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Hobbes and Destiny talk winter sports and Olympics


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Kids are at ski school.  I ski by myself now and I’m usually ski hard for 2 hours (skiing super hard) then head home home (about 30 minutes driveway to lift).  So I have all day today so I’m skiing and day drinking (two of my top activities) alone.  All day ski school was $200 each.  I just want them to be able to stop.  I have tried a few lessons at Honestly, I am so excited for them to ski with me.   We have a small ski hill (Chapman hill) that is is about 5 minutes from my house that www can totally pop into for a few runs after school once they get the wedge down (goal for the day).  
 

I seriously don’t do bumps anymore.   My knees can’t hold up like they used to.  Fortunately, all the Jerry’s (do you know jerry of the day website?) went home—-and Purg has the worst (compared to where I used to ski at vail/ beaver creek/ copper) bc we are so close to Texas.  It’s not people skiing in jeans bad—-  speaking of which—I really want the ski pants that look like jeans.  What is the jerry situation like in WA?  Is jerry a CO term?  

https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/product/860112/burton-the-jeans-snow-pants-mens

How far is your hill from you?  Rather than skiing behind, you should ski ahead.  The best ski lesson is “keep up”  :)

on my phone and drinking, this message took like 30 minutes.  Sorry if it is all discombobulated.

 

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Like manage to keep electricity on?

Hah! I like the winter Olympics so much better than summer Olympics. I love watching the ski events.

Snoqualmie is going to be open on Saturday. May have to go one last time after Q's early morning lacrosse game.

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She didn't fall at all last night, so maybe I start going ahead. She made a couple of poor decisions early in the season (trying a jump next to a tree and eating shit).

I did go look up what a Jerry was after you mentioned it. Cracked me up. Might be more of a CO term, because people out here barely talk, and it seems like one of the Jerry trademarks is never shutting up. I think gaper and scraper might be more commonly used out here.

My dad wears jeans under his snow pants. I told him that he's embarrassing in the nicest way possible. The guy does not believe in sweatpants or anything athleisure. I'm not sure if its a Boomer thing or a Midwest redneck thing.

Our hill is about 60-75 minutes in good weather and little traffic (about 60 miles). That is the closest place, and a lot of people look down on it. I'm at about 600 ft elevation, right at the start of the foothills. Snoqualmie is at about 3000 ft at base, other places like Stevens and Crystal are 4000 ft at base, but they are about an hour further drive, and worse road conditions (state roads and US Highways as opposed to interstate). Honestly, its worth the convenience. Stevens is also owned by Vail now and has gone to hell since they took over operations. There's never enough parking, most of the mountain hasn't even been open this year, and some ski team parents finally volunteered to learn how to do grooming so their kids could have a ski team this year. Snoqualmie has definitely run lower on staff the last few years and their grooming is lacking, but its still better than dealing with Stevens. I took Q to Stevens once when she was 4 for the magic carpet and I haven't been back since.

I just learned how to ski bumps finally (well, I guess I survive them is more like it), but I definitely don't seek them out. But sometimes I have no choice, especially with the lack of grooming. We have blues with heavy mogul fields lately. If I could find a good old steep and groomed run, I would be all over it.

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19 hours ago, Destiny Skywalker said:

She didn't fall at all last night, so maybe I start going ahead. She made a couple of poor decisions early in the season (trying a jump next to a tree and eating shit).

I did go look up what a Jerry was after you mentioned it. Cracked me up. Might be more of a CO term, because people out here barely talk, and it seems like one of the Jerry trademarks is never shutting up. I think gaper and scraper might be more commonly used out here.

My dad wears jeans under his snow pants. I told him that he's embarrassing in the nicest way possible. The guy does not believe in sweatpants or anything athleisure. I'm not sure if its a Boomer thing or a Midwest redneck thing.

