Oh sure, I’ll ski twice a week, by Janet Urquhart | AspenTimes.com
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Oh sure, I’ll ski twice a week, by Janet Urquhart

Janet Urquhart

On a couple of scraps of paper stashed in a kitchen drawer, I kept track of last winter.

I tallied up the number of days I shoveled snow off the walks outside my building on one, and the number of times I skied on the other. Guess which list was shorter.

After careful analysis of the raw data, I’ve reached an alarming conclusion: I ripped myself off – twice.

I didn’t charge nearly enough for all that shoveling, but I paid way too much for not much skiing.

So much for my experiment with the Premier Pass, otherwise known as the kiss-your-savings-account-goodbye pass. My “skier days,” as the industry calls my occasional presence on the slopes, hardly justified my flirtation with bankruptcy.

Yes, I shelled out $999 at this time last year with every intention of, you know, skiing. A lot. A whole lot.

Somehow, my resolve to schlepp all that equipment to the office so I could ski daily, then schlepp it all home each weekend, didn’t pan out. Go figure.

This week, cringing, I divided that $999 by my skier days and silently prayed I hadn’t joined the ranks of the quintessential Aspen dumb-ass – the chump who buys a ski pass and then uses it so infrequently he’d have been better off clomping up to a ticket window and paying the single-day lift ticket price, which I seem to recall topped out at $68 last season.

With a whopping 22 skier days to my credit, I wound up paying $45.40 per outing. (Insert sigh of relief here.) My Premier Pass was not a worse investment than my Betamax VCR, the litmus test by which all expenditures are judged.

My best month of the winter was December, when I skied an average of twice a week. I squeezed in just five days in January, and only four in both February and March. By April, my skis were in the closet and my heart was in the desert.

Clearly, I don’t need more than a one-day-a-week pass, which is why I just plunked down $744 for a two-day-a-week pass. I’m pretty sure the ski company has us make our pass selection in the heat of August because they know we get delusional, thinking about snow while we’re wearing shorts. Either that or the Skico execs somehow know I’m drinking margaritas while I ponder my pass options.

Or, I’m still delirious from my labors with the snow shovel. My lackluster effort to hit the slopes is inexplicable, considering how often I was shoveling snow. It’s not like we didn’t have plenty of that cold, white crap.

I started shoveling Nov. 9 and called it a season on May 5. I cleared the walks on 49 days, but skied on less than half of them.

This season, 22 days on the slopes will translate to $33.81 per outing, given my purchase of a two-day pass. If I ski twice as often – 44 times – we’re talking $16.90 per day.

I’d call that a goal. Now bring me another margarita.

Janet Urquhart ought to forego a ski pass and skin up the ski slopes. Her column appears on Fridays.


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