Change of seasons | AspenTimes.com

Change of seasons

Paul E. Anna

It’s hee-ere.Well, OK, that may be a bit premature. But please note that on Tuesday, Aug. 9, 2005, deep in an aspen grove on the Aspen Mountain side of the North Star Nature Preserve, a yellow leaf, perhaps the first of the season, was spotted. That can mean just one thing fall – and with it, winter – is right round the corner. OK, again, that may be a bit premature, and dare I say a bit optimistic, but dammit all, this is still a ski town, and signs of an impending ski season should be both noted and revered. There is a standard line around Aspen that people came for the winter, but stayed because the summers are so great. Now, with the roles changing and summer fast becoming the main tourist season in town, people seem to look a little less forward to the winters. But there is still a cadre, nay, an army of souls, who live for the time between November and April when they board, ski, shoe or glide across the soft snows of winter. Those are the people who know the excitement of catching sight of the first golden leaf.It means that we are closer to the day when they drop the ropes than we are to last season’s memories. We are closer to the day when Deep Temerity debuts. Closer to the day when the new six-pack will whip us to the top of Sam’s Knob for the first time. In short, it means we are closer today to nirvana than we were yesterday. For the rest of you, who are part of the follow-the-sun crowd, don’t despair. It is just creeping into mid-August, and summer still has plenty of dog days to go. There will be lots of warm evenings where the sun does not set until after 8 p.m. Where the temps reach the 80s and golf and hiking and biking are the activities of choice. But for the army, be advised that the days are already growing shorter and the earth is beginning its tilt toward winter. There are just 103 days until ski season. And that, my friends, is golden.