Day 6 – Cypress Mountain Opening Weekend (Dec 14, 2008)

This morning I got up bright and early and headed up to Cypress Mountain, the home of the 2010 Winter Olympics Freestyle skiing and snowboarding venue.  The new Lodge is done; well…the outside and the offices anyway.

Cypress Mountain Lodge

Cypress Mountain Lodge

The washrooms are definitely an upgrade to the Black Mountain Lodge.  The Retail shop seem to be smaller than before and the items are exactly the same as before: Cypress Brand everything…plus some oakley googles and Heli Henson Ski wear.  I still like Grouse Mountain shop better because it has more varieties and it’s got popular brands for snowboarders such as Quicksilver and Burton. ( I enjoy window shopping in the warm shop when it is freezing outside.)

As expected, it was really crowded, I had to park in the second parking lot, and I was up on the Mountain pretty early.  By next week (Christmas Holidays) people will be parking almost all the way to the Cross Country area and beyond.  It will be an hour walk to the resort from the car, 2 hour wait to buy a ticket, another 2 hour wait to get on a chair lift, and if you need rentals, even longer waits.  There will still be tons and tons of people that go to ski resorts during the Christmas season because for a lot of people, that’s the only time they can enjoy the holiday season with their family and their kids.

There were some brave souls that came to Cypress Mountain not willing to line up with the crowd.  They brought their split boards and snowshoes, ready to tackle the fresh powder beyond the ropes.  They, however, were not properly prepared because only 3 out of 5 riders had back packs on, which means 2 people are without Avi gear.

Backcountry Skiers and Snowboarders at Cypress Mountain

As I expected, there was a huge line up at Eagle Express Quad Chair on Black Mountain.  The lines were about a 10-20 minutes wait, which is not too bad.

Cypress Mountain Opening Weekend 2008

Cypress Mountain Opening Weekend 2008

The one thing I noticed from the above picture is the clothing color choice is completely different from the ones from Grouse Mountain (Day 5 – Grouse Mountain Opening Day).  It seems like a completely different crowd because most people are wearing dark jacket with dark pants whereas at Grouse Mountain, most skiers and snowboarders were wearing bright color jackets and pants with lots of bold patterns.

It made me think…

“A) is the crowd at Cypress more conservative than Grouse with their color choice ?

or

B) does riders wear different choice of clothing for different occasions? (i.e bright color for the Park, dull color for the groomed run…)”.

feel free to comment below what you think.

I did photographed a few people with bold color clothing…very few.

Cypress Mountain Snowboarder

Cypress Mounatin Snowboarder

and a few more photos of snowboarders from Cypress Mountain…

Cypress Mountain Snowboarder

Cypress Mountain Snowboarder

Panorama and the Olympic Boarder-cross trails were open and pretty tracked out.  I was glad all the old jumps from last year were still there.  The side of the hill was completely untouched so I try to get my board to go on to the right hand side of Panorama to get some air.  Instead of getting air, my board sank into the powder, all 96 centimeters of it and I fell into waist deep powder.  It was amazing !! It just look a long time to swim back to the groomed run.

After a few hours at the green and blue run, I decided to go check out the park.  Since I had such a great time at the Grouse Mountain terrain Park yesterday, I figure Cypress must have set up the park as well.  I was disappointed when I saw the park crew coming out of their hut with shovels just going up for the first time to do some digging.

Cypress Mountain Terrain Park Staffs

Cypress Mountain Terrain Park Staffs

The Terrain Park Staff has new uniforms.  I hope their Park this year will be even better with the Olympics coming and all.  Cypress Mountain created a Media Volunteer Program, which is similar to Grouse Mountain’s blogospondents, but with videos instead of words.

Here’s another picture of the new Cypress Creek Lodge and Black Mountain where the Olympics will be held.

Cypress Creek Lodge

Instructors

As for the instructors, it’s very similar to Grouse, I only saw 2 lessons been taught today.  There were some trainings happening but there were not too much to do except putting up fences and helping beginners that were having trouble on the hill.  I hope they have been handing out their business cards.  It’s a perfect chance to promote themselves by giving free tips.  A friend of mine got a private lesson request on his first day of work 2 years ago simply because he saw a struggling beginner snowboarder and decided to stop and helped the beginner get down the hill safely.

Cypress Mountain Instructors

Cypress Mountain Instructors

Cypress Mountain Instructors

Cypress Mountain Instructors

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