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Chasing the Powder this season

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
In a recent years, I came to realisation that for skiing powder, you need to monitor the forecast and go last minute where the snow is.
So Im thinking, if anyone like me, ready to go last minute, we could initiate the group of 3-4 of approx same techincal level, which will provide lots of benefits in terms of cost and safety.
- driving expenses, about 500 return, sharing by 4 is more sence
- driving in shifts, less tiring
- hiring guides will offer more interesting lines for group techincal abilities
- sharing accommodation

I understand that there is always the risk of meeting less adequate people, that is solvable by going with the guides, also no obligations, you could exit the group at any time.
Tell me what you think Smile

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

At the moment we came out with the following: (This section will be changing reflecting the current state.)

- Chasing Powder is our number 1 prority, you should be flexible with: quality of accommodation, quality of the chairlifts, availability of apre-ski, quality of the service at resort
- the dates most likely will be - starting from Wed/Thu night , returning Sun/Mon night. From the eurotunnel we could utilize Short Stay program ( from 64 each way, return in 5 days) or frequent traveler program, from 46 each way, requires to buy 10 tickets.
- the group, is max 4 person, all same equipment, preferably with skinning ability. The terrain choice is dictated by lowest ability in the group. All should be experienced offpiste skiers with avalanche knowledge and equipment (beacon, shovel, probe). On arrival/everyday, we will spend some time practicing with avalanche equipment.
- drivers/car pool, at the moment I own kia ceed estate with a roof box, winter tyres are must. My location is Cambridge (Huntingdon) (close to A1), if someone traveling from North, could leave the car at my place (there are 3 car places off the road). There will be small fee (ie £25) per person/whole trip to the car owner to compensate the car running costs (winter tyres cost 300, 120-150 - to swap them each year, etc).
- approx budget, return: fuel + tolls =300, 120 tunnel, accommodation about 70-100 per day, skipass 35-50 day, guides optional 350 day/group, powder - priceless.

- other, Im not a professional guide, all participants take all responsibility on their actions, everyone should spend some time to understand where we are going, what we are doing, and participate in planning. The main goal is powder, most likely from early morning to the lift closures (one must be fit enough to do that), limited apreskis or non-exciting at all.
- tricky questions (common sense). Because the activity we are doing involves certain risks, In the group there will group leader (most experienced or willing to take a lead, remember, with the power there is more responsibility), its all common sense, members of the group should follow the decisions made by the group. For inadequate behavior one could be asked to leave the group/ski separately, that includes not acceptable level of skiing. The member of the group have a right to leave the group any time ie ski separately.
Its advised to have travel insurance plus dedicated ski insurance for the offpiste.


Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Sun 9-09-18 14:10; edited 4 times in total
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
It's certainly not a bad idea but your problem is that not that many people have the flexibility to take a week off at the sort of notice you'd need to get an reliable sense of the sort of meaningful snowfalls you'd want. People certainly do pow chasing from a central location and even sHs based in Brussels seem to manage it for weekends
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Europe is gash for powda skiing.

Hugely overrated.

It gets modest snowfall

It is close to a warm sea and gets damp snow.

And 6 inches of porridge gets tracked out everywhere in minutes.

Better to go to Japan, Alaska, Wyoming, Utah, Georgia, Iran or Russia.

Snow is much deeper, drier and lighter.
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It's certainly not a bad idea but not sure how realistic it is.

Shared driving: from where? Chances are some need to drive to the meet up spot, meaning you need to allow time for that.

Shared lodging: probably ok if none are fussy

Shared guides: what technical ability? What are their attitudes, stamina, speed etc.?

Good luck finding a pool of candidates for the above. Then, try to match the days when enough of you are free to run off at a momentís notice.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Wow. That sounds cool. Honestly itís a useful suggestion @Whitegold.

A ski team able to deploy to powder anywhere in the world within 24 hours.

But on permanent standby in a secret palm tree covered island.

Hmmm...


http://youtube.com/v/9XNWA_yZvWo

Thunderbirds are... snow!
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Whitegold wrote:
Europe is gash for powda skiing.

Hugely overrated.

It gets modest snowfall

It is close to a warm sea and gets damp snow.

And 6 inches of porridge gets tracked out everywhere in minutes.



Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing

Comedy Gold
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Whitegold wrote:


Better to go to Japan, Alaska, Wyoming, Utah, Georgia, Iran or Russia.
.

