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Mountain Mayhem: Ski days are the best days

May Selby
Mountain Mayhem
Friends Emilie Wiggin and Sari Tuschman thread their way through Bingo Glades on Aspen Mountain, one of my favorite glades.
Sommelier Jesse Libby, chef-turned-manager Lucas Rocca and Chef Rob atop Highland Peak. Lucas was en route to his 50th Highland Bowl hike so far this year.
Gloria Apodaca and her beau, Chris Radomski, stop for a sip of Duke Spirits at The Sundeck.
Grace Harrington and her dad, Ryan, on a father-daughter ski day on Ajax.
Aspen native Tyler Williams who now owns his own biz, Goat House offering high-end ski and bike rentals, at Highlands with his good friend, Chef Troy.
Ski squad: Taylor Latousek, Spencer Irvin and Lily Fitzgerald en route to the top of Highland Bowl.
A cheerful gent named Maurice behind the line at the Merry-Go-Round whips up healthy rice or quinoa bowls while you wait.
Ski date on the slopes - Colleen and Alex Irvin getting after it at Highlands.
Bluebird ski day - perfect for a hike up Highland Bowl.
The sun peeks through the trees on Temerity at Aspen Highlands last Sunday.
Doug Reinhardt, Amy G, and her brother, Jay Gleason at The Sundeck one snowy day.

When the ski conditions are as stellar as they have been, you ski or ride as often as you can. But who’s counting? Actually, most people I know are. Lucas Rocca, a chef-turned-restaurant manager in Aspen, was on his 49th lap of the season on Highland Bowl this past Sunday when I ran into him and several friends at the top. They went for one more time to round out fifty laps and counting. Not one to boast, he didn’t mention this other goal, but his friends did – he’s gunning for his 10th annual 100-day pin this ski season from Aspen Snowmass, which is now commemorated with a 1000-day pin for the few, the dedicated, the proud who ski 100 days a year for a decade.

Last month’s historic snowfall was recorded as the second snowiest December ever across all four ski areas of Aspen Snowmass, including “the biggest storm in 43 years” noted on the Aspen Skiing Co. Instagram with some other end-of-month accumulation totals, and snow stakes at Aspen Highlands and Snowmass logging 100 inches each for the month.

When you need a break, there’s always a smiling face to greet you inside at the mountain restaurants. IYKYK (if you know you know), on Aspen Mountain, there’s what locals refer to as “3 to G” or taking Chair 3/Ajax Express to see Amy G. at the Sundeck Bar. And I recently discovered a nice crew behind the line at the Merry-Go-Round including a Jamaican named Maurice who’s spending three months here working along with many other Jamaicans who are visiting from The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs. The Five-Star, Five-Diamond hotel is working with Aspen Skiing Company, sending some of their staff here during their shoulder season to work in our high season – a win all around!



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