I had a great day at Mount Ashland today, although Ariel was shut down for the day due to high winds. This was my second ever visit to Mount Ashland, and on my first it was a bluebird, groomer day. Today's conditions were the polar opposite of my last visit, with extremely high winds and deep snow blanketing the hill. The main chair in service today was the Windsor chair, which provided access to the entire lower mountain, including many runs through extremely well spaced trees which were not in my repertoire when I first came here two years ago.
Although the winds were very strong in the parking lot, the ski runs on the lower part of Mount Ashland are very well shielded from the winds by stands of trees between the trails - and of course the runs in the trees are even more well protected from wind. The powder was deep today, and fluffy enough for rooster tails down the lift line. I had a great time testing conditions all over the available terrain, traversing to the Ariel chair line and the trees beyond, and down each trail across the face to the boundary on the parking lot side above the lodge.
After checking out the hill, I found the powder to be in good shape all over, so I kept going straight through lunch time, enjoying a complete lack of any lines while the majority went in to warm up. I finally decided to take a break at two o'clock, and as the weather began to deteriorate decided to hit the road for the long drive to Lakeview.