It’s interesting to see a mountain transform literally before our eyes. This March was an invitation to a non-optional, participation-mandatory tango sponsored by Mother Nature. We all watched Alpine’s snowpack grow, shift, and manipulate itself from what was familiar territory three weeks ago into an exquisite, foreign moonscape. The result? Astounding scenic beauty previously unknown to many; and skiing and riding simply unforgettable to all.
Much of Alpine’s bone structure is invisible at this time. What were once 30-foot volcanic walls (like the D-Chute and Keyhole area rock extrusions) have been enveloped by fathoms of snow. What was once a 2-foot wide chute reserved for adrenaline-hungry dare devils now resembles a fully established trail on the map. The visual comparisons are mind-bending and infinite.
The first two photos below are particularly interesting, in that the first was made Monday, December 27, 2010. It shows the view looking east toward Beaver Bowl, Hanging Snowfield, and Ward Peak. Summit Six can be seen in the middle; and the Keyhole Slope area can be seen in the background.
The second photo was made Monday, March 28, 2011 – from virtually the same location as the first photo, showing the same areas of terrain.
View an entire slide show of photos (slide show photos can be viewed in various sizes with captions via Alpine’s Flickr Page):