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Violet Conditions

violetcoarse.jpgEnergy – Violet snow is typically somewhat aggressive snow that cannot absorb high levels of energy into crystal transformation, and will release moisture with significant mechanical work, even at temperatures well below freezing.
Temperature –
The moderate cold temperature range of violet conditions is much the same as for blue conditions. This can include very cold conditions, and certainly overlaps the green range on the temperature scale.
Snow Crystals –
Violet crystals are duller and less complex than blue crystals. This can be due to duller crystals at formation, or a longer period of transformation including freeze-thaw and the recrystalization of an old snowpack at low humidities.
Moisture –
Violet snow is usually dry because of the cold temperatures involved, but moisture is released through work and will form a freezing glaze at the surface relatively quickly.
Feeling –
Violet snow is usually extremely fast, even when it feels harsh, abrasive and rough.
Skis –
Violet conditions are almost always fast, and ski selection is focused around stability, control and wax pocket cushioning. Typically violet conditions require stiffer skis. In some cases skis with a very hot pressure distribution can be extremely fast.
Grinds –
Violet conditions are a good bet to favor heavier structures than the other cold conditions. It is not a surprise to find a wet ski and grind running well in these conditions.
Waxing Considerations –
Generally harder & highly fluorinated glide waxes. Kick wax will be a binder or klister cushion under hardwax, or straight cold klister.
Geography –
Areas with less than consistent snowfall and temperatures frequently crossing the freezing line are good bets for violet conditions. Manmade snow usually starts off in the violet range. New England and Central Europe are good bets for a good shot of violet conditions in any given season.