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Monday, October 31, 2005

Snow in Golden BC

Early snowfall at Chatter Creek SnowCat Skiing Golden has been getting snow flurries. Daytime freezing snow level has been about 1200 meters, dropping to the valley floor (780 meters) overnight. The Chatter Creek Lodge elevation is about 1640 meters, about 900 meters above Golden. The photo to the right is a recent shot of the ridge above the lodge.

On Nov 5/6, Blackcomb Mountain at Whistler is having it's earliest opening in many years. This bodes well for early season skiing throughout BC. Blackcomb will commence daily operations of Nov 11, a far cry from last year! Think snow! Think powder skiing!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Welcome to the Chatter News

There's snow at the lodge and things are "heating up". The Chatter News, our client's view of life and cat skiing at Chatter Creek, has never had so many visitors! Over at Chatter, we notice that bookings are pretty well "chocka" mid-season, and are filling up in December, as well.

Powder skiing at Chatter Creek If you don't know what snowcat skiing is, look at our Cat Skiing Articles, a photo-essay that covers it all. The links at the top of each page connect to the many parts of the Chatter News. We have photos on all aspects of Chatter Creek; the lodges, snowcats, guests, terrain and even travel information.

Our Cat Skiing Terrain and Ski Run Index provide a illustrated tour of one of the largest cat skiing tenures in the world. Few others offer both the variety and extent of high elevation glacier skiing, huge alpine bowls and extensive tree skiing. Your Chatter Editor has had about 10 trips to Chatter Creek and has yet to see half the place. With 238 sq km, it's huge!

Scroll down to see our recent posts or follow some of the many links to our collections of ski photography. There's lots to find! About 40 pages like this one of photos and description, plus monthly archives. You won't run out. The photo above is a John Dougall shot of a guest enjoying the Chatter Creek powder skiing. We hope you enjoy the Chatter News.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Ski Photos by John Dougall

John Dougall photographs high fliers at La Grave, France
High flying near La Grave, France. Chatter Creek photographer, John Dougall directs traffic and takes photos from the road on the very last pitch of the col du Galibier. This is where cyclist, Lance Armstrong has for years started to take his enormous leads grinding up these steep hills in the Tour de France. In a former life, John lived a few miles from here.

Powder skiing photography by John Dougall In this life, John takes professional ski photos of cat skiing guests powder skiing the champagne powder at Chatter Creek. For many more recent ski photos by John, follow this link to our photo gallery, Ski Photograpy by John Dougall.

John's ski photos make great momentos of powder skiing trips to Chatter Creek, not to mention being a bit of an ego booster hanging on the office wall.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Snow at Chatter Creek

The lodge has been getting rain, and lots of it. However its been "dumping" in the alpine, and the snow line is at the top of the Home Run cut block, just above the lodge. Powder skiing at Chatter Creek is not far away!

Overnight, the freezing level is dropping to SX6, or below. That's the point on the Chatter Creek Main (road) just below the Nose, a few km below Vertebrae lodge. During the day, it rises to about 6000 ft. The Golden Weather now reports a low of -3degC, so things at the lodge must be cooling off.

Weeks of heavy rain has played havoc with Life on the Chatter Creek Road. The mud has made the road impassable to all vehicles, even the Hummer. Until the freezing level drops to harden up the road, no supplies will be getting through to the lodge, not even fuel. Ah, the joys of operating a large backcountry lodge!

Early winter snowfall at Chatter Creek Snow at the Lodge seems a little later than in prior years. In late September 2002, when Vertebrae lodge was being constructed, the first heavy snow at lodge level came a few days before the roof was completed. Days of shovelling snow and scraping ice from the floor of the dining hall resulted. Here's a photo from a year ago, showing snow at lodge level in October, 2004. It's a bit dreary, but things brighten right up by the end of November, when there is a good snow cover. Scroll down to our "December Snow Story" for more about early season snow.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Mark Gallup Photographs Chatter Creek

Mark Gallup photographs Ryan Oakden at Chatter Creek It's been a while since we've looked at Mark Gallup's classic ski photography from Chatter Creek. Our Mark Gallup photo gallery has a collection of great shots of Ryan Oakden, Brian Savard and Chris Collins playing in the Chatter Creek powder snow. A number of Mark's great photos grace the walls of Vertebrae Lodge.     Click on any image to enlarge it. Use the browser's "Back" button to return.

Last of the Summer Wine

Rear of Vertebrae Ski Lodge at Chatter CreekDog Days of Summer. Prelude to powder skiing.

A late-summer shot of the rear of the bedroom wing of Vertebrae Lodge. The hot tub deck has been tarted up with improvements to the railings and the outside stairs. It seems that the skirting over the craw space has been brought to the outside edge of the deck.

For more information on recent construction activities at Chatter Creek, take a look at our "Summer at Chatter Creek" photo gallery.

More about Cat Skiing in Chile

PowderQuest has left a comment about Ski Arpa on our August 26 posting to the Chatter News. PowderQuest runs a variety of ski tours in South America and used the Chatter News to pass on a little information and history about Ski Arpa (and to give themselves a little "plug"). Scroll down, or look at our August archive to learn a little more about cat skiing south of the equator.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

South Park at Chatter Creek Cat Skiing
The large bowl known as South Park, located southwest of Vertebrae Lodge, between MCO and Lakeview. South Park backs on the new Oyster Bowl, although there is no established direct route between the two. Follow the links above to more information about these powder skiing areas at Chatter Creek.

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