This weekend I left the valley – a somewhat rare occurrence in winter for me. My 2 year old and I accompanied my husband on an ‘adventure’ to another Colorado ski resort where he had to be for work. While it is always fun to explore and go see other places, everything about my weekend away reminded me of why I LOVE STEAMBOAT!
Sure, when you live somewhere your heart gets tied up in that place, and as long as you’ve picked someplace relatively rad, being home is where you feel best. But this town, and this mountain, have something special about them.
People in Steamboat are sincere in their friendliness and good cheer. When we say family friendly, we mean it – being away helped me to see how much work it can be to navigate a ski area, or even just the base area and ticket office, with a toddler. People here go out of their way to make sure that visitors have a great time. Our city chamber even developed a program that they offer to every business in town to make sure that we are offering superior customer service. The whole town is invested.
Half of the fun of skiing is the social aspect, and sharing the fun of being out with the people around you. Every run I took today, I met someone new. I rode up Storm Peak Express with Steve, who has been in this valley for 28 years, and skis every single morning, no matter the conditions, just to get out. I rode up Sundown with Tom from Columbus, Ohio. He is here solo for a week just to ski and relax. He told me he skis all over the country but he keeps coming back to Steamboat for the vibe of our town, the quality of his experience, the interaction with the people. Every liftie asked me how I was doing, they helped me with my skis, they joked with me about the trivia (love me some Storm Peak trivia, where do they get their questions?). They don’t have to do that, I am an employee, so they don’t have to sell me on Steamboat. But that’s the point – they’re not ‘selling’ Steamboat. They are just having a good time being out in the mountains, and they are excited to share that with everyone.
Sure, we need new snow. The whole state needs new snow, and it is apparently in the forecast. But it’s not the snow that really makes Steamboat (although Champagne Powder is a heavenly thing). It’s the people and the attitude and the love of skiing. I feel so lucky to be raising my child in this environment.
Happy Wednesday skiers and riders and snowshoers and Christmas shoppers. Go make some turns. Turn off your tunes for a lift or two, see who you’re sitting next to and find out why they are here. And spoiler alert – the answer to Storm’s trivia today: his mom. Of course it’s his mom.
Ali Givnish, Alpine skier