Still here? Nice to have you. Read on for the breakdown.
The skiing: Awesome
Saturday: Sugarbowl. We were rewarded for rising at the butt crack of dawn (alarm set for 5:00, blast off at 6:00) by a surprise dump of snow. Most forecasts had predicted a little, but we got quite a lot Friday night, with snow on and off through the following day.
We hit a ginormous traffic jam at the chain controls on the way up and were a little late getting on the mountain, so we missed the fresh stuff on the runs. This is in the way of explaining why after lunch I decided to join the gang and HIKE UP JUDAH BOWL. Christalmighty. It's more or less like climbing a snow ladder, where in most places previous hikers have kicked in little steps for you to stab your boot into. But not always. Did I mention I had to CARRY MY SKIS? My friend Eric claimed this to be a "10 minute hike." So THIRTY minutes later I was standing at the top with Sophie, who did a full face-plant into the snow and just laid there for a while. And yes, we hit some fresh stuff on the way down, but the sun had warmed it up enough to make it a little thick and kind of a problem for me in my Righteous Carving Skis. Note to self: MUST PROCURE POWDER SKIS, especially before our Utah trip next year.
But even though it was hard up and hard down, I was happy to have done it and have asked Husband at least a dozen times "Can you believe I climbed Judah Bowl????" He can easily believe that Sophie did it; the miracle is that I did.
Sunday: Squaw. I think we had the best snow I've skied on all season here. I am really loving this mountain these days, and if you told me I could not ski anywhere else at Tahoe beside Squaw for the rest of my life, I'd be pretty much ok with that. Several of the lifts I really wanted to ski (Siberia, Granite Chief) were on wind hold the whole day, which was such a teaser because we could see the sun shining on the most gorgeous steep groomers, and we could not get to them.
But we had a great time bombing the Shirley Lake cruisers and the saddle of KT-22. My only disappointment besides the closed lifts is that I chickened out on the front run off KT, even though it was groomed and Husband said he thought I could definitely do it. I was spooked by a single word: expert. As in a sign that say "Experts only." "Advanced" is ok; "expert" is not. What we need to do is find a run of similar pitch that is not off KT and has no such sign. Then I'd probably be fine.
Monday: Alpine Meadows. Blue skies and happy faces all around. Except when the lessons desk screwed up my dad's private lesson and I had a customer service meltdown. But even that or the sticky snow late in the afternoon couldn't stomp on a great day. The snow on Wolverine Bowl in the morning was near perfect.
And my surrogate sister Jennifer, a beginning snowboarder, made it to the top of the mountain at the end of the day. She's a recent college graduate who moved into my room at my parents' house a few years ago. It's been good for everyone: housing for her, an empty nest filled for my parents, and a ski buddy for my dad. She's an elite badminton player and so is gone a lot training and traveling the world for tournaments, but everyone loves it when she's home (as in, their house). I'm somewhat concerned my parent love her more than me, but then again she really is much nicer and I love her too.
The cabin: Cozy
We had a big crowd, with all three bedrooms, the laundry room, and a closet filled with sleepers, as well as a few in the living room.
And so we had some big dinners: spaghetti and meatballs, with me on the sauce (really—recipe for my blood orange cosmos coming up) and my friend Jim cranking out another great batch of his Aunt Grace's meatballs. Our friend Jeanette fed us teriyaki chicken the next night. And somewhere in there, Sophie blew out another batch of birthday candles. Check out Husband there in the bottom left corner with his mouth packed.
The sandwiches: Quite tasty
I hit a home run with ski sammies this weekend. I'm listing here partly for my own benefit for when I'm throwing up my hands for lack of inspiration next year. All on ciabatta bread.
Roast beast: Trader Joe's no-nitrate roast beef, horseradish sauce, goat cheese, kalamata olive tapenade, and arugula. I know it sounds like too many competing tastes, but it was really good.
Grilled chicken pesto: A little pre-trip prep required here. Chicken marinated in a little olive oil, Meyer lemon juice, and garlic and grilled the night before we left. Trader Joe's reasonably priced kosher chicken has spoiled me for anything else. Same great taste as chicken brined for the too-lazy-to-brine crowd. Pesto made (basil looking limp and a little sad this time of year, but I really wanted pesto). That morning, place sliced chicken on bread on one half of bread, top with havarti cheese, and put under the broiler for a minute to melt the cheese. Take out and spread pesto on other side of bread. This would have been good with fresh sliced red onion, but I forgot to add this.
"That ski sandwich": This is what we call my famous cambazola, prosciutto, arugula, pear, and balsamic vinaigrette sandwich (detailed in a previous post).