Our hill is about 60-75 minutes in good weather and little traffic (about 60 miles). That is the closest place, and a lot of people look down on it. I'm at about 600 ft elevation, right at the start of the foothills. Snoqualmie is at about 3000 ft at base, other places like Stevens and Crystal are 4000 ft at base, but they are about an hour further drive, and worse road conditions (state roads and US Highways as opposed to interstate). Honestly, its worth the convenience. Stevens is also owned by Vail now and has gone to hell since they took over operations. There's never enough parking, most of the mountain hasn't even been open this year, and some ski team parents finally volunteered to learn how to do grooming so their kids could have a ski team this year. Snoqualmie has definitely run lower on staff the last few years and their grooming is lacking, but its still better than dealing with Stevens. I took Q to Stevens once when she was 4 for the magic carpet and I haven't been back since.

I just learned how to ski bumps finally (well, I guess I survive them is more like it), but I definitely don't seek them out. But sometimes I have no choice, especially with the lack of grooming. We have blues with heavy mogul fields lately. If I could find a good old steep and groomed run, I would be all over it.

LOL--I make poor decisions every time--it usually ends up with me staring at a whole run of moguls.  Here in CO, people are pretty chatty on the lifts-especially older people--I can usually tell who is going to talk right away.   I rarely have someone overly chatty--I can only think of one conversation where I wanted to push someone off the lift--and it was an older ski instructor and two teens.  It was ridiculously cold and turning off/on my music was a hassle (taking my mittens off, finding my phone, etc--okay it doesn't sound like a hassle but when it is cold as shit it is) and they kept asking random dumbass questions.

I think jeans is definitely a midwest redneck thing--it is all ages, at least here in CO.  Jerry and gaper are very similar, I think all gapers are jerry's, but not all jerry's are gapers.  I think Jerry also refers to someone doing something completely stupid on hill...like last year I broke my poles because I fell asleep on the lift...totally a Jerry move.  I also think that ski culture is a predominant culture here--so there may be some subtleties. 

Vail can eat shit.  All they do is sell passes and don't give a shit about their employees or the ski experience.  I was in a two+ hour lift line at Blue Sky Basin once.    They blamed staffing issues on the pandemic, but cutting employee housing, eliminating a ton of customer service positions,  and the employee ski pass has nothing to do with the pandemic.  So staffing issues are a thing here too.  

Convenience is everything.  My house is at 7000 feet and Purgatory is about 8800-11000 feet-so the snow is pretty good.  It is smaller (1600 acres) than where I am used to skiing and has a lower elevation--it is all below timberline, but living 30 minutes away and 1/10 of the crowds make it totally worth it.  Copper Mountain is my favorite, but it was two and a half hour drive driveway to lift--if you are lucky--and that is leaving by 430 am and leaving Copper by 1.  I miss the bowls, but whatever--

 

Said vail lift line:E1792429-9B49-4F84-8AAE-DABC1CB001B1.thumb.jpeg.5422aab303b35b77b01dc69b4113d017.jpeg 

My son the gaper:

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Kids ski helmets are the worst. Q had a Bolle one (I think its the same one your son is wearing) that never fit her head right, and then I read that you should replace them every 5 years. So I got us both some nice Bern ones and I was in between sizes and the smallest is a little bit on her. I also don't buy stupid oversized goggles, which I'm pretty sure is actually how most people eliminate that gap. Mine fit pretty good but it feels almost impossible to fit kids well.

The Vail experience sounds pretty universal. Agreed, they do nothing but sell passes. Our resort is now owned by Boyne, and they do the Ikon pass, and there was about a riot here after the 2nd year because it just started getting way crowded, especially when Crystal Mtn got shut down for landslides in 2019. They started limiting the number of Ikon passes per day, having blackout dates, and forcing them to make reservations and it worked pretty well. We still go at off peak times but Sundays aren't a disaster anymore. I've enjoyed having a pass this year so I will probably do it again next year.

I wanted to take Q on Wednesday afternoon but I called in sick to work today because of a horrible headcold, so I don't think I will be ready to ski tomorrow. Guess we will go Friday night again.

