Joel Reichenberger: Bizarre skiing
December 5, 2010
Steamboat Springs — It seems a little surreal, doesn't it?
I spent most of this week skiing as much as possible. It was fantastic — Sunday and Monday stood out as two of the best days in my years skiing in Steamboat Springs.
The powder was everywhere, and it was deep. Trailing a couple of friends and putting on my best impersonation of what I hope I look like after about 40 more days skiing, I had access to all my favorite powder stashes.
On Sunday afternoon, we made laps on Storm Peak Express, our tracks mostly filled in between runs. By Monday, another foot of snow ensured that the previous day's scars were buried deep.
In the afternoon, looking for fresh terrain, I almost suggested something that simply wasn't possible.
"Hey, let's go to Morningside … oh, wait."
It's the kind of thing I at first wanted to complain about. A look at the calendar showed how absurd that was, however. I skied one day of the opening weekend last year, and none the year before.
I have desperately urged friends and family before not to visit with any intention of skiing in November, or even anything but the last week of December.
When I heard of people who were going up every day early in the past couple of seasons, I figured them devoted in a way I'll never understand.
When I heard of people who couldn't go up at all last weekend, I figured them extraordinarily unfortunate.
I've set new skiing resolutions for myself each year, and I've met them with varying degrees of success.
Here's hoping this year I do better.
I want at least 50 days. I was at five after Tuesday, which means I already could be 10 percent done skiing. Maybe 60 is possible for me. Last year, I stalled at 49.
I want to race again and do better. Last year, I avoided last place in a Town Challenge Super G event thanks to a snowboarder and a few senior citizens. This year, I want another go at it, and I want to finish in the top two-thirds.
And, as usual, I want to ski the trees and/or bumps without forcing bleeding eyes to those watching. I failed miserably in that regard a season ago, but this is clearly a different kind of season.
Nothing else has made sense so far this season. Why should my expectations?