Bumptopia | AspenTimes.com


Charles Agar
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

WINTER PARK, Colo. ” “Don’t groom Mary Jane” reads the bumper sticker at the Grand County ski area, famed for some righteous mogul skiing.

Locals attribute the quote to almighty God himself.

And Saturday, some great mogul runs there indeed proved divinely inspiring, as the ski area named for a prostitute lived up to its reputation.

Skiing Mary Jane’s steep bump lines ” the kind great for hopping from one mogul to another ” I realized that Aspen is missing something.

There’s no disparaging the skiing or the conditions on the four areas of Aspen/Snowmass ” and this year’s endless powder dumps will go down in history ” but I can count on one hand my favorite bump lines here.

I don’t mean the big, rolling bumps you ski “around” like on Ridge of Bell or Dipsy Wall; I mean the kind you can aim straight through and let the body become a piston.

I call it my morning yoga; orthopedists call it their bread and butter. (Know many old mogul skiers?)

My favorite runs locally are the well-formed lines on Easy Chair under the gondola at the top of Aspen Mountain, a few lines on Pump House or Scarlett’s Run just above Merry-Go-Round at Aspen Highlands.

But I’ve often wondered why there aren’t many straight-up bump runs on local mountains.

Where’s Aspen’s version of Gun Barrel at Heavenly Mountain, Grouse Mountain at Beaver Creek, or Devil’s Fiddle and Outer Limits at Killington?

Is it because there are fewer skiers locally? Or just fewer bumps skiers?

It’s coming up to sloppy spring skiing time, and while I humbly pray to Ullr for a few more powder dumps, I keep my hopes up for lots and lots of slushy bumps and days when corn snow makes heroes of us all.

The Aspen Skiing Co. reported no new snow on local slopes over the past 24 hours in its Tuesday morning snow report.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center report for the Aspen zone on Tuesday, March 25:

The avalanche danger is moderate on all aspects near and above treeline. Steep, wind loaded slopes facing N-NE-E-SE are the most suspect. Below treeline the danger will rise to moderate on all aspects as the sun and warm temperatures weaken the snowpack.

Go to http://avalanche.state.co.us/ for the full report and information on conditions statewide.