A classic day
January 29, 2007
ASPEN A perfect winter sun shone brightly on Aspen Mountain on Monday; it was small, round and cold. The shadows were long. Hard pillows of snow hung tiredly on the trees. The chill of last week still steamed from the mouths of the few skiers and snowboarders out on a midwinter Monday.The air was so clean, so crisp. The gondola felt stuffy. Riding up on a chair, slow or fast, always felt right.Groomed trails were running hard and fast on Aspen Mountain. Ruthie’s, Dipsy Doodle, Gene Reardon’s all required edges to navigate. Cooper Bowl was the softest of the bunch, holding up with the help of early shadows cast daily by Bell Mountain.The better choice was always ungroomed: Super 8, Magnifico, Roch. The north side of the mogul was always a little softer than the other sides. Is there a way to ski the north side only? Always going downhill.It was a classic mid-winter day in Aspen. The “good old days” were with us again Monday. A few people, mostly local. A perfect view – blue skies, white peaks. The air tasted clean. The town below looked like a model.January traditionally is a cold month in Aspen, but history has defied itself in recent years. The freeze we all were accustomed to had become a melt, especially in the middle of the month. This year, history and January were themselves again. The temperatures dipped early and stayed that way through the end of the month. But it’s time for another storm. The slopes are hungry for more snow. So are we.