There’s a difference between skiing and a skiing experience

Confused? Let me explain.

With just a few exceptions most of my 65-seasons have been spent skiing. I can’t remember every day or every run, but riding up and skiing down so many places and in so many conditions has been wonderful. Small areas, enormous areas:  in retrospect they were variations on a similar theme. Travel to resort. Lift up. Ski down. Repeat. After a while, memories blend.

1930’s Italian trade card for broth company

Over the years, I’ve had some standout skiing experiences. Some, in resorts; others, far from lifts. All were memorable. 

One week with an instructor and a group of Aussies at Jackson Hole, we skied deep powder, jumped into Corbett’s, drank gallons of beer, and shared a lot of laughs. 

Another time with a guide and three other skiers, we took off in a fixed wing ski plane from a slope in Verbier, landed on a glacier near the Italian border, and spent the rest of the day skiing snow-covered pastures, though tiny summer villages, and down into a valley, where we had lunch and hopped on a train to return to Verbier. Memorable!

The week many years ago with Great Northern Snowcat Skiing in Canada’s Selkirk range was another hard-to-forget skiing experience. The snow was so deep that only the tops of 20’ trees were showing. I often think of how wonderful that week was and wonder if I’m past the shelf life to try a week of hell-skiing.

In many ways, memories of skiing are like memories of raising a family. There’s the quotidian background noise of events punctuated from time to time by the more memorable skyrockets. I always told my kids stories when they were going to sleep but I don’t remember every night or every tale. I do, however, remember some of the big events. It’s how we’re wired. Common memories are like snapshots; uncommon ones are like videos; more detail, more recall.

Skiing has its similarities. With some exceptions, the daytrips and the regular ski holidays tend to blend. But the more unusual skiing experiences stand out. 

Pam and I will never forget being on ski safari in the Dolomites with Inspired Italy or ski exploring the world-class resorts in the Aosta Valley with Alpskitour.

She, who delights in reminding me, after every day of skiing, that she’d be happy never to ski again, is now asking when we’ll be able to return to the Italian Alps for another great skiing experience.

1930’s Italian trade card for broth company


Lake Tahoe: More to Go

Lake Tahoe snowpack is currently at 245% of average with more is forecast. More good skier news: temps are cold, so conditions are expected to hold.


Brighton: Right On!

Brighton Ski Resort, at the end of Utah’s Big Cottonwood Canyon, is a major snow magnet. Many storms favor it over Alta, a short distance away at the end of adjacent Little Cottonwood Canyon. As I write this, Brighton is reporting yet another 24″ dump, reporting 10″ in the past 24 hours, 15″ in the past 48 hours, and 54″ in the past seven days! To date this season, Brighton has received 634″!!!! If past is prologue, Brighton will continue to be catching flakes well beyond its April 21 close.


Snowbird Closing Date?

The resort has 650″+ and a 176″ base. It announced it will continue daily operations through May 12, then stay open Fridays through Sundays “for as long as we can.”


Rick Kahl Receives Major Ski Journalism Award

Rick Kahl
Rick Kahl, editor of industry trade publication, Ski Area Management Magazine, was namesd recipient of The Carson White Snowsports Achievement Award. The Award, presented annually by the North American Snowsports Journalists Association, honors extraordinary achievement, influence and innovation in the advancement of North American skiing, snowboarding and all snow-related sports. Congratulations, Rick!



NoSweat Helmet Liners

NoSweat is a brand of self-stick, disposable liners for use with hats, visors, and helmets. I intended to use NoSweat this spring on warm ski days but never got around to it. The product is well designed and relatively inexpensive. It keeps perspiration from cascading into and stinging your eyes. Google “No Sweat Helmet Liners” for many purchasing options or visit the company’s site.


Earth Day

Monday, April 22 is Earth Day. Visit the official Earth Day site to see how you might support the organization’s many efforts to improve the environment. Then, put on your sneakers or boots and give our collective Mother a visit. She’s been taking a beating for a long time and needs to know we still love her. In other words, dear readers, time to Take a Hike!

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