Having just missed the brunt of the most recent storm to march across Colorado, the local snowpack is starting to show some signs of age. Modest quantities over the last week, totaling16″ at the Alpine resort elevations, have kept the surface fresh, but deeper layers are beginning to morph into a less cohesive structure. Collapsing pockets on northerly or wind-exposed aspects are growing bigger and more abundant, as the cold light winds have dried the crystalline structure without stripping it away or packing it into a solid cohesive mass, as would happen with strong wind events. Whoomphing signs of larger-scale instability are rare but nevertheless evident. Powder, albeit not loads of fresh, continues to predominate with adequate support for relatively good traveling over moderate distances off the beaten trail, assuming you don’t select a route along a north-facing, wind-exposed ridge. Ski Tracks that are as old as 2-3 weeks are still evident sufficiently to follow – one of the up-sides of not having huge dumps grace us with piles of snow. After the wild mood swings of late 2016, temperatures have generally settled into a more consistently wintery pattern, sparing us the January thaw that often seems to break up the month during the 3rd week of the new year. Skiing is still all-around good!! Get out there and make some tracks!!

Happy trails!