lot. Room has a microwave and a mini-fridge. Dropped room stove to gain a second real bed
 
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