Trip Diary: Yes Virginia, there is snow!
I know what you want. You want to know if there’s really snow in Park City, and is it worth the trip?
Yes, and yes.
Is it 2 feet deep? No. Is the whole mountain open? No. But they’ve done an amazing job helping Mother Nature out with her snowmaking. Kind of like Jennifer Aniston has done, you know, start with something pretty great and just help it out a little.
We just got back
We skied over the New Year’s holiday and covered the entire mountain. There was great terrain open for my little green run skiers and I got my work out on some steep groomers, I even found some good mogul runs.
The best part of this global warming winter is that it was spring skiing weather. Having skied in Vermont for the last 10 years, it was really nice not to wear a facemask and carry multiple hand warmers. In an omen for good sking, a rainbow appeared over my favorite lift the second day we were there.
We skied it all
The rental guys believed me when I said I was a “really pretty unbelievable blow your mind” kind of skier and gave me the longest women’s skis I’ve ever seen. Thinking about it now, maybe they were taunting me. These skis were longer than my husband’s. He said I would kill myself on them. Having been called out by the rental guys AND my husband, how could I not ski on these totem poles? I don’t recommend this kind of grandiose foolishness. However, when you’re skiing random conditions (some crust, some blown snow, a little grass here and there) having a long base is pretty awesome. It took me three days to figure out how to really ski on them, but just carrying them around made me feel kind of tough, in a Suzy Chapstick sort of way.
A few really great things happened on our trip:
We got to try the new Flying Eagle zipline. It’s truly suitable for everyone from a 5 year old (who's at least 42" tall) to grandma. You’re seated, it goes just fast enough to be fun, but not so fast that it would freak anyone out. (Ok it might, but probably not). This is a video of my six year old having the time of his life on it. It’s a great bribery tool for really any multitude of things: getting to ski school, putting on your own boots, not hitting your sister, you name it.
We have budding ski racers now. At the end of ski school one day my son’s instructor pulled me aside and told us that he has real ski talent. This instructor coaches a ski team and felt he had a good sense for natural ability. My dad was an Olympic downhiller but I’ve never thought of having my kids race. We booked a private with this instructor the next day and of course now all the kids want to be racers, which is great. We’re looking for a good program out east, just until we score the private jet so we can race out of Park City. That might be a while (or never, really) so it looks like Vermont it is. You ski where you’re planted.
We skied as an ENTIRE family for the first time ever. My kids range in age from 13 to 6. We’ve been skiing with them for 10 years now, but NEVER all together. As we were riding the six pack lift “PayDay” I got a little teary eyed looking down the row and seeing all of my kids tucked in between me and my husband. It felt as if all those years of forcing (I mean coaxing) my kids in to ski school when they were tired and crying, all the many hours of driving to Vermont in snowstorms, all those gazillions of dollars on lift tickets and lessons had paid off.
I always dreamed we’d be a ski family, you know, share hot cocoa and race each other down the mountain. It might be overstating things (I’ve been accused of doing that) but this trip really was a dream come true.
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