Here no one wants to talk. When I was riding single, it was hard to even make eye contact to ask if I could ride with a group of 2 or 3 on the quad. On Sunday I witnessed so many people getting paired up by the ticket taker that would just slide back when it was time to load so they could have the chair to themselves. I don't even think this is a COVID thing. Since Q and I are only a twosome, we usually have to pair up. Q hates loading with boarders because a few times ago, one took her out pretty good getting off the lift. But she will call people out in line for not pairing up when it gets crowded and I have to tell her to chill and that they aren't going to listen to her. My poor extrovert does not understand people out here. But its pretty funny watching people who are so intimidated by a mildly sassy 10-year old who calls them out on not following rules designed to make the line go faster. 

How did the boys do? Are they wedging? 

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22 hours ago, Destiny Skywalker said:

She didn't fall at all last night, so maybe I start going ahead. She made a couple of poor decisions early in the season (trying a jump next to a tree and eating shit).

I did go look up what a Jerry was after you mentioned it. Cracked me up. Might be more of a CO term, because people out here barely talk, and it seems like one of the Jerry trademarks is never shutting up. I think gaper and scraper might be more commonly used out here.

My dad wears jeans under his snow pants. I told him that he's embarrassing in the nicest way possible. The guy does not believe in sweatpants or anything athleisure. I'm not sure if its a Boomer thing or a Midwest redneck thing.

Our hill is about 60-75 minutes in good weather and little traffic (about 60 miles). That is the closest place, and a lot of people look down on it. I'm at about 600 ft elevation, right at the start of the foothills. Snoqualmie is at about 3000 ft at base, other places like Stevens and Crystal are 4000 ft at base, but they are about an hour further drive, and worse road conditions (state roads and US Highways as opposed to interstate). Honestly, its worth the convenience. Stevens is also owned by Vail now and has gone to hell since they took over operations. There's never enough parking, most of the mountain hasn't even been open this year, and some ski team parents finally volunteered to learn how to do grooming so their kids could have a ski team this year. Snoqualmie has definitely run lower on staff the last few years and their grooming is lacking, but its still better than dealing with Stevens. I took Q to Stevens once when she was 4 for the magic carpet and I haven't been back since.

I just learned how to ski bumps finally (well, I guess I survive them is more like it), but I definitely don't seek them out. But sometimes I have no choice, especially with the lack of grooming. We have blues with heavy mogul fields lately. If I could find a good old steep and groomed run, I would be all over it.


I grew up in Montana. We always wore jeans with thermal underwear when goofing out in the snow. When we went to the ski resort, we’d wear a layer of thermal underwear, the jeans and snow pant. Even with all of that, you’re freezing you add off on the lift, when skiing in below zero weather.

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1 hour ago, Gamevet said:


I grew up in Montana. We always wore jeans with thermal underwear when goofing out in the snow. When we went to the ski resort, we’d wear a layer of thermal underwear, the jeans and snow pant. Even with all of that, you’re freezing you add off on the lift, when skiing in below zero weather.

I am a totally pretentious ski gear snob, so I will keep my thoughts to myself :).   With that said, Big Sky has heated lifts now.  Even with those seats I still froze at Big Sky...and I love the cold.  Respect. 

1 hour ago, Destiny Skywalker said:

Well thanks a lot, Hobbes. Now I found the Jerry of the Day Instagram and now my eye is twitching. Also I will never be productive again.

To me, all of these guys are Jerry's.  A gaper is at 2:01.  

I used to say "send it" all the time when skiing--I really shouldn't be walking.  Everyone is a Jerry from time to time.

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Why are some of these people completely unable to stop themselves from skidding further down the mountain? Is it that icy? Or that steep? When I fall, I tend to just fall on my side in like, slow motion. Usually because of a frigging mogul.

This is also why I avoid cat tracks. Cat tracks are Jerry magnets. And they're super narrow so its hard to escape the Jerrys. I explained it to Q at the beginning of the season and I think she is finally starting to get it after our adventure the other day.

