DAVE ROSSI - Enjoy Vacations Blogger : 'A Life Well Skied'
I write this blog on Family Day and reflect that here is no better way to celebrate Family Day than skiing with your family. There are few activates that can capture the joy of skiing with your family, laughing, riding the chairs and skiing together in a group. The skiing starts before arrival to the hill and can be a special way to build a family bond. The long drives and longer conversations, the anticipation and the organizing can really pay off. It has been well worth all the money and time spent planning.
I stopped at the bottom of Where’s Bob. A steep, narrow, double black diamond at Silver Star Mountain Resort. I’d just had first tracks. I set my line skiers left then cut center in waist deep interior blower. I was waiting expectantly for my kids looking up at the run. My son took skiers left to the bottom getting totally shacked, face shot after face shot. Smooth and powerful riding. He stopped just below me with a big grin on his face. We both looked up to see my 16 yr old daughter ride skiers’ right on untracked powder. Dropping over a roll sends the snow sparking and billowing behind her like a cloud of crystals.
I think that was one of my skiing highlights. The endless hot chocolates, snack stops, ski swaps, missed powder days riding rope tows, lost gloves, lost skis, packing up, long travels, sleeping in the car and even falling asleep on the chairlift- I’d spent a life time skiing with my children.
While working in the ski industry I often took my children to work where they would hang out in my office or be signed up in the kids camp. Sometimes in the rental shop they would even “help” the techs wax skis.
One time the head tech had set up a wax station for my 4 yr old son. He even had his own iron. The tech was watching closely when a customer had come to the counter. The tech, turning his attention to the customer left the little guy ironing the skis. My son had kept to his task and continued to iron the skis while the tech was helping the client.
“Tom, Tom I think they’re done” said my son interrupting the customer exchange. Tom turned around to find the bases melting off the skis. “Good job” said Tom.
My kids were on skis before they could walk and we had some fantastic adventures. I saved all the passes. In my daughter’s first pass I had to hold her head up to get her picture taken.
But it was on that day on “Where’s Bob?” where I finally thought I had it figured. My kids could rip a double black and could finally keep up! I had two equal ski partners. I had fulfilled my mission as a ski parent- I could retire from the parenting role and enter the ski partner partnership role. I thought that was the end- that I had really done it. I didn’t imagine it would go this far, that it would just get better.
Fast-forward 20 years and here I sit with my son looking glumly at the stationary chairlift. It had been snowing for three days and the high winds had kept the chair closed.
We sat in my car and pondered the situation debating whether to turn around and go home. Just then we saw the bull wheel start to turn. Quickly gearing up we loaded some of the first chairs. The whole mountain stretched before us without any tracks. Totally untouched. We ripped a long black. I took skiers left, the wind had built up some deep drifts and my son chooses skiers right, staying close to the tree line. Epic skiing, powder and freshies. That day now joins others in my awesome ski bank as well. The price has been well worth it. Investing time with your family. Putting more ski days in the bank. An investment giving better returns than any stock.
Ski with your family!
The joy has never stopped and my son is now 38 and I’m a grandfather. We are looking over the edge of the Cliff, a double black diamond at Big White Ski Resort with three generations of skiers. My 12 yr old grandson goes first, then my son. I pause briefly at the top watching them drop in, carve the packed powder and give thanks to ULLR the ski god, for a life well skied.