Kristen Lodge: A revolution of snow
Grand County, CO Colorado
In November, we wait for snow. We wait for weather reports and clouds coming from the northwest. After ten years of living in ski towns, I still get excited for the first big snow and the ritual of getting all the ski gear out of storage: sweaters, hats, gloves, and ski jackets. Each morning as I walk to the door to open the blinds I hold my breath in anticipation for what poet Billy Collins writes in the first line of Snow Day: “Today we woke up to a revolution of snow” and hope for snow on the ground.
I know that ski season is almost here when the roads are slick at 8 a.m. and I see the first car upside down in the ditch on the Fraser flats. I know that ski season is almost here when I drive south from Granby to Fraser and the outside temperature reading in my car continually dips each minute.
When I drive past Winter Park Resort and hear snow guns, when the tall grass under the lifts at SolVista Basin is mowed, I know ski season is almost here.
All of this means it’s almost time for people to fill our most beautiful valley. I love the energy from skiers and riders as they drive around town wearing ski goggles on their foreheads or hanging from their rear view mirrors. I smile as cars drive by with colorful skis and snowboards on roofs racks – art, really, the way equipment is designed.
I am envious of the people heading to the slopes as I watch them at stop signs or at convenience stores with big smiles talking on cell phones making plans to meet outside Sunspot or Starbucks as they drive to the base area with a car filled with passengers in ski clothes.
One of best sounds during ski season is the sound of children laughing and squealing as they snowplow down a green trail or sled under the chairlift where I live. I love sitting in the sun slope side at the end of a great day of skiing and telling stories and eavesdropping on families and friends telling their stories.
I look forward to all these sights and sounds as I plan my winter to-do list. I want to ski every trail at SolVista each time I go out. I want to take first and last chair each day I ski Winter Park. Every year I vow to Nordic ski; I think this year is my year.
I want to ski Devil’s Thumb Ranch since I’ve never been there. I want to ski at the Nordic Center at Snow Mountain Ranch. I want to ski the Grand Lake Touring Center on their Full Moon Ski event Dec. 31. I want to ski at Latigo Ranch in Kremmling since I’ve never been there.
When in search of quiet and solitude, I will snowshoe the 600 miles of trails in the Fraser Valley that change from a mountain biker’s paradise into a snowshoer’s dream once the snow flies. I hope to be outside every minute I can, all winter long, once the revolution of snow arrives; I hope you will, too.
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The Mustangs cross country team trudged through a muddy 5K Saturday morning during the West Grand Invitational, a race that slowed times but sent the fun factor through the roof for many of its competitors.