Well I had what I thought was a well deserved beer at the Rossland Brewery after my ski tour today. My preseason challenge is done as Red Mountain is open tomorrow. Out of a possible 29 days I skied on 26. I am glad I did it and I am glad it is over.
My biggest challenge was time, I was just not organized well enough to get time in during the day to ski, especially to drive 30 minutes to and from. But I did ski and the challenge got me out and delivered unique skiing experiences. I do not have any recent photos as all of my skiing in the past week has been done at night. These days night starts after 4:00PM. This has been a memorable experience, highlights are skiing in the moonlight on a perfect carpet of snow which is on a perfect carpet of golf course grass. And I guess what makes it memorable is that I was aware that I in a place and space where people should not typically be.
I had a couple of night when I brought my slalom skis to hole 18 and did 10 laps of short radius turns, 20 turns a lap followed by a quick hike-for me it beats spending an hour on a treadmill.
Another experience was a bit more entertaining, although not at the time. Between holes are gravel paths which were completely covered (well almost completely). I took one of these paths with much confidence, making quick steps around a switchback corner, when I noticed the snow seemed to diminish in depth when the path led into the forest. In fact it more or less disappeared. I thought about stopping, but rather than disrupt my flow I looked for the positive and saw a very narrow, very thin line of snow through to the next hole. There was no snow, just gravel. I crashed hard. It felt like I was catapulted into the gravel, imagine your most memorable face-plant but with no snow. I was in agony lying on the trail, one of those situations where you can’t breath deeply. I knew it would pass but I was in too much pain to get up. The next stage was laughter as I thought about how this would look if a walker came by. My dogs showed no signs of sympathy or interest. I eventually groaned myself up. Torn jacket and both gloves were torn open, and I have missing skin on my left hand and I had to pick the gravel out with tweezers (not your typical skiing injury). Thankfully nothing more serious, it would have been the worst way to end my ski season. The best part was when I noticed as I was lying on the ground the distinct smell of burning plastic, caused by cross country ski base meeting gravel at high speed.