When did someone moved Russia out of Europe? Puzzled Shocked
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
abc wrote:
Whitegold wrote:


Better to go to Japan, Alaska, Wyoming, Utah, Georgia, Iran or Russia.
.

When did someone moved Russia out of Europe? Puzzled Shocked


And Georgia
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Ha ha, yes the powder is always not where we are.

How realistic is this, not sure, but if I could make it, then probably someone else could do it as well, also we are looking for a small group of 4 max.
Also, Im thinking of having 4 days at most, so we dont have to book the whole week hols and it wll be easier to manage, perfectly Thu-Fri-Sat-Sun, departing Wednesday evening, gather everyone, drive for about 4 hours, and stay somewhere in the middle of the route, leaving another 4 hours to the destination. Then stay at destination.

As for destination, yes the fresh snow get tracked quite quickly, but not on the small resorts in the middle of nowhere, go to resorts, most of the people probably never heard of. Usually less people, accommodation is cheaper, skipass is cheaper, guides are cheaper and freshies stays for few days at least. Then after that, there is always skitour from the lifts. Yes, that means less apreski, but who cares if you skied powder whole day Smile

Technical level - I think we could start with easier and conservative terrain in the beginning.

re Russia, is part of it Europe indeed , Ive been in Siberia for about 10 years in the summer for about 2 weeks each year (I speak russian as well Smile) and keep an eye on whats happening in the winter in terms of snow.
Georgia usually gets a lot of snow for few weeks, then about no snow for rest of the year. Siberia, usually get some good snow, but this season its been very poor. However Alps been very good this year, lets hope we broke the bad weather sequence.


Last edited by You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net. on Thu 6-09-18 16:28; edited 1 time in total
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Hi Ed

It's an idea that Iíve often toyed with although never actually done, primarily due to a lack of like minded people, cost, and other logistics. This winter I would give myself a 65% chance of being able to take a couple of days off plus a weekend at very short notice. Iíve got a car with winter tyres, chains, and a rack that can take up to 6 pairs of skis although it is not the biggest car. I probably wouldnít want a guide for 4 days, I feel that even with a group it would make it a bit expensive, and I donít feel that it is warranted everywhere. Apart from that though I think that our objectives would be fairly similar, ski hard for a few days, donít be too fussy about lodgings, head home. Iím not after Ďextremeí skiing or cliff hucks but happy on fairly steep terrain and happy skinning. Can PM to check further that our abilities and ambitions align. Where to stay is probably the biggest hurdle but with a car we donít have to stay bang in the middle of a ski resort which makes it more doable. Meeting up, you appear to be able to leave your car at Dover for about £40/week so meeting there would probably be the best option. Let me know if you find someone else, it would be a cool trip to do
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@rambotion

Great stuff, count me in. I think we are on the same page. Im also looking to conservative easy offpiste skiing , where safety is priority, nothing extreme. Want to happily ski until age of 90 and more Smile

Lets see if we get more like minded skiers.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
So there I /we are / am spending the whole season out in the Southern French Alps and this mate of mine manages to score nigh on the same % of powder days without actually doing a season!

http://stylealtitude.com/powder-weekend-warriors.html

I do think that @ed48, proposal has a lot of substance - if only based on what my mate does!

If you have the desire then I think it's achievable, though maybe investigate how my mate does it*

*No kids, flexible work, flexible Mrs Toofy Grin
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Hmmmm.... I'm in N. Ire which complicates things, but I'd be up for trying to make it work.

Ability wise I've done a few UCPA Off-Piste weeks, this year's guide told me to book the expert group next time, but not into hucking cliffs or risking life and limb. Also happy to skin.
ski holidays     
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
This is exaclty what Im thinking Smile. Few years ago, I spent whole season in the Alps and had only 10-15 powder days. And I thought whats the point, if I could have about the same and also not missing a lot of fun at work Smile Last season, working in the office, I had almost 20 powder days (just becasue its been very good season and luck of course).

Going for a weekend has one drawback - locals, they usually know the mountain very well , so more chances that it will be more tracked. Ideally it has to be bad visibility on weekend, at least upper parts will be left tracked for next day. I think going before the weekend is better idea, if there is a choice of course.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
"10-15 powder days"

Assuming one manages to ski 4 days per that Wed-Sun getaway, That's just 3-4 trips. Ski 3 days out of that Wed-Sun trip takes 4-5 weekends.