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Yeah...if you are going fast on a steep, icy, and smooth run you will slide.  I would be lying if that never happened to me. 

I agree with you about the cat tracks being jerry magnets, but I actually look at jerrys as moving trees!  We actually have a blue cat track I really like; it is like you are skiing in an enchanted forest.  I buzz them like Maverick in Top Gun. 

Sooo...purg got a foot and a half yesterday and are expecting TWO feet tomorrow and I have to go to Denver for a conference this weekend through next Thursday...ugh. 

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3 hours ago, Hobbes said:

I am a totally pretentious ski gear snob, so I will keep my thoughts to myself :).   With that said, Big Sky has heated lifts now.  Even with those seats I still froze at Big Sky...and I love the cold.  Respect. 

To me, all of these guys are Jerry's.  A gaper is at 2:01.  

I used to say "send it" all the time when skiing--I really shouldn't be walking.  Everyone is a Jerry from time to time.

How the hell do you get caught in a lift?

 

No, we skied on Big Mountain up in Whitefish. I doubt that they ever got heated lifts. We also skied at night when there were less Jerry's out there. The coldest night was when it was -10 with a chill factor that i'm sure would put it near -20. We'd run back to the lodge, warm up for 15 minutes and then make another run.

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I have 2 jackets. One is a nice but old Karbon jacket from like, 2007. Its still waterproof, though, and the pockets are great. I lost a bunch of weight a few years ago so my husband bought me a nice North Face set up. Then I had another kid, so I was too fat for the North Face jacket and pants, but not fat enough for the Karbon jacket. So I got a cheap jacket in fun colors on Amazon. The pockets aren't as impressive, and it is warm as heck because it has zero vents. So I save it for the cold days like you guys are talking about. But now after COVID I'm pretty fluffy so the Karbon jacket fits again. So the Karbon jacket is for warm days because I can open up the vents, and the cheap jacket is for cold days. I get a ton of compliments on it from people on the lift or when I wear it in winter on blizzard days.

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2 hours ago, Destiny Skywalker said:

I have 2 jackets. One is a nice but old Karbon jacket from like, 2007. Its still waterproof, though, and the pockets are great. I lost a bunch of weight a few years ago so my husband bought me a nice North Face set up. Then I had another kid, so I was too fat for the North Face jacket and pants, but not fat enough for the Karbon jacket. So I got a cheap jacket in fun colors on Amazon. The pockets aren't as impressive, and it is warm as heck because it has zero vents. So I save it for the cold days like you guys are talking about. But now after COVID I'm pretty fluffy so the Karbon jacket fits again. So the Karbon jacket is for warm days because I can open up the vents, and the cheap jacket is for cold days. I get a ton of compliments on it from people on the lift or when I wear it in winter on blizzard days.

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Ohhhh...are we talking gear now?  I am sure tomorrow will be a snow day so it looks like I have something to do!

Nice jacket and pass photo btw!  I am loving the spacey looking design. 

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Jerry took my ass out today. I was standing at a table helping Q take her helmet off so she could put on her mask to go inside and get a snack, and Jerry decided to go off-piste. By off piste I mean on the concrete. He realized he greatly misjudged and slammed right into me standing at the table. I kind of managed to fall on the bench.

Jerry was mortified, and I tried hard to be nice, but I'm pretty sure I was still glaring.

I hope someone got it on video.

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Q and I also did a little off trail today. It was probably the best powder day we've had this year, we had a foot overnight by the time we got there, and even though we didn't get there until 2 and the place closed down at 5, we were pooped. I decided let's let Q have some fun and we will do some adventuring. It turns out I am a chicken shit and hate going fast when I can't turn. No send it here. We followed some tracks into the trees and got a little lost but just kept following the tracks. We almost got stuck a few times in the powder but not too bad. Q said I was laughing the whole time (I was). Only 1 black diamond run today and 8 runs total. Q napped the whole way home.

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Nice!  People with think you are from Colorado with knowing the lingo!  Could you not turn because you were tired?  I looked at your map...how long are the runs?  it looks like you have a lot of ski area but the runs are shorter but a lot of width.  I have been exceptionally lucky and I have never been hit/ ran into. 

