Friday, March 12, 2010

57

It took a fair amount of motivation to get myself out the door to ski today.  I know ~ ridiculous. 

It was totally worth it!  I had fresh fluffy runs, fast groomer runs, and mashed potato runs.

I ripped a fast groomer to the sugarloaf lift so I could hike to the top of Baldy for the first time.  It was a little after 3pm and the gate was already closed.  I cruised around the corner to hike the other side of Baldy, much lower -- but above the Ballroom.

I heard someone behind me so I turned to see how close they were, pulling to the side of the path so they could pass.  It was Ski Patrol.  He said, "I'm hiking up to close the gate, if you want to go you need to be in front of me."

I was already breathing heavy but I sucked it up and focused, one side step after another.  I got thru the gate, unzipped my jacket (and the side vents on my pants).  I looked back and noticed that Mr. Ski Patrol had been kind enought to give me some space because he was still side stepping up the hill.

I asked if he could pass me now that I was thru the gate.  He said I was good to go now that I was thru the gate.  He was going a different way, dropping down to close another gate.  So I hiked a bit higher, more slowly now, and made a few fresh fluffy turns.

Monday, March 08, 2010

55 ~ Back @ Alta

Sunny & warm.  Soft snow.   By myself.  I need some ski buddies.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Backcountry ~ La Sals

My first day of backcountry skiing in the La Sals in a couple (maybe a few) years.  It was so beautiful.  Pristine!  I wish I had some photos to share.

I hiked (skinned) for about an hour and a half.  I think I did the Laurel Meadows loop.  I was by myself, which is a big NO NO.  I was traveling/skiing low angle stuff so, in theory, I was ok.  Actually, I wasn't alone.  The Rooster was with me.  I'm pretty sure he enjoyed it as much as me.

We shared a grilled chicken sandwich on top.  I ate most of it.  Then we raced down thru the meadow.  The snow was so soft and creamy - all FRESH!  Rooster and I somehow ended up on the same line between  narrow trees and I had to crash to avoid hitting him.  A few years ago his leg was cut to the bone by a ski or snowboard on one of our redneck dawn patrols.

We were out for about 3 hours, which felt like plenty.  I got to practice with my new gear and I can't wait to go out again.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

52

Sunny & Warm.  It felt like Spring!  My favorite run of the day was High Boy.  Even though there were some big bumps the snow was soft and easy to turn on.  I also did a couple of runs on the Shoulder and a couple of fast groomers.  I actually didn't ski much.  I met up with Aron & Mike and we had a late lunch at the Collin's Grill. 

The fun thing about having lunch at the Collin's Grill is trading your boots for slippers.  It is also fun to look at the mountain while enjoying a glass of wine.

Friday, February 26, 2010

51

Where to ski?  When to drop in? 

As the chair lift approaches the top of the mountain I'm often still deciding where I'm going to ski on this particular run.  This morning I hit the singles line and caught Aron & Mike on the Backside.  Aron's outifit is so easy to spot from a distance.  They got there early and had one of the first chairs.  I was a little off the back, I arrived just as they opened the lift.  I knew it was just opening because I heard the cheer as I walked up to the line.

I was deciding where I was going to ski my first run when I spotted Aron on the crest of a hike that leads up to the Backside.  I hiked up and could see them a short distance in front of me.  Everyone had the same idea so their was a line of people slowly hiking up.  I realized right away that I had overdressed.  I hiked a bit further and I wasn't tired but there were so many people in front of me that I decided to drop in early.  It was fun!  It was good!  I couldn't help wondering if I should've hiked a little further though.

Something similar happened in the Ballroom.  There was a massive line of people, backed up, headed out on the higher traverse.  We took a lower entry and Aron told me to go around him so he could wait for Mike.  I was a little annoyed because I dropped even lower on the traverse.  I took a quick look up and saw the line of people above me.  I instantly decided it was time to drop in.  It was well worth it!  So I dropped in early again.

I rode the Wildcat lift and hiked up the shoulder from the otherside, hoping I would miss some of the crowds.  I did.  I hiked pretty high and had a fun run but when I looked back I realized I could've dropped in much earlier (had way less hiking) and a bit more powder.  ;) 

Unfortunately, I had to cut my day short to come home and wait for a new washing machine to be delivered.  I went and bought my current favorite snack:  Trilogy flavored Synergy (Kombucha) and a chocolate chip cookie.  YUM!  Now I'm waiting for the washing machine.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

50

It is going to be tough to get another 50 days in, considering it is the end of February.  With all the snow in the La Sals, though, it could be possible.

