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Glorious groomers

Charles Agar
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” Recovering from a recent concussion, I was under a doctor’s orders to stay off the slopes for a little while to let my bruised brain heal.

Most important, the doc recommended that when I did get back out that I slow down and not bonk my head again ” concussions add up and I could wind up like a retired prizefighter who took a few too many shots to the head.

So it was with a little trepidation ” and even a few days after I was cleared to ski ” that I got on the hill Saturday.

My plan was to stick to the groomers and get my mojo back, but riding corduroy to me means getting up to mach speed. How can I ski Silver Bell or Ruthie’s without letting ’em rip?

I was lucky to meet up with two friends at the base of Aspen, and to stick with them for the day.

Thankfully, these two women just aren’t into defying death or destroying their knee cartilage.

In fact, they did the unthinkable: They turned, regularly and repeatedly, all the way down the mountain.

What a novel idea?!

I tried it, and liked it.

Instead of just pointing them downhill, I put my skis to work.

I didn’t even mind being passed by all of those out-of-control idiots going mach speed.

“You maniacs,” I wanted to yell. “You’re going too fast!”

Let them learn the hard way, I thought.

On Sunday, I discovered a whole new side to Aspen.

Sure, I’ve been down the groomed runs below Lift 1A before, but I always just shushed it. This time I took time to really ski.

Who knew catwalks like Magnifico, Tower Ten and Summer Road were so much fun just to look out over town on a sunny day?

So, like a retiree settling into a fixed income, I’m enjoying my new approach to skiing with no spiteful resignation ” instead, pure joy.

Groom on, snowcats!

The Aspen Skiing Co. reported no new snow on local slopes in its Tuesday morning report.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center report for Tuesday, Feb. 19:

Avalanche danger for the Aspen zone today is moderate on all aspects and at all elevations. Human-triggered avalanches remain possible. On all aspects, the most suspect areas are steep slopes with new and recent windloading.

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


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