February 2, 2011
Eugene Buchanan, magazines editor
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Magazines editor and columnist Eugene Buchanan writes about his experience at one of Conservation Colorado's sage grouse viewing trips.
I’m halfway through a 7-mile cross country ski trail on Hogan Park from Rabbit Ears Pass to the top of Steamboat Ski Area. With only 800 feet of elevation gain, and wide, flat meadows to traverse, this gives my mind plenty of time to wander.
If ever there was a stand-in for the famed mountain man, who actually trapped just north of here, it’s fourth-generation Steamboat Ray Heid, who runs Del’s Triangle 3 Ranch outside Clark.
A diehard backcountry skier, Edge, vice president of Backcountry Access, was hitting Rabbit Ears to learn riding tips from pro rider Brett Rasmussen. Did I want to tag along? Of course.
One day we’re languishing in the remnants of the worst snow layer ever, and the next thing we know, a 20-inch snowstorm wallops Mount Werner into submission, popping the celebratory cork on full-blown, Steamboat-style Champagne.
The first skate ski of the season, which occurs on Bruce’s Trail atop Rabbit Ears Pass, happens earlier than it does anywhere else in the country,
While skiers flocked to the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club’s ski swap this weekend, for me it’s another gear exchange that truly marks the change of the seasons. Only this one involves the garage rather than the school gymnasium.
The storms hurtle by, missing us by mere miles. Rain streaks come between us and Porcupine Rim to the south, while another burst blows by to the north. Had we been in Moab mountain biking as usual, we’d fear mud, a douching and perhaps a case of squeaky brakes.
Those with mortal lungs were milking freshies on the 4.25-mile Morning Gloria, Steamboat Springs' newest mountain bike trail. You only get one chance at a first impression and Morning Gloria’s was...glorious.
Sometimes when you travel you can’t help but think about home. That was the case for me recently when attending the three-day-long Salmonstock Festival in Ninilchik, Alaska, with my in-laws. Billed as “three days of fish and music” and benefiting efforts to protect salmon from such threats as the proposed Pebble Mine, the event resembled our free concert series here in Steamboat.
We’ve all had those times when something Colorado-ish just clicks — a moonrise over the aspen, a rainbow framing a deer, a trout rise in the early morning mist. My mile-high moment came last weekend, when even the good lord above would’ve had a hard time scripting a more scenic scenario from our 38th state.
Members of the Detroit Red Wings Alumni Association were here for the weekend to play a benefit game for the Steamboat Springs Youth Hockey Association.
Having your roof electrified with 120 volts reaffirms that anything can happen in Ski Town USA
Science teachers: Want a case study for your next class? Use my house. It all started on Valentine’s Day, when my 5-year-old niece, Lily, visiting with her parents from Alaska, came into the laundry room and told her mom, Laurie, she “was scared of the fire.”
What did you do on New Year’s?
Jim Creeggan, of the Barenaked Ladies, was in town with his family for the holidays, staying at the well-appointed second home of his in-laws. Our far-from-polished, midlife crisis band El Kabong was invited to said house on Jan. 1 for a New Year’s party. And there, sure enough, Creeggan grabbed a bass and joined us on the makeshift living room stage, where I made the most of the opportunity.
When a perfect crust forms on the spring snowpack atop Rabbit Ears Pass, it serves up something relatively unusual in Steamboat and its high-altitude flats: crust skiing.
There are countless ways to lose time in your first Randonee race: Being out of shape is one, as is being spastic at transitions, slow on the downhills and schizo about layering.
If this month gets remembered for its lack of snowfall, it also might go down for its urban line accolades. Not even a windstorm swept up to Etch-a-Sketch away locals’ snowy artwork.
Forget the in-laws, last-minute shopping and stress of frothing your meringue to a pointed whip. The real test of the holidays is surviving the white elephant gift exchange.
It’s been a while since we’ve seen such a feeding frenzy. Sixty-three inches of snow in 10 days after a prolonged drought will do that to people.
Erik Weihenmayer is taking the expression “running rapids blind” to new heights.
Well, I’ve done it. I’ve done gone and reached the end of my soccer coaching era in Steamboat. With the end of the Steamboat Mountain Soccer Tournament on July 15, my daughter Casey, 9, officially has graduated from recreational soccer.
Bob Marley would be proud of Steamboat Springs, where every spring break sees an exodus, a movement of the people as locals abandon mud season for greener and warmer pastures. And this year more than most, it seems that movement was to Moab.
Well, it’s over. Another winter beer league hockey season has come and gone, and with it the hopes and aspirations of every team but the one that will get its name enshrined on the coveted Barn Cup trophy and get bragging rights for the year.
With the “Gondola Line Starts Here” sign outside One Steamboat Place, I could tell Monday was going to be a doozy — one that would call upon every lift line negotiating skill I had ever honed.
Live in Ski Town USA and there’s a good chance either you or someone you know heads down to the annual SnowSports Industries America (SIA) trade show every January in Denver.
Even with a subpar start to our skiing and riding year, all that snow has to go somewhere come runoff. And when it does, it fuels another sport relying on gravity and precipitation: river running.
It’s hard after nine months to get back into the powder swing. There are a lot of things to remember and nary any time to spare.
Ski patrollers might notice skiers and riders schussing a little faster down the mountain this season, and not just because of the winter’s firm snowpack.
She’s gone. There, I said it. While we all have moms and other relatives who visit for the holidays, staying in tight quarters often can be taxing. Especially if your mom is more eccentric than most.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Puh-lease. This might hold true for the Routt County Courthouse lawn, the lights hanging over Lincoln Avenue and the bell-clangers outside City Market, but not in the most traditional sense of having a very white Christmas.
Why is the daffy — that glorious, crotch-ripping badge of courage involving one or more midair splits — tainted with dorkdom? Pop a daffy under the lift today and you’re considered an ironic hipster or a loser.
Veteran Steamboat Springs-based journalist Eugene Buchanan has been hired as the magazine editor for the Steamboat Pilot & Today. His first day was Tuesday.