Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Majesty

The seasons abound.
Beer - Breakfast of Champions

The morning brought with it the promise of another excellent day at Coronet Peak, and for the most part it delivered. But what the day also couriered in late afternoon, was one excellent snowstorm. Around 3:15 I headed up the Coronet Peak chairlift with IG and Matt. The snow and ice was driving horizontally across our faces; Ian had his face covered by a balaclava, but Matt and I held our heads in and our hands while the wind did its best to apply its own unique facial scrub.

What was to be my last run of the day was almost what you'd call a whiteout. You couldn't see the terrain changes - before you knew it you'd be right on top of a mogul, or off piste. Half way down the M1 trail I came across a medical party putting some girls right leg in a splint.
Right there and then I decided that it was a good time to stop for the day: IG and Matt went up again. The story of that lift ride was one of even more discomfort; frankly I thought they were both nuts.

Around 4pm we decided to pack up and head down the hill; by this stage the snow was falling heavily and we were beginning to wonder if we shouldn't have left earlier. We decided against chains; although it looked marginal we knew that the snow would probably peter out before we traveled too far down the mountain: we were sorely mistaken; it was still snowing heavily at the bottom, and on through to Queenstown.

View from the top carpark, down the mountain

We were about to experience something magical; snow to lake level.

Snow at the Shotover Bridge.

The downside of this majestic event, was our inability to get to our rented accommodation - we were well and truly snowed in. Parking the Merc in a near by camping ground we tramped through the snow to our house: you guessed it - the power was out.

Basecamp - the Merc abandoned, our house in the distant mist

So complete with wet shoes and socks, we did the only thing we could; we trudged off to the nearest pub for a beer and a steak.

Turns out the day knew what it was up to all along.


Di Mackey said...

OH.MY.GOD. I am so envious!!!

Seriously envious.

Mark J said...

Yeah - but you've forgotten the wet shoes and socks; kind of what I'd imagine weeing your pants would feel like - very uncool :)

Di Mackey said...

Wet shoes and socks ... piffle. That's what the red wine cure is all about silly billy.

Still envious, specially since viewing the pic on your next post.