Playing hooky |

Playing hooky

Jeanne McGovern

I cannot tell a lie: I played hooky yesterday, and it was really nice.You see, I was supposed to work all day as I’m taking Friday off (I usually have Tuesdays off). I had a babysitter lined up and was headed into the Times’ office when two things happened: My husband called to remind he was working a split shift at the ski shop he manages, and, more importantly, the sun came out.What started as a gray, spitting-snow day turned on a dime around 11 a.m. The clouds lifted to reveal a blinding blue sky, and the crisp morning air warmed to a toasty spring afternoon (which turned wintry again by sundown, go figure).Beyond the fine weather, though, was some excellent skiing. In just a few short hours – I couldn’t take the whole day off, now could I? – we managed to make a lot of runs on Aspen Mountain (or at least it felt like a lot of runs on my one-day-a-week-if-I’m-lucky ski legs). A few laps on the quad, a couple of runs down Ruthie’s and then we made the perfect call: Lift 1A.It’s been years since I’ve spent a spring afternoon doing laps on the lower mountain: Super 8, Corkscrew and Slalom Hill were in great shape, hardly a rock to be found. Soft but not slushy snow with plenty of good lines. Even Silver Rush was skiable (a little rocky at the top, but steep and sweet toward the bottom). The cruisers were fast, fun and relatively uncrowded.Of course, truth be told, the best part of my afternoon escape was the lift ride. There’s something so great about riding a slow-moving, two-man chair with a husband you rarely get to ski with on a warm and sunny weekday afternoon – especially when you’re supposed to be at work.Today’s report: Local slopes are boasting a fresh coat of the fluffy stuff this morning, and a bluebird day is shaping up. Aspen Highlands and Snowmass both picked up 5 inches of new snow in the past 24 hours, Aspen Mountain has 4 inches and Buttermilk is reporting 3 inches.

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