I was a little lonely today.  The skiing was really good, even though it was heavy, that helped take my mind off of skiing alone.  The benefits of skiing alone include:  you can ski where you want and you can ski at your own pace. 

I had some really amazing runs today.  Floating on top of the snow.  Bouncing in the soft fluffiness from turn to turn. 

It is satisfying to feel the results of my practice.  I feel more fit and I feel more confident on my skis.  I'm also having more fun because I can ski faster and tougher lines.  I would like to make it a goal to ski a few days in the backcountry this March.

Monday, February 22, 2010

49

Brrrrrrr!  The snow was great today - both fast and soft.  The cold was biting though, 8 degrees on top.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

48

After spending four days, not skiing, with kids I was so excited to ski on my own that I was bubbling inside.  I saw Aron as I was walking to the line-up and called his name.  He heard me so we were able to ride the chair together.  He had been working and his client had decided to stop skiing a couple hours early because he was tired. 

We did a warm-up run off of the High T and then I suggested we do Gunsight.  It turns out I hadn't done Gunsight yet.  Part of the approach involves traversing with a rope across rocks.  Early in the season we traversed across rocks on our skis but this was different.  My first thought was that my skis will slip on the rocks. 

When it was time to let go of the rope I received a shot of adreneline charged by fear.  I slowly looked back and held onto the rope for another moment.  I experimented with my footing to insure I felt safe.  I let go and looked up in the direction I was headed.  My skis stuck as I took one step and then another, side stepping up the hill.  Once I was off the rocks and on the soft snow my mind reflected back, "that wasn't so bad."

We ran into Big Al & Hayden.  It was super fun to ski a few runs with them.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Day 43 ~ I heart powder.

As far as I know, no one is reading my blog, so I'll complain about my knee once more.  It was hurting soooooo bad two days ago (after my open to close day of powder skiing).  Everytime I bent my left knee I would get sharp shooting pains.  It actually woke me up aching in the night.  Even vitamin 'I' wasn't helping.  OK, enough about the pain.  Now, here is the solution:  YOGA! 

I went to class on Saturday morning.  I couldn't believe the result -- after class I had freedom in my knee.  It didn't ache.  I could move & bend it.  Even though I love yoga and I practice regularly, I was amazed!

As a result of the wonderful therapeutic nature of practicing yoga I was able to go ski today.  I only took 5 runs but I hiked for each of them - and it was so worth it!

I know it is almost the same picture from a couple of days ago but it is a different location (the shoulder, not gunsight) and LOOK; fresh, unskied powder.  So good -- I hiked this same route 4 different times to keep experiencing it.
View of my hike up - looking towards Baldy.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Day 42 ~ Secret Powder Day

The word didn't get out today - the snow report said trace to 1 inch. Fortunate for me, I wasn't planning my day based on the snow report. It dumped all day!! Yeah!!!!

I wasn't on the first chair today, but I was close enough. I skied from 9:30 - 4:40 with a short break for lunch. I just couldn't stop! Each run was so great that I couldn't wait for the next. I had to force myself to take a break.

I spent most of the day skiing by myself.  I did take a run and a half after lunch with Aron & Mike.  We skied some fresh tracks on terrain that used to be challenging for me.  Before I sound just the tiniest bit cocky --  I also skied a couple of runs with Scott B.  I found myself, again, gasping for air and skiing less than graceful as I struggled to keep up.  It was worth it, as usual.  It is always a treat to have someone to share a stellar run with.



My ski tips almost hanging over the edge of Gunsight.  I thought it could be a tad risky to really hang them over as I fiddled with my camera, mittens off and poles discarded.


View from Gunsight.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Day 41

I took two ibuprofen before skiing & two when I finished.  The skiing was super fun today, even though there wasn't any new snow.  It probably had a lot to do with the fact that I had taken some time off and I was happy to be back on my skis.  I spent the day skiing with Aron & Mike.


Team Dynastar, almost first in line.  First time for me, this season.


Mike following Aron down the groomer.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Friday, February 05, 2010

Day 39

Four days off and my knee still hurts.  Not sure what to do.

Monday, February 01, 2010

8 Year Old Inspiration

I spent the last 3 days skiing at Deer Valley with two super cool 8 year old girls.  I want to begin by recinding a statement from an earlier post about not being impressed by Deer Valley.  I had so much fun skiing with these young ladies that my opinion of Deer Valley is forever changed.

Molly & Emmie.  Molly is from St. Louis & Emmie is from San Diego.  They are cousins.  They were both skiing on Roxy skis and were comfortable rockin' the pizza down almost any hill.  We worked on side slipping because they wanted to ski steeper terrain.  Deer Valley really is a great resort.  There is a lot of terrain and some of the runs are just ideal for learning.

