Jan 15

We saw something totally new today … a cloud. For the first time on the trip we didn’t have a perfectly clear sky but rather a large cloud that poked its head above the mountain for about an hour and then disappeared, leaving the blue sky we are used to. Having said this, the wind did pick up significantly and this led to the gondola to the slopes being closed for the day. As a result, we had to shuttle bus it to the California base (about a 10 minute drive) and then spent the day on the slopes of California.

The wind on this side was still strong, particularly at the top, however it didn’t stop most of the boys remaining on the mountain for the full day!

With all skiers and boarders being more condensed on the slopes one would think that the lifts would have much longer queues … nope … we just hopped straight on as usual. The good thing was that we were all continually seeing each other around the slopes. It was great to see Nathan Dufficy (Year 9) and Nick Kovacs (Year 9) showing their creativity on the edges of the runs making the most of any little jump or groove that was there. They also took to a little racing down the slopes as well.

Jack Cullen (Year 11) met up with some locals and learnt the ins and outs of the mountain from them, while Nathan Salmon (Year 12) couldn’t be stopped as he cycled around the California runs until the very last lift of the day.

Despite some soreness, Luke McMahon (Year 8) and Luke Jolly (Year 9) remained on the slopes gathering some helmet footage and enjoying the wind protected areas of the lower California side. Similarly, a large group of the Year 9 boys headed back up the long California chairlift after lunch to really make the most of every second available to them on the mountain.

On arrival back this afternoon at 4:30pm it was straight into the spa for many of them – a venue which the Year 9 boys seem to have made their own!

For dinner we were back at the buffet of Mont Bleu – now experienced in the American buffets, the boys certainly left a dent around the serving area … particularly the deserts section with the Oreo ice cream being a favourite.

We now have just one day of skiing left and after a day today of limited terrain, the forecast for tomorrow is very positive with the winds much lower and even the possibility of some overnight snow! Sleep well … big day tomorrow!

Photo 1: Rohan Downs (Year 10) on top of the world.

Photo 2: Mark Robinson (Year 10) and Jack Foster (Year 10) enjoy the ride up the mountain.

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