On a powder day at Fernie Alpine Resort, doing laps on White Pass quad is where you want to be. That’s because the top of the chairlift provides access into Currie Bowl, which is — in my opinion — the best of the resort’s five bowls. There are north-facing steeps that hold the snow long after a storm, nice gladed areas for playing chicken with the trees, and open groomers perfect for carving big GS turns.
And, in the order of what opens when after new snow falls, Currie usually follows mid-morning behind Timber Bowl and Siberia Bowl. If you can time it to be unloading from White Pass chair at the exact moment ski patrol takes down Currie’s sign line, it will be the best run you ski all day.
This happened to me for the second time on Sunday morning. I was perfectly content skiing by braille (a.k.a. visibility was poor) down Pillow Talk in Timber Bowl, finding powder stashes in open areas that the white-out averse had missed in their pursuit of trees for contrast. But when another lap brought me back to the top of White Pass and I saw the crowd gathered, I knew Currie’s terrain was about to get tracked up. No sooner had I exited the lift than the patrolman gave the thumbs up and it was a Chinese downhill into the pow, with me following a line of skiers so I could see where I was going. As soon as I hit Currie Glades, with trees for reference, I split from the pack and carved lovely arcs into the boot-deep snow, whooping with glee and not stopping until I was half way down.
After that epic run, my day was pretty much done. Thanks for the new snow, Griz!