Belly Button Deep In October

Let there be no doubt – Winter is here.

For the past month or so I have, as tradition go, been carefully keeping an eye on the weather forecasts in every area that has the potential for an early season dump. A storm rolled in during the last week of October, causing chaos in several cities with torrential rains. This translates into gold for us skiers though, and this is what followed.

You didn’t have to be very high up to find this percipient come down as beautiful, dry and light snow. As the weekend came it got even colder, leaving a good 40-50cm of completely fresh powder. It was forecasted to continue throughout the Monday, before it warming up and rain would melt most of it away on Tuesday… The window of opportunity here was narrowed down to one day – a white Monday.SAMSUNG CSC

Preparations began as the stoke grew bigger. The studs came out and we changed the tires on my car on late Sunday night. The gear was brought out from the darkest corners of the closets, tested just to be sure that the boots still fit, and skis were waxed. SO CLOSE NOW!

Up and at it at 7 AM sharp, on with the ski clothes packed the car and got on the road. We were off to go skiing. Powder. A lot of it. In October. Truly an amazing feeling! Our journey took us to legendary Storlidalen, just 20minutes west of Oppdal. This valley leads in through Trollheimen, right into a glorious mountain range. This valley is very special due to its location. You got Oppdal right next to it, which is an incredibly dry place. Further west again you have Romsdalen & Sunndalsøra with a lot of alpine peaks and a lot of percipient, how ever as the roads are mostly at sea level, it too often rains up to maybe 3-400 meters. Storlidalen gets the best of both worlds. It sits at about 5-600 masl., with mountains up to 1700 masl. deep within. It can be no snow in Oppdal – but dumping in Storlidalen.

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Arriving at about 11.30, we parked by a tiny ski lift run by the local community. It was snowing quite a lot and the visibility was poor, so we headed up in the woods and skinned not very further high up than that. When the snow and the visibility is like then, the forests of Storlidalen is extremely good fun to play in. Just minutes before we arrived a group of three guys had begun on their journey up through the woods, making surely the first skin tracks of the season on that mountain. We were glad we were beaten to it… this meant freshly carved tracks, aka a lot less work for us. In fact, other than us, they three and two others at a nearby mountain, I’m pretty sure we were the only ones who had taken the trip on this October Monday. We were seven people in total skiing this amazing snow.

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The snow was deep, it was light and dry, and good times were had. I brought my Atomic Automatic skis, which was a mistake. They were simply not wide enough. We struggled to gain a lot of speed and make good turns, but it was still just amazing. Powder powder & powder. Jeremy Jones once said that he could have pages on pages with thoughts and information about the climb up a mountain, but nothing for the way down. “No words for the way down” or something. Although this day wasn’t THAT epic, I always have trouble explaining too much of the ski down a mountain, which is why I will probably never go into much more detail than the snow conditions and hazards etc.

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Noteworthy, this was a safe day considering avalanche safety. There wasn’t any base layer in the woods and barely any on the top where we skied. Almost all the snow that was there was the powder that had come the last few days. For later times I will probably begin a post with a profile of the mountain & snow conditions / avy conditions etc.

Hope you enjoy the photos along with it, and I will also post a video of the trip in a separate post.

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