Kitzbuhler Alpen Arrival

Heading toward the Kitzbuhler Alpen was very scenic.

Some of the mountain scenery we saw today.

Today we left Corvara and drove to the Kitzbuhler Alpen, which is our hotel in Oberndorf Austria.  This will be our take off point for the resorts that we are going to be skiing in Austria.  I will be reporting on our trips that we take in this area over the next 6 days – so stay tuned for all the adventures.

Not much to report on today.  Drove over 4 hours to get here from Corvara and saw some great scenery. It was interesting as at the start of our trip we drove through several villages that we had skied to doing the routes around the Sella Ronda and on our James Bond ski run day.  It actually took us longer to get to these villages in the car then it took us to get there when we were skiing. The road curves all over the place, but the lifts take you in a far more direct route over the mountain and then you ski right down. Skiing is the way to get around in these mountains in the winter for sure. Read More…

Colfosco Ski Resort – Day 6

More unique views at the Colfosco ski resort.

Colfosco was a great place to ski.

Today was our last day skiing Italy, so we took an easy day and skied the Colfosco Ski Resort. It is a small resort whose runs were all in the sunshine – so we cruised the slopes and enjoyed the sun.  We stopped at a hutte at the top of one of the runs, had lunch, enjoyed the sunshine and the magnificent views of the surrounding rocks that towered above us. Really great to say the least.

Once done with lunch, we headed back over to Corvara, and half of the Poo crew quit, but Sue, Jim and I forged on. We headed over to a place called Pralongia, which was accessed by a gondola or two and a few lifts.  We had not skied this region of the larger area here, so we had to get it in.  We certainly have not skied all that is Read More…

James Bond Ski Run – Day 5

We found this on our way to the James Bond ski run.

Jimmy’s Hutte on our way to Ortisi.

Today we headed over to do a run known as the James Bond ski run.  Bond skied it in the movie “Live and Let Die” and it was filmed above the town of Ortisi.  The run, named Secada, is off the backside and it is over 7 miles long from top to bottom.  We left Corvara and headed over several ridges, taking gondolas and lifts out of the valleys we had to ski into.  One of the ridges we went over had a Hutte on top named Jimmy’s Hutte.  We didn’t stop there, but we had to take a picture – as Jimmy is one of the Poo crew.

We kept cruising and once we were in the Ortisi valley, we took a train that went underground for quite a ways before letting us out near the lifts.  We headed to the Read More…

Marmolada Adventure- Day 4

A little side trip on our route to the Marmolada.

The rocks go all around you here at the Boe’.

Today we did a trip to the Marmolada, which is the highest peak in the Dolomites. On our way there we took a side trip to go to a place known as the Boe’. Once up there, you are really surrounded by rocks at the top and it’s really cool. We had to see it, and once we did, we continued on our trip to the Marmolada.

To get there, you have to ski over several ridges and then down into a deep valley to catch the trams that take you to the top.  It’s almost 6000 feet from the bottom of the valley to the top, and it takes 3 different trams to get you there. This adventure reminded me of a poem I wrote one time, after listening to my Bro Steve tell me about his adventures while skiing here in Europe.  One of the lines of the poem is something like “you have to take a tram, chair and Poma to get to the top of that momma.”  You can read the poem from an earlier post by going here. Read More…

Sella Ronda Orange Route – Day 3

Sella Ronda Orange route had unique views.

Jim on top, taking in the views

We did the Sella Ronda Orange route today, which is going around the Sella massif in the clockwise direction. This direction is longer and more challenging then the Green route. The views are different as well, and there are some spectacular ones for sure.

We took it easy and enjoyed the views and the runs, which were all hard packed with some patches of ice randomly mixed in. (one of my least favorite conditions to ski)  The coverage on these runs is really quite good with what little natural snow that has fallen. It was sunny and still cold but the bright sun brought the pilgrims out in droves!! It was really crowded in a number of areas, and we were playing dodge the pilgrim throughout the day. We are getting very adept at this, as  it has been Read More…

Pralongia Ski Area – Day 2

Heading out to the Pralongia Ski area for the day.

The Poo Crew – Bro, Bob, Steve, Jim and Sue.

We skied in the Pralongia Ski area above Corvara today for our second day in Europe.  It was clear and sunny, but again very cold.  The area we skied in was in the sun all day and it brought the “fair weather pilgrims” out in volume.  This lead to several incidents where Steve Kinney and Sue almost got taken out by blazing pilgrims. It would not have been pretty, but we thankfully avoided any disasters.

