If yesterday was far better the expected, today was worse than seemed possible early on. When I emerged from under the duvet, it was a warm, grey morning. Nothing unusual for the last week of March.
It is of course the Snowopen Air concert this weekend. Local politics have moved it from a natural amphitheatre at Scheidegg to a small and exposed site at Mannlichen. It was indeed exposed this morning. The benign conditions in the village gave way to a strong, cold wind at the top, which whistled around the cable car station. The snow on the piste to the four man chair was forming dust devils to a height of a couple of feet above the ground.
I hoped things might be better at Scheidegg, but it was a forlorn hope. Most lifts were closed. Honegg was moving very slowly, the top of the lift lost in blowing snow. I headed for Branndegg, the one half decent run of the day.
It was a long round trip, as I just missed a train to Scheidegg. When I did make it back, the Lauberhorn lift had opened. At the top, the first hundred metres were as smooth as polished marble. Lower down, the snow turned to chalk and then slush. I spent the afternoon chasing some decent snow conditions, but never found them. In a montage of the best ski day ever, not a single second of this Saturday would make the cut.
It may be different tomorrow, with colder temperatures and new snow promised. As always, we hope for the best. A difficult day of ice and wind brought 5,352 vertical metres in 17 lift rides and 39 kilometres travelled.