dave norona/for metro vancouver


Dave enjoys being submerged in the light fluffy powder on Grouse Mountain.

It was 7 a.m. when I crawled out of bed and looked outside of my bedroom window. Wow! Mother Nature had covered the whole Lower Mainland with a thick, deep blanket of light, fluffy snow.

I ran through the house grabbing clothing and stuffing my face with food before jumping into my van and heading to the base of Grouse Mountain. On the way over, the radio was already letting students know that there would be no school and describing the hundreds of accidents already taking place. I was heading to the right spot.

Myself and the other 50 eager snowboarders and skiers waited patiently in line at the Grouse Mountain Skyride ready to take the ride to the top of the mountain.

As they started loading, everyone came to life.

As we rose to the top, the cheering for the 25 cm of new snow became deafening.

Outside I quickly donned my G3 El Hombre fat skis, zipped up my jacket and cranked my iPod before heading off. As I dropped into Upper Buckhorn, the deep light snow engulfed my whole body. I ripped down the side getting air on all the little bumps that protruded from the snow.

The Olympic Express Quad had just opened and I was its first passenger, other than the ski patrol of course. In three minutes I was whisked to the top where the ski patrol was just opening Inferno.

This Black Diamond run is usually littered with moguls; however, today there was nothing more than a deep layer of snow covering the entire slope. I scouted my line and headed straight down as the powder flew into my goggles and mouth. Hoots and hollers from riders on the chair became louder as I passed beneath it, flowing in and out of the trees looking like a giant snowman, and finally emerging at the bottom with a huge smile on my face.

Taking the chair back to the top, I watched as young shredders carved up the run sending snow flying in every direction. I don’t think they were missing sitting in a classroom today. The steep run of Purgatory was next and again I was getting fresh untracked snow as I darted in and out of the trees. My skis seemed to just float over the snow and all I had to do was point them in the right direction and sit back and enjoy the ride!

This season has been amazing and if you’re keen to get into skiing or snowboarding then check out Grouse’s evening lesson packages to get you started.

For those who already shred, don’t forget to sign up for the Oakley Jam sessions every Friday night and if you are looking for the best deal in skiing and snowboarding, look for Grouse’s Y2Play pass to emerge sometime in early March.

This pass enables you to ski for the rest of this season and all of next season for one low price. Check it all out at www.grousemountain.com.


gear guide

G3 Reverend Ski

Description: Rip up the powder on these beautiful fat skis from G3. The 126-93-114 dimensions allow it to float over the powder and carve a sweet turn on firm snow or anything in between.

Price: $655

Where to find it: www.genuineguidegear.com

Nau Asylum Pant

Description: This conscious outdoor company from Oregon builds some of the nicest pieces I have ever tried. The Asylum pant is light, flexible and bomber for those epic powder sessions.

Price: $278

Where to find it: www.nau.com

Black Diamond Carbon Poles

Description: These feathery light carbon/aluminum poles from Black Diamond provide a balanced swing and a FlickLock® adjustment mechanism that won’t slip or ice up.

Price: $99.99

Where to find it: www.blackdiamondequipment.com

Salomon WW Diadem Ski socks

Description: Keep your digits warm and comfy with Salomon’s women specific mid-weight ski/board sock. This blend of polypropylene, acrylic and merino wool creates an awesome wicking sock to keep you dry all day.

Price: $13.50

Where to find it: www.salomonski.com

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