Word on the Mountain
Matt Lillard, Eaglecrest General Manager
January, 24 2014
Spring Skiing……In JANUARY!
This season’s roller coaster ride continues, going from some fantastic powder skiing two weeks ago, to what seems like an endless stretch of warmth and, at times, rain. Fortunately we had some good snows in late December and early January, which have helped us hold onto decent base depths across the whole mountain. The good news is that this week’s rains have departed and we are in for what can only be called a fantastic spring weekend ahead.
While the forecast for sea level is fog and low 40’s, the sun should be shining brightly on Eaglecrest Friday through Sunday, with temps pushing as high as 50 degrees. I must say, for this relatively new to Alaska guy, I never thought that was possible at elevation in January - but Mother Nature never ceases to amaze. The best news comes in the form of this quote from this morning’s NOAA weather discussion for late next week: “Models keep hinting the upper high moving back southward over southeast Alaska with much cooler air mass.” The discussion ends there and for this eternal optimist that is good enough for me!
So, what do we do while we wait for the return to winter? The answer seems pretty simple. We get outside, above the fog, and enjoy our wonderful community resource - Eaglecrest! Conditions across the mountain this weekend should be fast and firm in the morning, quickly softening to spring conditions by late morning under sunny skies and warm temps. While there are occasional thin areas developing, we still have considerable base depths across the mountain with lots of skiing and riding fun. Our terrain park will feature a couple of rails and boxes, plus a jump to practice your tricks in the soft snow. For all the Nordic skiers out there we have lost the Lower Loop due to low snow, but the Upper Loop is groomed and reportedly in great shape.
On the event front this weekend is Eaglecrest’s 33rd Annual Learn to Ski Weekend, sponsored by Mendenhall Auto Center. We can’t wait to welcome over 35 new skiers from the Juneau community to a fantastic weekend of fun and skiing. The Juneau Ski Club will also be racing on Lower Hillary’s, so we will have kids of all abilities and backgrounds schussing down the slopes in the beautiful sunshine.
All things considered, we have weathered the weather extremely well, considering what the temps and moisture have been in the past two weeks. The mountain could be in a lot worse shape and we are always grateful for any skiing and riding we can get. So don’t wait, come on up to Eaglecrest this weekend and enjoy our midwinter break. Our true winter is bound to return soon with powder snow for all. See you out there!