Deep snow, freedom , unpretentious mountain, Pagosa Hot Springs
The drive, dreaded flat spots in deep snow, inadvertently riding into the wilderness
What an interesting mountain.. freakish storms, deep amazing powder, no lift lines, only a few ropes on the whole mountain.. the sidecountry experience. The longest full season in Colorado, the most snow.. short of maybe Silverton.. cheap lift tickets.. endless good things. The Waterfall area/Alberta lift side of the mountain is an absolute gem. Endless mellow glades, tree runs, cliffs, powder, with no boundary ropes. If you want to bomb at fullspeed through a powder glade and huck off an unmarked 30 foot cliff.. hit the Waterfall. Until you get back to the lift its easy to forget youre actually at a resort. No the vertical drop isn't great, the best steeps are hike to.. and there are some flat spots that suck to hike out of when you dig one in three feet of fresh. No ropes though! You can zigzag in and out of trees and rock lines anywhere on the mountain. Know where you are at and look for signs! It's not hard to ride off into the wilderness when all your'e thinking about is how perfect your line is. The drive can be intense.. Wolf Creek Pass can get gnarly, but the snow is almost always worth it. Chill out at the hot springs in nearby Pagosa Springs afterward. Ride the powder, lose the lines and attitude of the trendy resorts.