Happy New Year! It’s a transition day in the ‘Boat. The wind is blowing, clouds are gathering, and a storm could start any moment. Metaphorically, it seems our skies are symbol of the year of changes to come. We welcome 2017 after a tumultuous 2016. With the iconic Bob Dylan winning the Nobel Peace Prize for literature, it seems all things are possible, and we’ll keep hope alive as we anticipate LOTS of fluffy powder this week. Storms lined up for the forseeable future, and it’s looking like the new year will start out white indeed. Stay tuned to the Joel Gratz’s forecast and plan your ski days accordingly.
This morning is a windy one, so please don’t forget your gator on the car seat as I did. The Gondola, Storm Peak Express and Pony Express were closed when I checked at 10:00, so stay tuned for updates as you head out on the mountain today. You can take the Christie Express chair to Thunderhead, and the skiing is still great and worth the effort!
I started the morning early with some beautiful groomers off of Sundown Express. Sunshine Lift Line to Rolex was fast and carvy, and a groomed Rolex is always a treat. The wind started picking up, but Two ‘O Clock and High Noon were smooth and groomed. It’s a good day to make the big S turns as the mountain is calm and the crowds have thinned.
A little zip up Elkhead Express brought me to the other side and a little morning cord on Lower Rainbow. I tried a run up Four Points, and the wind was howling, though I had a nice chat with a mountain ambassador named Tom, who l found out lived in my hometown, Glen Ellyn, IL for a time. You never know who you might meet on a chairlift and what you might find in common.
I did get one run up Pony before it closed, and caught a nice groomer, though the wind threatened to blow me back up the hill. Lower mountain is a good bet for today, and there are still many nice turns to be had. The wind is our friend, because it blows the storms in, so embrace the changing conditions, ski safe and enjoy.
The new year always feels like a time of renewal and optimism, and of contemplating how we want to spend our next year. Let’s go easy on ourselves this year and make new year’s resolutions a little more attainable, and a little more fun to strive for. Here are a few thoughts:
- Ski more. It almost always beats a day on the couch.
- Worry less.
- Practice kindness. Even when someone makes their big S curve right in your path, you can smile and ski around them. It just feels better.
- Hope with all of your heart. A wise friend told me once that with hope all things are possible.
- Make your work something you love so much you’d do it for free. If you had to.
- Break up your routine and try something new. I took an early morning walk up The Daze with my new micro spikes, and saw the happiest sight. A guy skiing down from an early skin up the mountain, grinning ear to ear and carrying his beautiful husky in his arms. I wish I had a photo for to show you.
If you are looking for something new to experience, come and see the Steamboat Springs Orchestra’s Epiphany Concert this Sunday at 7:00 at Holy Name Catholic Church. Conductor Ernest Richardson and the SSO are partnering with Holy Name, playing works from St. John’s Bible, which they have in their possession through the Epiphany season. Yes, you can enjoy an evening of live music by J.S. Bach, Corelli and Respighi in an acoustically divine setting right here in downtown Steamboat.
Happy Monday and Happy Skiing!
Jessica Berg, Alpine skier