Well with the ________ Virus shutdowns and sunshine beckoning in the mountains, my buddy Bruce and I decided to take a snowshoe up to Bullion Basin.
Our initial fears of full parking lots at Crystal evaporated with the shutdown of the resort, so we were able to pull up close to the bottom of the route.
Crystal has added signs to a bunch of snowshoe trails they've been advertising and the signage is different than the official names of the trails, but I was able to decipher their maps and got us on the straight path. Glorious virus-killing sunshine greeted us as we headed up the hill.
And as a bonus, we pretty much had the trails to ourselves (only saw 8 people all day).
Higher up we had views of Crystal-- only a few Ski Patrollers out pulling gear off the mountain.
The avalanche danger was rated as "considerable" so we scoped out the few sections of trail where we crossed the bottom of a few avalanche paths and then sprinted across them with no issues. A few pinwheels had come down on Sunday but nothing early in the morning.
Made great time to Bullion Basin and stopped for lunch. Skies were gorgeous blue and the slopes above called to me to keep going, but we had a time limit, so we had a quick lunch and headed down hill.
We did see more snow movement (pinwheels) on the way down and passed our Beta onto the few people who were heading up, but with good safe practices I figured they would be safe.
About 8 feet deep up at the Basin, 12" of compact powder on the top of a crust layer. No evidence of slabby-behavior (no visible cracks or small slabs) but as the sun warmed up we were seeing a few "pinwheels" down the hill. Conditions were EXCELLENT for snowshoeing!
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