Monday, February 15, 2016

Mt. Washington in Review

Mt. Washington – Review
To those who missed it, we hope you plan to come on one of these fabulous ski trips.  Our club, along with the organizers of the Victoria Alpine Ski Club, is listing many ski trips for our club members this ski season.  This was the three day bus tour to Mt. Washington. 
PSC members took the 3pm sailing out of Horseshoe Bay and arrived in Nanimo with time to spare.  As a result, we were instructed by our Victoria trip organizer to take all of the skis and baggage across the street from the terminal parking lot and sit in the more comfortable surroundings of the Miller’s Pub just a few minutes’ walk away.  25 minutes before the bus was to arrive, a frantic SMS text arrived: “The driver will only pick you up at the designated location, haul all of the baggage back! Please?”
10 minutes later, we had sucked back our beer, paid the bill and were we back at Arrivals in Departure Bay.  Thanks must be said to the local fellow who not only pointed to the pub but carried some of our bags both ways!!!
Anyone who has never been on a ski bus tour we have organized in the past will not know how much fun the party bus is.  Both Trevor and Sven bought out the guitars and most everyone in the bus joined in at one time or another.  The back of the bus never went silent for one second and the songs, chords, beer and beverages of choice flowed ‘like country wine’.
A well organized Maggie from the Victoria club had us form a chain gang and we hand-bagged the luggage off in record time, had the keys and rooms all set, and we were checked in in no time at all.  Some left for the pub, some hit the hot tub, most of us stayed in the rooms and then just continued the party with more songs, drinks with new friends or past acquaintances who partied most of the night.  Three hardy athletes stayed up until 3:30 in the morning and we out on the slopes skiing by 9:30am (not by choice).  We had been told it was 1 pm and it was time to get up.  Once out of bed at 8:45am, one may as well go skiing!!!
A few inches of new snow, winds kicking up gusts to 40km and snow blowing all day long meant we were in for winter conditions.  Most agree the -3 degrees and the past weeks +10 made it for boiler plate at the top and cruddy conditions in the early hours (not due to the lack of sleep).  The smart ones all came into the bar early (11am & four top to bottom runs) where we pounded back Caesars,  beer and jugs of water, had a relaxing lunch, and then hit the slopes in earnest just before 1pm.  What a difference an hour and ½ made.
Fresh powder, the slopes had improved 200% and not one of the group of (24?) skiers did not say the afternoon was fantastic.  Trevor had taken our group of PSCers on a tours earlier and had shown us the black run chairlift area.  We headed right up to that ‘experts only’ chair and the moment the rocks were not directly below the drop-off, we let our skis find the paths through the steep unmarked area.  The trees were just far enough apart that we did not have to use them to pivot on, and the snow had not been touched by skiers for days.  Untracked powder was everwhere we turned to.  On cliff had to be avoided, but the runs were incredible.  We even went to the left of the chair as I had noticed the rope which closed off that area did not go all the way over to the trees, so there was room to let ourselves though and we had 3 more runs down that side.  With the legs almost gone, we prudently head back to Ted’s Bar for Apre` skiing.
The hot tub, room parties and much more went on until 7pm, then it was Pot Luck in Room 312.  You would never find the kind of food brought in by Victoria and Pacific’s members in the best restaurant on the mountain.  It was superb, delicious, hot and way too much in volume, but hit the spot.  There was even dessert, if you still had room.  The beer and wine flowed.
At 9pm many of us who had already dressed up in 1970 era costumes walked the short distance down to Ted’s Bar for the Retro Evening.  At 9:30 the band began playing the old hits and many of us took to the dance floor, some members still recalling the great moves we did when dancing to the disco era tunes of the time.  I wore the real Blue Blocker glasses, had an original electric Labatts 1970s ‘t’ shirt, hippy cut bellbottom GWG jeans and a red bandana.  Bruce sported the yellow glasses YOKO ONO once wore, had a hippy shirt and looked cool.  Jennifer wore red.  There were many others: Maggie with her long eyelashes flowing hair tinged to suit the style and blue bandana, Jackie in her white furs, Viki with her hair wrapped in another hippy bandana with a 70’s blouse.  Yet, the crème de la crème was Richard, he had the original stripped bellbottom pants and the shirt to match which he claimed his mother gave him in 1970, but the glasses with the blue flashing lights made all of the crowd notice. 
Lots of good music, dancing and fun was had by all.  The real kicker was that Richard left before they announced the winner for best dressed male of the 70’s.  He had been named the winner.  As he was no longer around, it went the someone else, but who really cares, we were all cool hanging loose and ‘chillin’.
Sunday, the temperature rose to +3 but the rain held off until after we arrived in Nanimo just after 5pm so the skiing was actually great.  The crud on the runs of the previous day had softened up and you could ski anywhere you wanted without too much difficulty.  Most headed back to the hotel by 12:30, but we kept on the boards until the legs again said, “bar time”, and we either went and put our equipment away around 2pm or went directly to the bar, as I did.  The result of this executive decision was that I ended up being the last person on the bus, but we still left 10 minutes before the scheduled departure time of 3:30pm.
If you did not go on this trip, you missed one of the better bus ski parties and some great skiing.
Next ski trip leaves February 27th for Silver Star in Vernon, and then you can opt to join for the 4 days up to Revelstoke March 1 – 4th.
We also have a week long to Whistler March 13 – 18th and another ski trip to Legends in April. 
Check out the skiing on this PSC Web Site,
Sven, President PSC