I went to Mountain High today (Nov 8, 2009 - Sunday) pretty much all day.
It was the first time I touched board to snow this season, and it was not bad.
Here's my review of the mountain in case anyone wants to go in the next few weeks and get some early bird boarding in...
I arrived at 7:45am right before they opened, and there were about 20 cars already there.
I ended up leaving around 2:30pm when the snow conditions got too wet/sloppy.
Current weekend hours: 8am-4pm
Current early bird lift tickets: $40 (8 hrs), $35 (4 hrs)
Gear rental: $35 (Boots, bindings, and board)
-Clean, fully stocked shop with gear, wax, binding screws, etc. for sale. (Gear = expen$ive)
-Plenty of picknick tables available indoors and outdoors
-Plenty of flat screen tv's showing NFL games indoors
-Traffic there and down was light and manageable
-Parking was plentiful, even in the afternoon
-Fully staffed, no lines were ever really long (food, lift lines, rentals, etc.)
-Food: only outdoor grill was open, and only burgers and hotdogs were being sold (pricey)
-Drinks available: Monster, sodas, water, wine, various brands of beer (MGD, Bud, Bud Light, etc.)
-One primary run open from the top of West Resort to the base; there was only one way down which incorporated the following trails: Upper Chisolm (blue) - Lower Chisolm (blue) - Cruiser (green)
-From top to bottom there were about 4-5 boxes/rails, small jumps
-For newbies, you can catch a short lift that takes you only a partial way up the mountain to the top of Cruiser (green) for an easy ride down
-All runs were well groomed
-From 8am to 10am, the run was not crowded and the snow was excellent for carving
-From 10am to 12noon, the run began to get slightly crowded and only light dodging of downed riders was needed
from about 12noon to close: dodging downed riders was the biggest challenge of getting down the mountain during this time
-Lift lines were decent...no more than a 4-5 min wait all day
-From 8am to 12noon the snow was hard packed, slightly icy, and for the most part predictable
-Temperatures in the morning were cool (40's), but no sweaters/thermals neccessary
-I wore a long sleeve Under Armour shirt and a medium thickness snowboard jacket and I was hot by 11am
-Runs were well groomed, but towards the afternoon that changed quickly
-Around 12noon temperatures got into the 50-60's and the snow began to melt
-From 12noon to 4pm (close), the snow got very wet and slushy
-Wet snow was still very ride-able, but if you eat it all of your gear will be pretty wet
-My gloves and socks were soaked
-From 12noon to 4pm natural terrain features (dirt, twigs, pine-cones, ROCKS, gravel) began to emerge from underneath the snow in various areas
-This was not happening in a lot of areas, just a few patches here and there, not a huge deal
-I did get some rock dings on the bottom of my board though, so if you have new board it may not be a good idea to bring it to Mount High just yet
-All in all, the snow conditions were great in the morning, okay around noon, and got poor by 2pm
I drove just shy of 4 hours for just one day of riding.
And for $40 bucks, I'd say it was worth it!
Hopefully we get some colder weather and El Nino hits soon so they open Mt. High and Bear Mountain 100%!