I have been at a conference all week so I haven't been up.  It has been pretty warm here but we are expecting a huge storm the next few days.  We need it--the in town hill is starting to look brown. 

Not totally gear related, but I pulled the trigger on a new Fjall Raven vest and a new jacket while I was in Denver.  I am so pumped about the jacket--it is marked at $300 and I bought it  for $40.  Something about living in a small mountain town is people tend to dress in a lot of earth tones, flannels, etc.  People here talk a lot about Durango was once voted the worst dressed town in America.  Whether it is true or not, I want to try to be somewhat more stylish--brighter colors, different textures, etc.  The jacket may not be high fashion, but for here it definitely stands out.  The Fjall Raven vest is, oth the other hand, definitely mountain town chic. 

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I typed up a response days ago and Nightly ate it. I think it was more that I couldn't turn because I was trying to follow tracks because we were totally frigging lost and I didn't want to run into a tree. I turn to slow down and bleed off speed. When I am on blues I try to do more short-radius turns to challenge myself but on the blacks I traverse more to pick my turns in powder and so I stay in control. But you are correct, our home resort does not have a ton of vertical. We have a few runs that are longer but they are fairly flat at the bottom.

Your gear sounds nice! I also like the loud colors and patterns. And $40 for that jacket is a steal.

Conditions last Friday were garbage. We had another atmospheric river/Pineapple Express come through and it was bad. Lots of holes, more rocks and trees and dirt poking through, and corn snow. We might be done for the season. I've been keeping an eye on the snow reports and I don't think they've gotten much this week. So we just go week by week at this point and pray for snow. When there are big holes at the base right by the lift you know its bad.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Might've been our last day too but the snow actually wasn't bad. Then again my knee says otherwise.

We decided to go today 2-5 (closing). It was flurries when we got there, progressed to heavy wet snow. We were soaked by the end, despite the Goretex. Conditions varied between packed powder and what I would call slushy powder. I told Q we could go on Parachute, my favorite run (-50% grade, according to Strava). It was covered in the nastiest moguls I've ever been on. Super deep, combined with the steepest run there. I told Q we better go back, and she said, "Come on, Mom, one turn at a time." F***.

Strava said my fastest time is just under 3 minutes. Today I made it in 6:20 (turns out that is faster than last time I did it in 2019, and I remember it was a shitshow because one spot was pretty much a sheer cliff from lack of grooming). Pretty sure Q was waiting for at least 5 minutes for me at the bottom. It was pure nastiness and I couldn't pick my turns at all, they all sucked. I only fell once but I scraped most of the way down and my knee was killing me by the end from all that scraping. I'm too old for this shit. I happened past an instructor with a student who was struggling to get back up, we greeted each other and I said I have to get to the bottom, my kid is down there. He said, "Yeah, its easier for them to turn."

I am retiring from moguls.

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I am totally jealous you are skiing your children.  Being that I just moved here, I skied alone all season.  Even when I took my boys and saw them getting lessons, that was awesome!  I absolutely can't wait till they can do at least blues. 

When it gets slushy is when I am out for the season.  I hate it when when ski hits the slush and the other keeps on going and jerks you...it makes me nauseous.  I actively started avoiding moguls a few years ago.  Even when I do them right they kill my knees and it makes the rest of the day painful---we are getting old.  Never heard of Strava--I used ski tracks for a while but it kills the battery due to the gps always being on. 

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Strava is used more often by runners and cyclists. But it just uses GPS data. I originally started using it for running. I record an activity on my Garmin watch and it posts it to Strava.

Night skiing is done for the season, but they just extended the twilight pass to start at 12pm instead of 2pm. Spring break is next week so the girls are going to hit the slopes. Sunday they are opening Summit East one last time for the season so we are planning on going then, and again midweek.

