MOUNTAIN CONDITIONS UPDATE: LOOKING AHEAD TO THE HOLIDAYS
December 14, 2017
From John McLeod, Mt. Bachelor's president and general manager:
Last year I didn’t need to look at a forecast to see when it was going to snow, all I had to do was look out the window. This year there is a patch of carpet between my office and Tom’s that is wearing thin, along with Tom’s patience no doubt, from my constant, “What does the forecast say? How about now? Are you sure? What does Joe say?”
The latest view is that we may get a small amount this weekend, and there is a storm due Tuesday/Wednesday that should deliver some much needed new snow to our slopes. That’s the forecast as it stands, but my goal for now is to tell you what we are doing about it and what you can expect from us over the next two to three weeks, pending of course any significant departure from the mostly sunny outlook.
We are continuing our efforts to haul snow from snow dumps we created during the last storm and other secret stashes around the mountain to maintain our lift load and unload areas, access roads and top to bottom skiing on as many groomed runs as possible. During this inversion the weather on the mountain has been extremely pleasant and the groomed runs across the front side of the mountain have been spring-like and fun. Runs like Olympian, I-5 and Thunderbird lend themselves better to regular grooming in low-snow conditions than others like Cliffhanger and Old Skyliner, where the contours and ridges create areas of thinner coverage and are tougher to groom safely.
We are doing a lot of work elsewhere around the mountain to prepare runs and roads and loading areas to allow us to open more lifts and terrain as soon as possible. Much of this work is aimed at preparing those areas to receive the next dump of snow. If you have been to the mountain in the last week you will see the large trench above Cloudchaser where we have farmed snow to begin piecing together the unloading area and the upper sections of runs.
With the work we have been doing and just a little help from this next storm, we expect to open Cloudchaser on Thursday, December 21, with skiing on several of the runs that we widened and smoothed over the summer. Due to the natural contours of that terrain there will be some off-piste skiing opportunities from Cloudchaser, but anything off the groomed runs will require careful navigation and extra consideration of natural obstacles above and below the snow surface.
The west side is going to take more work. We are hauling snow as we can to areas of thin coverage, with an ambitious goal of having a few top to bottom runs available for the holidays. The next snowfall will determine how much of that we will be able to accomplish. We also need snow at the top to fill-in Outback Way and build the unload area. We are hoping to do this with snowmaking as soon as the temperatures drop. In general we are making snow whenever conditions allow, but while the inversion has provided lovely weather up here, it has not been conducive to snowmaking.
The top of Northwest requires a healthy Northwest type of storm before we can put that terrain into the mix.
We are looking at Summit… let’s just say we keep looking at it… and leave it that for now.
As far as lodge services go, Sunrise Lodge and parking are now open for the season. There is great skiing on that side of the mountain right now and from here on out we will have full service to go with it. Carousel is set to open this Saturday on its regular schedule which adds free beginner terrain into our mix. The Dirksen Derby is happening this weekend in a new location adjacent to Rainbow, and will provide plenty of entertainment over there for competitors and spectators alike.
We are opening Sparks Café this weekend, which along with Scapolo’s and Pinnacles coffee shop will remain open throughout the holiday period. Take advantage of the clear weather and enjoy spectacular views from Pine Marten Lodge while you relax and enjoy some food and beverage off the slopes. Our new Clearing Rock Bar kitchen is scheduled to be open at the end of next week, allowing us to offer a wider variety of tasty food in our main bar than we have for a long time.
It's been a challenging three weeks, but we are working as hard as we can to bring you the best skiing and riding experience possible with what we have. Do your snow dance or burn (legally, please!) whatever it is you think needs to be sacrificed to Ullr, the God of Snow, to ensure that next week's storm brings a deep, refreshing snowfall.
I know many of us would prefer storm skiing and face shots, but for now you can still get some great turns in the sunshine and take your shots in the bar. Either way, it will still be a memorable experience on the mountain this holiday period and the Mt. Bachelor team is ready and eager to serve you.
Happy holidays to you and yours.
President and General Manager
Mt. Bachelor LLC
ENHANCEMENTS AND UPGRADES FOR ELEVATED DINING EXPERIENCE AT MT. BACHELOR LODGES
Bend is famous for many things including skiing at Mt. Bachelor and for its sophisticated and diverse foodie scene, and we are excited about upgrades we are implementing to elevate the dining experience in our lodges this season.
Davis Smith, our new Food and Beverage Director, together with Chris Miller, our new Executive Chef, and Sean Mercer, a barman extraordinaire, have been collaborating to bring their vision for enhanced menus and top-notch service to life in time for the 2017-2018 winter season. In addition to investing in new equipment, our hospitality team has developed fresh menus that represent the range of ingredients available in the Pacific Northwest as well as the enthusiasm of our guests for food that is creative and delicious.
The Clearing Rock Bar, a favorite pit stop between powder runs for many of our guests, has been expanded and upgraded so we can provide classic pub food, both inside and on the deck when weather allows.
The passionate and innovative people who make up our culinary and hospitality team have more enhancements on the way for our restaurants and bars at Mt. Bachelor, and we look forward to helping you refuel your stomach and soul during your visit this winter.
BEN FERGUSON ON WORLD OF X GAMES THIS SUNDAY ON ABC
Mt. Bachelor snowboarder and Olympic hopeful Ben Ferguson will be featured on this week's episode of the World of X Games airing on ABC network stations. The professional snowboarder lives in Bend, Oregon, where he is a fixture on the slopes of Mt. Bachelor.
This weekly show will highlight Ferguson, who won silver medals in the super-pipe at both the X Games Aspen and the Burton U.S. Open, this Sunday, October 29, at 2:30 p.m. (PST). Currently ranked 8th in the FIS World Cup Standings for halfpipe, Ferguson is widely regarded as one of the best snowboarders in the world, and as a proud sponsor this this amazing athlete, we are pumped to see this week's World of X Games episode.