Tiehack solitude | AspenTimes.com

Tiehack solitude

Janet Urquhart

Tuesday’s morning snow report claimed 4 new inches on top at Buttermilk (and Aspen and Highlands), with Snowmass boasting a respectable 6 fresh inches.Nothing epic, but enough to get me out the office door before the lifts cranked up. A perfect day for what I hoped would be weekday solitude at Tiehack and a little erring on the side of caution with the measuring stick. It was, on both counts.Javelin, groomed the prior night, boasted the requisite 4 inches of bliss atop a creamy carpet. But Tiehack Trail, which the cats must have hit first, had a solid 6 inches and probably more, it seemed to me.I sat alone on the Summit Express shortly after the lift ops dropped the rope across the entry gate. For once, I’d made the right call on a powder day. Buttermilk was nearly empty, but the handful of early birds were all making tracks to the Tiehack side. I’ll bet those with fewer demands on their day were still making fresh tracks at lunchtime.It was one of those muffled mornings, when the plodding ride up the Tiehack chair doesn’t seem interminably long, even though it is. There is the gentle sway of the chair, the snow collecting silently in the trees and the generous patches of yet-untracked snow that can be spied from the chair and committed to memory.With only an hour to ski, I chose my runs judiciously. The chair gives you four runs an hour – no dawdling.Then it was time to head down main Buttermilk, which had been a mistake to ignore, as it turned out. Fine pillowy bumps and even deeper snow greeted me on Friedl’s and No Problem. A mental note for next time.Today’s report: This morning’s snow report notes 10 new inches have fallen at Snowmass in the past 48 hours, 9 at Aspen Mountain, 8 at Aspen Highlands and 7 at Buttermilk. Skies were clear overnight.

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