They took me in the trees when I let them lead. . .giggling as we looked between the tight aspens so our skis would follow.  By the second day, Molly was teaching her younger brother how to side slip so he could come with us on our adventure through the glades.

The last day we were blessed with fresh powder.  We spent the day "pointing it" thru the fresh fluff and being dazzled by the snowflakes landing on our bright ski clothes as we rode the lift. 

The best way to sum up these 3 days (I think Molly & Emmie would echo me in this statement) - "I love skiing!!!"

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Day 30 ~ Better with a friend

Saturday.  Even a bunch of fresh snow couldn't get me to sit in the shit show of traffic headed up the canyon this morning.  I waited it out, thought it was safe, and found it was still backed up to the stoplight by our house.  So I went around the block and spent an hour shoveling the driveway.  It was still snowing so I figured I would let the crowds thin out before I headed up to enjoy what mother nature has decided to drop on us for days now.


I went out again, around 11 am, and felt like it was a wise decision.  I hit a little bit of slow traffic near the top as people were parked everywhere along the road outside of Snowbird.

By Noon I was skiing. By 1:30ish I came off the rope tow from 3rds and I wasn't feeling very motivated.  I went into the Goldminer's Daughter for a hot chocolate.  They have the best hot chocolate.  They mix Ghiradelli syrup with whole milk in the morning and then they steam it to order.  I ran into Jack while I was ordering my hot chocolate. 

We decided to take a run together and it changed my day.  He was so much fun!  There is just something about having a friend to reflect the joy of the experience with.

We skied far right off of Thirds, which I had never done.  He took me thru the Willows (I almost lost a ski).  Jack said, "just run right into the willows."  "You can ski right over them."  Well, I did run right into one.  I think he meant the little ones.  It was super fun and fast, a gully of fresh powder.

I finished my day on another run I had never done.  I skied off of Wildcat to the P-Dog.  Jack said, just stay farther left than you think you need to.  It was fun exploring and there was nobody over there. 

More Snow Tonight!!



Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Day 23 - DEER VALLEY

Deer Valley Sucks.  I know, that is harsh.  I'm sure it has some attributes that I missed because of the lack of snow.  Thankfully, we had beer and funny outfits so our day was still a great deal of fun!


"As good as you're lookin' you should really stick to the groomed runs so everyone can enjoy your beauty."



I had to borrow my one piece because I've misplaced mine over the years.  You can see, it really does nothing for my curves.  :) 

Now Heather D & Shuler. . .they were rockin' their classic Bogner suits hard!  The runs at Deer Valley are mellow enough that it really isn't a challenge to enjoy your PBR while skiing.

We accidently downloaded on our last run of the day.  What?  How did that happen? 

Monday, January 11, 2010

Day 22


Heather D and her friend, Shuler came to ski Alta.  We had a fun time traversing around the mountain looking for trouble. 



It doesn't look steep from here but it was fairly intimidating from the top.  We had to slide our way down and pop thru a couple of narrow trees.  Heather D didn't want to let go of the tree!


Shuler pointed it and appeared to be in the clear when something caught her ski and sent her tumbling down the side of the mountain.  Shuler hasn't been on skis for many years but you wouldn't know it watching her determination as we bounced from one black diamond to the next. 

Friday, January 08, 2010

Day 19

Couple of hours by myself.  Forgot my ipod.  My knee injury from the other day didn't hurt.  I think the couple days of rest were good for me.  My queen dork moment of the day was I did 90% of a run with the lower part of my boots unbuckled.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Day 18

2+ hours by myself.  I rocked the Desert Mix, again, on my ipod.  My 2 favorite runs were from the hike above ballroom.  It was a relatively short boot pack.  I was breathing heavy and grateful for my ipod.  Both times the songs seemed to encourage me to the top. 

I ate shit in the gully today.  I dropped in tentatively and I think I forgot to look thru the ramp/jump to the top.  Basically I stuck my skis in the wall of the ramp and crumbled.  It hurt my left knee, the one that I have already been having trouble with.  I should probably ice it.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Day 17

I inadvertently took the day off yesterday.  Today I went up and paid for my new boots - well, my new footbeds. 

I felt great on my skis today and I think it had everything to do with my boots.  They felt comfortable and I had control.  The most control I've ever had skiing!  I actually felt comfortable pointing it.  I listened to Erik P.'s 'Desert Mix' on my ipod. 

Zoe, at Deep Powder House, rocks!  He is a master bootfitter!  He created my footbeds, punched holes for my (yes, it is true) bunions, and wrapped the ankles of my liner so my heel wouldn't come out of the pocket.
http://www.deeppowderhouse.com/