If you’ve been following weather patterns in the Northwest at all this year, you’d probably know that we’ve had an extremely strange winter (in fact, this winter has been strange nationwide! But especially so out West). Seattle, which is typically well-known for it’s rain fall that pretty much doesn’t stop in the 9 months following September (although the longer Drew and I live here, the more we feel that this is a total myth, perhaps to keep the tourists away), has had a very dry winter. It has been cold (sometimes dropping into the 20′s – very strange for this area) but it has been dry and sunny. While dry might seem nice, dry in the city translates to one thing in the mind of a snowboarder – dry at the mountain. The closest mountain to Seattle, Snoqualmie, didn’t even open until late January! So you can only imagine my excitement when it started raining in Seattle, hard, early last week. Rain in Seattle = snow at the mountains! So on Saturday, Drew and I woke up at 6am, packed our bags, and made the 2-hour trek up to Steven’s Pass (our first time checking out this resort).
We had a great time! I started out my day by taking a few runs with Drew on the bunny slope, Daisy – he’s getting really good! (I tried to tell him he was ready to graduate from green circle to blue square, but he wasn’t having it). There were several inches of new snow, and the morning started out as a clear, crisp, bluebird day. Next, I headed to the backside and alternated taking runs on Jupiter and Southern Cross. There was so much new snow, the skiing on the backside was pretty epic (there were also a lot of people to show for it, although the crowds began to weed out after my first few runs).
Around 12:30, Drew and I met for a quick lunch at the car (the lodge was a madhouse, so we wouldn’t even consider it) – our lunch consisted of bison burgers with chipotle mayo left over from our Valentine’s Day dinner the night before (yes, we know how to eat gourmet, even on the slopes!), organic apples and homemade coffee cake. Thirty minutes later we were back at it, shredding the fresh pow like it was nobody’s business.
On our first post-lunch run, I finally talked Drew into taking a run up the Brooks chair lift with me (I think I accomplished this only because he didn’t want to walk the extra 200 yards back to the bunny lift). By this time, it snowing pretty hard, and we were stuck on an extremely slow 2-man chair that kept stopping due to the weather (the only one perk was that we were positioned right above the terrain park, so we got to watch the locals hit the jumps as we patiently waited for the lift to start back up again – at least that was mildly entertaining). We took a run down and parted ways again (Drew decided he wasn’t quite cut out for the blues just yet, although I really beg to differ; he was doing awesome) and I headed up to the Seven chair, which takes you to the peak on the Steven’s pass side of the mountain. I found a few more incredible spots of powder, but the visibility was getting so bad I knew I couldn’t make it much longer. More importantly, though, I was starting to get nervous that we wouldn’t be able to get down the mountain in Drew’s 2-wheel drive car! So we met back up again around 2:30 and called it a day. And it was an epic one at that. I don’t know if I fully believe it or not, but one article I came across this morning said that Steven’s Pass got 7 feet of new snow this past weekend??? Which brought it up from 50% of normal snowfall to 70%. I wish it was next weekend already!!
We got home nice and early since we left a little on the early side, took quick naps, read books while we sipped a pre-dinner glass of wine (I’m currently reading Anthony Kiedes’s autobiography, recommended by Danielle, and I haven’t been able to put it down!) and then we headed to dinner at Daniel’s Broiler to enjoy a delicious post-Valentine’s Day meal. Typically these types of chain-y steakhouse restaurants aren’t my favorite, but the meal was surprisingly enjoyable (my scallops were incredible, although the mushroom risotto they were placed on top of wasn’t quite cooked all the way) and the service was great.
All in all, Drew and I had a wonderful Valentine’s Day weekend (yes, this holiday has finally reached the point where it spans an entire weekend). And I’m counting down the days until my mom comes up to visit and we head to Crystal next weekend!