Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Spring skiing in January

    No one likes drought. No one would ever claim that less-than-optimal snow depths are a wonderful thing.
    Yet, that said, there’s a lot that’s wonderful about skiing under sunny skies in temperatures reminiscent of a spectacular March day. Nordic or alpine skiing, it matters not, the snow is firm and the air is balmy. It’s spring-like skiing nearly every day and it’s January. What’s not to like?
    Skiers and boarders have great visibility and don’t risk the vertigo sometimes experienced in the fog of a heavy snowstorm. Lines to be skied are crystal clear. Nordic skiers don’t suffer from higher-speed downhill curves being obscured.
    Grooming on Baldy and Dollar mountains, and on Galena’s Nordic trails, is impeccable, and the decks of the lodges are actually a little merrier than usual be-cause they’re full of people, not snow, and there’s plenty of space for sun-worshipping lunch crowds.
    Frostbite isn’t an issue. With mild temperatures, even folks who chill easily can take turns down a run or trail—or just hang out and enjoy themselves while go-for-it friends lay down vertical feet and log the day’s kilometers.
    Dog owners don’t have to worry about applying ma-jor glops of goop to prevent the dreaded pawsicles that form on long fur between dogs’ toes.
    Visitors who fly into Hailey on this year’s more comfortable regional jets are experiencing far fewer diversions because of weather, which is giving them more time for fun in the sun.
    So, while we fret over the future, curse the Polar Vortex, damn climate change and howl to high heaven about our powder deprivation, let’s have a nice taco or a bowl of soup at an outdoor perch and marvel at the crystalline 360-degree views of the mountains that sur-round us.
    Lemons? Lemonade, we say.

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