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Fall Time = Waiting Time

posted Sep 28, 2015, 9:02 PM by admin matsuski   [ updated Sep 30, 2015, 9:16 PM by Unknown user ]

I have an odd love-hate relationship with fall; to the point I might say it’s my least favorite time of the year. Daylight is waning, the weather can be excessively wet and my wife has to go back to work, not to mention that I have to play the “waiting game” until skiing. Now many of you may disagree and reply, “but Hans, the fall colors are soooo beautiful!” Blah, you can take your fall colors, cover them in white and then I’ll be happy.

Nevertheless, I head out and get wet. Whether it be hunting in Delta, or picking berries in Hatcher, we try to get out and stretch the legs in some way. So when the tops of the neighboring peaks began to show signs of old age (white on top) I knew we’d be heading up to check it out.

Which brings us to last weekend; Saturday brought more rain, but more snow up high. Sunday brought promising skies and so we began to suit up… for a hike in the snow. It should be noted that our time for preparation for outings has vastly increased since the appearance of the offspring. In fact, I would surmise the ratio for preparing for outings and the time of actual outing approaches 1:1. So it’s no surprise that our lazy Sunday, “crack of noon” departure times, PC (post children) have turned into “Is it too late, should we be even going.” Thankfully we departed and headed for the hills.

April Bowl in Hatcher Pass was our intended destination. Upon reaching the Pass proper, several inches of moist snow lay waiting. Although our son, having turned seven months-old the day prior, was born in the winter months, I consider this day his first snow day. The boy was just about as excited as I. Nothing could have made me happier (his reaction, not the snow…sort of). As we hiked up to gain purchase, he giggled the whole way, not even minding the chill air.

Our hike down was a bit stressful with the packed snow, steep slopes and precious cargo. But it was made easier knowing our son would be enjoying snow many more times in the future.

I will leave you with this, if the fall is still dragging on when this reaches your mailbox, know the first ski will be all that more enjoyable when it does finally arrive… or at least that is what I’ll keep telling myself in the meantime.


Having seen snow already this season and having a keen sense of all things snow, I can assure one of these things to be true: the snow this year will be early and often, we will all have record number of ski days or the Mat-Su Ski Club will start grooming at Independence Mine as soon as there is skiable snow (I am leaning towards the first one). MSSC has already prepositioned grooming equipment at the Mine and brushed and marked the loops. Signage has been emplaced in the usual spots to help errant skiers. Hopefully we all will be rendezvousing there shortly. As snow makes its way down, we will groom Archangel Road and the trails at Government Peak also as soon as there enough to ski and probably remove our grooming equipment from Independence Mine in December.

Annual Meeting

Every year for the past few I have proselytized about the MSSC Annual Membership Meeting and the great ski event information and speakers… oh and the free swag giveaways. This year it is currently scheduled for Friday 30 October at 6:30 PM at the Palmer Depot. Currently upgrades are being completed at the GPRA center, but if they are completed early the Annual meeting will occur at GPRA. Please check the website for updates. Be there or miss out on the hottest event of this fall!

Preseason Training

If you are a member of the MSSC, you should have received an email advertising our Clubs preseason ski training. Our great in-house coach, Daryl Farrens, has put together this twice weekly program running through the end of October, which includes a myriad of dry land training exercises to get the eager beaver ready for the upcoming season. If you have missed out this season, put it on the calendar for next year and commence hill bounding now to catch up to Daryl and his attendees.

Skiing Paraphernalia

Looking for an anniversary or birthday present, or maybe just want to show off your support of the club? Look no further than your Local MSSC for the answer. This year the Club has ski ties (sleeves) for $4 per pair and ski buffs for $5, both showing off the highly fashionable ski club logo. Available at the Annual Meeting or see a board member for details.

Upcoming Events

Race To The Outhouse Saturday 7 Nov 10:30 AM FREE Classic or Skating 5KM at Independence Mine. This is a low key opportunity for Racers to “blow the carbon out”, in preparation for the serious races to come.

Ski Tour at Independence Mine. Sunday 8 Nov 1 PM. Great for recreational skiers, we will include an orientation on the different loops and skier etiquette. Participants need to be able to handle the mile long 300’ vertical climb to get to the mine area.

Moonlight Ski 21 Nov 7 PM Independence Mine.

Adult ski lessons for classic and skate techniques will begin about the 1st week of December. Keep checking the Mat-Su Ski Club's website for update information regarding days and times.