On the Hill: The stress is gone | AspenTimes.com

On the Hill: The stress is gone

ASPEN ” Thank God that the stress of the ski season is over.

I’m not talking about the hustle and bustle of the past several months, or that the offseason is here.

I’m talking about my internal stress level going down now that I don’t have to get on another chairlift or gondola for at least seven months. Yes, I’m afraid of heights. Terrified, actually. Yet I wouldn’t dream of living anywhere but the mountains.

My phobia is quite inconvenient being that I’m an avid skier. Every single day that I ski, I’m stressed out. I hate to admit that I’ve even skipped days on the mountain because I didn’t feel like being afraid. If it’s a windy day (there have been plenty of them this spring) forget about it. You won’t see me up there.

It’s not like I haven’t tried to get over it. Last week, my nephew came to visit, and we went to Snowmass so he could ride the terrain park. The only chairlift I refuse to ride is Coney Glade because it’s so high that I literally get physically ill when I’m on it. But I sucked it up and got on for my nephew’s sake. When we off-loaded, I looked at him and told him I couldn’t do it again. He rode the park by himself the rest of the day.

Sunday morning was my last gondola ride to the top of Ajax for quite awhile. I internally rejoiced during the Easter service at the Sundeck, thinking how grateful I am that I came out unscathed.

Of course, the damn thing had to stop while I was over the gulch. It’s hard for me to think positive thoughts while dangling there. All I can envision is the cable snapping and me catapulting to my death.

I’m stressed out enough. I don’t need the extra burden. I’m happily keeping my feet on the ground this spring, summer and fall. And when the winter comes back around, I guess I’ll have to face my fear again.


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