I have a secret I need to share. Even though this this will kill my mountain cred, I have to come clean. I missed yesterday’s huge powder day. There, I said it, let’s move on.

On the bright side, I woke up today greeted by insanely blue skies and plenty of fresh snow left over. I couldn’t believe the morning I was having. You see, sometimes writing this blog is very difficult. Putting into words the immaculate scenery and soulful feeling one gets from schussing this mountain can be an insurmountable task. First of all, I’m not that good of a writer. Secondly, there are some things one has to experience to understand.

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Though the morning air was a bit nip, the snow is incredible. As I glided down Flintlock and ducked into the trees on skier’s left, my body was tingly warm inside. The morning light reflected off the newly formed crystals at surface and made my skis want to dance. Like a private tango in the woods, my aura glistened as brightly as the tiny ice flakes that clung to every tree branch. Life in Steamboat is good today, there’s no doubt about that.

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As I continued to explore the remnants of yesterday’s powder dump, a recollection popped into my head. A friend of my recently told me that his internal company motto was, “We work hard, but we play harder.” Seems like a great place to work. But I have to question whether one has to be employed there to actually play hard in Steamboat? My intuition tells me that anyone here in this glorious town, whether as a resident or guest, comes to play. We all can’t help but take advantage of the outdoor lifestyle this place resonates. So where a person is employed becomes irrelevant when we find ourselves on the chairlift together, doesn’t it?

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My advice on a day like today is to put your skis or snowboard on auto-pilot. Don’t think; just glide! Go where the wind takes you, and follow the warmth of the sun. Take a minute to basque in the glorious sight of the Flat Tops to the south of us and Mount Zirkel to the north. Capture every imaginable mental photo you can today and store them away for years to come. Dance your way from run to run with unabashed vibrance and enthusiasm. For that’s the way we “play hard” in Ski Town, U.S.A.®

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And if you’re looking for a way to get your final list into the ear of Santa Claus, the fat man himself will be making a grand appearance in Gondola Square today. Festivities begin at 2 p.m. when jolly Ol’ St. Nick trots down on horseback to the delight of young and old. Activities also include free holiday cookie decorating, a stocking scramble, live music, story-time, reindeer and a torchlight parade and fireworks. This is an event not to miss.

We’ll see you there.

Dave Wittlinger, Alpine skier

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