Early season eagerness
There were ski tracks on the steep stretch of road leading down to the Upper Beehive Basin Trailhead on Sunday, Nov. 4. From there, skin tracks ran from the parking lot up into higher elevations and deeper snow. A Subaru parked in the lot had a bumpersticker summing up the current season with a mixed message. The slogan was one part early-turns eagerness, one part politics.
It read: “Make America Deep Again.”
Over on Lone Mountain a couple days earlier, Big Sky Ski Patrol reported enough snow to send a significant slide down Big Couloir. It happened around 11 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 2 and was described as a naturally triggered soft slab avalanche.
“After four inches of new snow yesterday, a natural avalanche occurred today in the Big Couloir at Big Sky Resort,” reported ski patrol. “The avalanche was at 80-90 percent of maximum run-out path, into the Bowl, and broke to the ground in some spots. No backcountry travelers were in the area of the avalanche at that time.”
Further reports noted new snow fell and was drifted into slabs overlying older, hard layers of snow from October. The resort is closed and no people were threatened by the avalanche.
The resort issued a statement following the slide, reminding everyone opening day is Nov. 22, and that, “Big Sky Ski Patrol advises all backcountry users to exercise caution in these early season conditions.”