In a 4 month winter, it should not be too difficult to fit in 4 or even 5 weekender trips. Toofy Grin
ski holidays     
 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Yebbut not everyone would be ble to drop everything every weekend and with a stalled high it could be weeks between major storms and you obviously wouldn't want to drive out the crazy weeks in Feb do 4-5 weekends is a realustic target.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Tom Doc wrote:
Hmmmm.... I'm in N. Ire which complicates things, but I'd be up for trying to make it work.

Ability wise I've done a few UCPA Off-Piste weeks, this year's guide told me to book the expert group next time, but not into hucking cliffs or risking life and limb. Also happy to skin.


Welcome to the Storm Chasers team Smile

At this moment this is just a intentional thread. Make sure you subscribe to this thread in order to receive updates. Starting from end of December we are going to activate 'the protocol' Smile
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
yeh interested with huge caveats about family commitments!!

I've done it a few times, once pre-Xmas was fantastic, really enjoyed the warm Euro Porridge and tracked out fields Smile

https://greghilton.co.uk/oldsite/albums/morzine06/
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Quote:

Starting from end of December we are going to activate 'the protocol'

Why so late?

I scored a long weekend of powder in Austria on 1st December last year!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BcKqErujPW8/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@leggyblonde, yes very good point, less people, cheaper flights!
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And in French High season - fly to Turin and rent a car and do Italian stations
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
It's a stretch being a family man but I wouldn't mind keeping tabs on the plans.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
leggyblonde wrote:
Quote:

Starting from end of December we are going to activate 'the protocol'

Why so late?

I scored a long weekend of powder in Austria on 1st December last year!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BcKqErujPW8/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link


Me too Smile, beginning of November at Stubai, at least 3 days powder and more than 1m of snow in some not exposed places, and a lot of sharks, basically destroyed pair of skis.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/gW4XPXwWzNxURjRp2

I personally would save some money for proper season, not enough snow base, sharks, high risk of equipment damaging.
Also, Ive already commited to first week of December, to help my friends to introduce into the sport, Aosta valley most likely.

Last season was exceptional in terms of snow in the beginning of the season, if we get the same this year, it will be amazing.
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Weathercam wrote:
And in French High season - fly to Turin and rent a car and do Italian stations


Good point! Will try that coming season.
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@ed48, No sharks on the meadows of Leogang but I take your point!

Im a potential if snowboarders are allowed
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
leggyblonde wrote:
@ed48, No sharks on the meadows of Leogang but I take your point!

Im a potential if snowboarders are allowed


Im ex-border, so its fine with me, also its probably decision of the team. Usually borders got some difficulty with steep t-bars, long traverses, tight forests, 'skitour'. Life is much easier when everybody in the group have the same equipment.
snow conditions     
 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I'd also like to keep tabs on this thread -

The last few seasons I've successfully managed to go out last minute several times after following the forecasts and have skied some great powder, but I usually end up having to go alone. Would be safer/better/cheaper to join up with others. Had a couple of very successful Engelberg trips very late season in 2016 and 2017 (mid-late April).

Wepowder has been good for this the last few years.

I usually prefer to ski steeps where possible but any powder is better than no powder!

I'm usually super-flexible with time and weekdays actually work better than weekends for me in general (but weekends can be done too).
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
less snow forecast in the lower meadows also worth keeping an eye on, especially if skiing during the storm as usually trees help as well...
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
musehead wrote:
I'd also like to keep tabs on this thread -

The last few seasons I've successfully managed to go out last minute several times after following the forecasts and have skied some great powder, but I usually end up having to go alone. Would be safer/better/cheaper to join up with others. Had a couple of very successful Engelberg trips very late season in 2016 and 2017 (mid-late April).

Wepowder has been good for this the last few years.

I usually prefer to ski steeps where possible but any powder is better than no powder!

I'm usually super-flexible with time and weekdays actually work better than weekends for me in general (but weekends can be done too).


Welcome to the club! Smile
I heard a lot of good stuff about Engelberg, but never managed to get there, stuck with France last few years Smile
I suggest we start with the mellow terrain and with the time progress we will see.
Stay tuned Smile
Ed
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
kitenski wrote:
less snow forecast in the lower meadows also worth keeping an eye on, especially if skiing during the storm as usually trees help as well...


