I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but last Friday was the first time I went night skiing. Ever.

This is my third winter working here at Steamboat Resort, but I’d never ventured out under the lights. Something about heading back to the mountain after work never appealed to me. Maybe the night skiing naysayers even got to me: It’ll be cold, icy and dark.

I made some of my best turns of the season Friday night. It wasn’t cold. It wasn’t icy. And it wasn’t dark.

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It snowed hard most of the day Friday, and that fresh 5 or so inches was smoothed out by the snowcats before night skiing kicked off for the season. There’s nothing like fresh cord, which is easy to forget because I’m not exactly a morning person. The snow surface was amazing, and I completely trusted my untuned edges to carve up those tiny peaks and valleys.

I wasn’t sure what to expect as far as visibility, and even though it doesn’t feel bright out on the hill, the lights do an incredible job of illuminating the snow surface. I wore my rose goggle lenses, and the snow definition was better than all but the sunniest days.

CSU's Cam the Ram goes night skiing as part of Mascot Stampede.

CSU’s Cam the Ram goes skiing as part of Mascot Stampede.

We hit the hill right when the lifts opened at 5:30 (highly recommended if you want fresh cord), and it was pretty empty aside from some skiing college mascots. The open runs allowed us to make wide, carving turns, and I couldn’t help but giggle most of the way down.

For me, skiing at night was magical. Lights from the base area and downtown Steamboat were twinkling behind the gently falling snow. Had I really been missing out on this for three years?

With all the snow we’ve had this past week, I’m sure tonight will be amazing under the lights. Want to give it a try? Night skiing is open Thursdays to Mondays through March 28 with some additional nights during the holidays.

Get out there and enjoy!

 

Nicole Miller, social media specialist

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