Sunday, March 20, 2011
Yes, Fred and I, with Heinz and his girlfriend, went off to Steamboat Springs to ski and relax.
The first day we had fresh snow to ski on, and since I don't downhill ski, once I'd dropped them off at the mountain, I went to the middle of town where Howelson Hill boasts both a small but challenging downhill area (used in Olympic training) and Nordic trails.
I expected to pay a modest trail fee but the only person around was a guy running the trail grooming machine - he wasn't collecting. A flawlessly sunny day, fresh powder, the place to myself - what could be more rejuvenating? I watched a hawk in winter plumage (white underside, dark above) hunting over the snow.
Later I read that the day before I skied there, a young man had taken a fall headfirst into deep snow and suffocated. That's why we don't ski alone, the mommy in me remarks - except I did too. But I stayed on the trails - I may be a good skier but I'm no hot dog.
The next day Fred joined me at a different Nordic area - such a warm day, the snow was slush in the tracks by the time we stopped. The hot springs afterwards was the perfect antidote to stiffness - ah, hot water!