We had our full Corvara compliment of the Poo crew today.  This crew consists of Steve Hamilton (aka Bro – the happy target of most of my jibs), Bob Spidel,  Steve Kenney, Jim Brunson, Sue Hamilton and your Honorable scribe – Mark Hamilton. Read More…

Corvara Ice Station Zebra

Corvara Ice station zebra was quite an adventure.

Bob and Sue on our first Gondola Ride.

We skied our first day in Europe today and had a great time. We skied around the Sella Ronda, doing the green route, which is the counter-clockwise direction.  You had to stay on piste, as there is not enough snow to go anywhere else. The snow was hard but they’ve made snow regularly, so it was very easy to ski. The views were spectacular, changing as you went over each ridge, but let me tell you, it was eye-freezing cold.  The sun was out most of the time, but the title Corvara Ice Station Zebra very aptly describes the adventure. Everyone was fully fluffied up except Bro Steve,as of course he’s too tough to care.  I assure you though that he participated in the whimpering and whining that went  on in the bottom of some of those ravines. Read More…

Kirkwood Snow Day – Day 11

You need to fluffy up on a Kirkwood snow day.

I was fluffied and Bro wasn’t. So sad!

What a fantastic Kirkwood Snow day yesterday. Had about 10 inches of new on the ground, and additionally it snowed buckets all day long. This is the kind of skiing I love the most.  Fresh snow on each run, with a good base underneath.  What could be better?  It was the best day of skiing Bro and I have had in Tahoe for at least 4 years.  It was sweeeeet!!

We arrived at Timbercreek parking lot at about 9:20am.  It was snowing and blowing, so in typical Kirkwood snow day fashion, they had limited lifts open.  They had 1, 5 and 7 open – which really doesn’t give much access to the mountain.  At the lodge I fluffied up in preparation for the blowing snow, but Steve realized he had left his best face fluffy in the car. All day I had to hear about how it was my fault that the snow was ripping the skin off his face.  He was just jealous because I had a nice skin-protecting fluffy on and he was getting shredded. (the truth is he forgot his fluffy because he had to piss so bad he couldn’t think of anything else – the ole grapefruit into a walnut syndrome strikes again)  I have admit that the wind really was whipping and the snow was biting – so his whining was justified – but a man can only take so much whining before he’s got to say “shut up and suck it up dude!”.  It didn’t help though. Read More…

Kirkwood Family Day – Days 9 and 10

Kirkwood family ski day was a lot of fun.

Charlee between Bro and I on her first lift ride.

Had my Brother-in- law, his wife and their 9 year old granddaughter up over the weekend, so of course we had to take a Kirkwood family day to do a little skiing. These folks live in Fresno, so were not used to the snow – so we got them all geared up and had a great weekend.  Charlee, (the granddaughter) had her first experience in snow in the yard when they arrived Friday.  Saturday we went sledding (even Grandpa Steven and Grandma Hope took a ride on the sleds) and Sunday we went skiing – all firsts for Charlee.

Bro and I headed up to Kirkwood early and took in a few runs on the backside (finally getting there this year) and then met the troops at Timbercreek Lodge at @11:30 am to get Charlee rolling.  Lisa (my wife) had been getting her all grooved in on getting in and out of her skis, and when Bro and I arrived we all went right to the Magic Carpet lift to get up the hill.  Charlee had that perfected in no time and so we all jumped on Lift 9 for her first lift ride to the top of the Bunny hill. Read More…

Kirkwood Backside – Day 8

Kirkwood backside never opened on friday due to the wind.

Sad faced Bro. No backside for us.

We headed up to ski the Kirkwood backside yesterday, but we were bamboozled by the weather.  Well, Kirkwood had a hand in this as well. as on Monday last week we heard from another skier at Kirkwood that they were going to open the backside on Wednesday.  Then on Tuesday, Coop put on his Facebook post that they were going to open on Thursday.  Then Wednesday Coop said on his Facebook post that they were going to open the backside 9am Friday – so Bro and I changed our plans about going up on Thursday and figured we would go on Friday for the opening.  Well, it turns out they opened the backside at noon on Thursday.  Like – what the…??? Then we finally get there on Friday – and the backside was on wind hold and never opened. Read More…