I talked to someone on Curated and narrowed it down to 2 skis for me: K2 Minderbender Ti 88 (what I demoed, but in a shorter length) and Volkl Kenja 88. He confirmed I need a stiffer ski. I hear the Volkls are pretty stiff. I have a feeling I will end up with the K2s just because they are easier to find, and I'm not sure I will like the heavier weight of the Volkls. I am going to call around a few shops tomorrow and see if they have demos of those so I can pick them up Sunday or during the week next week. He confirmed the 163s were too long, he recommended 156 in both skis. No idea what the hell to do for bindings.

I also need to pick up some shorter poles, the clinic coach said mine were about 4" too long.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We are having an epic spring weather cycle the last few days, so Q and I went up today. Today was a day that I could've used some powder skis. We tried going off trail and Q took a trail that I thought looked shady, sure enough, she almost went off a cliff and we had to turn back and take off our skis and walk most of the way back (which was not fun in powder). We stopped at least 2 more skiers from going back there. She was being a cocky little shit and I got really frustrated. She is overconfident and not being safe, so I nixed any more off trail runs. When she wanted to go down a black diamond marked caution (that is normally not marked that way), I nixed that too. I was a party pooper but the powder really wore me out. My legs are sore tonight. I said we might go back out tomorrow or Tuesday since she has 2 more days of spring break.

I am trying to take more jumps because I think it will help me with moguls (I still hate them but I can't seem to avoid them). And I still need to see if I can find some new skis at spring prices.

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Oh wow!  I love late spring skiing IF it has been snowing--which it has not been--so my last day was when I posted.  Rec soccer started and the boys have games on Saturday and practice Monday (I am coaching) and my games are Sunday/Tuesday so skiing for me is done for the season.

Good call on nixing those runs.  My first thought is always, "let them go and learn", but if she gets stuck or hurt that would be a pain in the ass getting her out--especially since you already hiked once that day. 

I love jumps but still avoid moguls like the plague.  One of my favorite things about Purgatory is that there are some runs that are super hilly making it easy to catch air even on groomed runs.  Win-win.

I am still super envious of you two and can't wait till the boys ski with me.  At the local hill  they are putting in a magic carpet next season which will be a game changer.  It is literally 5 minutes from my house and on the way home from the preschool and my work (Bennett will go with me next year) so we can pop in for 20 minutes or so for a few runs everyday on the way home.

Did you decide on skies?

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Honestly I think I waited too long so pickings will be slim. The K2s will be easier to find, for sure. I'm stopping in at a ski shop tomorrow or Wednesday. I'm just annoyed because places are trying to put me in what they have, not what I need. I don't want 106 powder skis. I want something under 90 width, probably. So I'm just going to have to go in and say what do you have and be prepared to walk out empty handed. I'm pretty sure even the guy online at Curated put me in what they have in stock. He was kind of a douche about my lovely west coast skiing (newsflash, its normally total shit conditions in the Pacific Northwest) when I told him I needed something that can handle crust and ice because he's from the east coast.

I realized the mistake we made was going out of bounds between 2 mountains instead of between 2 runs. She literally almost skied off a cliff. Its safer doing the trees within bounds. And with it being spring, there's the potential for a lot of tree wells.

Turns out the resort is no longer open midweek, so we didn't go. I'm debating whether my husband will squawk about us going on Easter... I said we should all go and I can teach Ethan, but then I got stink eyed because Malibu Ken hates the cold.  But other than that we have too many lacrosse games at odd times and her skis are due back May 1st. I never thought we'd go this far into the season! Normally I am done at the beginning of March.

I forked out an extra $150 for "limited" passes next year so we can go up in the mornings, too. I paid $100 for one midweek day ticket, so if I play hooky once its worth it. The only limitation is no Alpental (the supposedly fancy mountain with difficult terrain on weekends), but I would have to find parking anyway, which is nearly impossible unless you get there right at 9 AM.

That local hill will be perfect for learning, especially with a magic carpet. I grew up on a tow rope, can't tell you how many gloves I shredded before my parents got me glove guards.

 

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