Yup. thats the one of the criteria of the resort we will go. It should have doable forest and most importantly be protected from the winds with the chairlift open no matter what the weather. I think skiing in the forest is one the most enjoyably activity one could find.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Can't recommend this place highly enough for a short trip

http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=124440

Pics here

https://m.facebook.com/mike.richards.927/albums/10153976841828624/
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
TO: nozawaonsen

Thank you. Alan Tracy was my uncle.
snow conditions     
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Mike Pow wrote:
Can't recommend this place highly enough for a short trip


Hey Mike, looks like nice place for a trees, also its probably too far away to drive from uk. Great pictures!
Whats the plan for the next season?

Ed


Last edited by Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see? on Sat 8-09-18 15:40; edited 1 time in total
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I'm probably a loose yep if we are talking about Thursday night getting back overnight Mon type sessions. Know a good safe free streetparking location just off M25 South too for anyone not travelling from Essex.
ski holidays     
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
ed48 wrote:
Mike Pow wrote:
Can't recommend this place highly enough for a short trip


Hey Mike, looks like nice place for a trees, also its probably too far away to drive from uk. Great pictures!
Whats the plan for the next season?

Ed


Cheers.

It's got it all. High alpine for clear days.

1000 vertical metres of trees when it's dumping.

Yes too far to drive from UK but easy drive from Innsbruck or Verona.

Hoping to get Welsh skiing in before heading to Hokkaido for my 12th winter.

Fingers crossed for a March trip to Europe. Would like to hit eastern Italy on the border with Austria and Slovenia.
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Mike,

Looks like nice place, worth checking. I found out that almost each of small resorts have something unique in them, worth exploring and finding something new.

Good luck with the season!

Ed
snow report     
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
At the moment we came out with the following.

- the dates most likely will be - starting from Wed/Thu night , returning Sun/Mon night. From the eurotunnel we could utilize Short Stay program ( from 64 each way, return in 5 days) or frequent traveler program, from 46 each way, requires to buy 10 tickets.
- the group, is max 4 person, all same equipment, preferably with skinning ability. The terrain choice is dictated by lowest ability in the group. All should be experienced offpiste skiers with avalanche knowledge and equipment (beacon, shovel, probe). On arrival/everyday, we will spend some time practicing with avalanche equipment.
- drivers/car pool, at the moment I own kia ceed estate with a roof box, winter tyres are must. My location is Cambridge (Huntingdon) (close to A1), if someone traveling from North, could leave the car at my place (there are 3 car places off the road). There will be small fee (ie £25) per person/whole trip to the car owner to compensate the car running costs (winter tyres cost 300, 120-150 - to swap them each year, etc).
- approx budget, return: fuel + tolls =300, 120 tunnel, accommodation about 70-100 per day, skipass 35-50 day, guides optional 350 day/group, powder - priceless.
- other, Im not a professional guide, all participants take all responsibility on their actions, everyone should spend some time to understand where we are going, what we are doing, and participate in planning. The main goal is powder, most likely from early morning to the lift closures (one must be fit enough to do that), limited apreskis or non-exciting at all.
- tricky questions (common sense). Because the activity we are doing involves certain risks, In the group there will group leader (most experienced or willing to take a lead, remember, with the power there is more responsibility), its all common sense, members of the group should follow the decisions made by the group. For inadequate behavior one could be asked to leave the group/ski separately. the member of the group have a right to leave the group any time ie ski separately.
Its advised to have travel insurance plus dedicated ski insurance for the offpiste.
snow conditions     
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@ed48, I do hate to be negative, but this sounds like a recipe for (at least social) disaster.

Why would you yourself choose to limit yourself to the mowest common ability?

And organising such things is usually a total pita.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
And your location arc is limited by driving distance.

Personally Iíd just book a weeks heli or cat skiing in BC.

Job done.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
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Whitegold wrote:
Europe is gash for powda skiing.

Hugely overrated.

It gets modest snowfall

It is close to a warm sea and gets damp snow.

And 6 inches of porridge gets tracked out everywhere in minutes.

Better to go to Japan, Alaska, Wyoming, Utah, Georgia, Iran or Russia.

Snow is much deeper, drier and lighter.


Were you still in hibernation last season? Went to Wyoming - they had a very average season. Alaska and Georgia not great either. Although obviously each of those is much easier than France/CH for a weekend from the UK?!?! And you ignore that the terrain and vertical in Europe is better than Japan, Utah and the like. The reality is that itís pot luck and thereís plenty of powder in Europe, especially if youíre flexible to be able to chase the weather fronts.

And any decent guide or local will still find untracked snow for a few days after a dump for those willing to stick skis on back and hike for a few mins

I say go for it. If you end up in Verbier on a powder weekend iíll point you in the right direction
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