Outta here | AspenTimes.com

Outta here

Paul E. Anna
Aspen, CO Colorado

Well, it is as official as official gets. On Wednesday, Su Lum, much to the pleasure of her dachshund puppies Nicky and Freddie (they are soooo cute!), declared, I quote here, “Winter is over.”

That’s right, the snow may still fall, says Su, but as far as she is concerned our long community orgy of winter powder is, well, kaput, as a dachshund might say.

If she is right, and that is a big assumption, given the snow we already have on the hill and the strangeness that has marked this winter, then the time is right to start planning getaways. I know, many of us have already plotted, booked and budgeted for our annual escape to paradise. But for those who have yet to get a ticket to ride, it is now time to dial 1-800-get-me-someplace-warm.


The calendar went wacko this year, what with daylight savings time kicking in the day after the winter solstice and Easter Sunday at its earliest since 1913. And now winter is over with a weekend still remaining in March. So embrace change and get out of town.

The first choice for many is to pack up the car, fill it with $4-a-gallon gas, and find the most isolated campsite possible in the Utah desert. That sounds mighty nice.

Mexico is another popular spot to spot locals. Up and down the Baja Peninsula, ZGers who have traded their snowboards for surfboards will soon be bronzing their pasty bods in the springtime sunshine. Sayulita has become hot with locals who like to longboard in Banderas Bay. The divers love Isla Mujeres while the party people stay in Cancun. Oh, and for the “OM” crowd, it is Maya Tulum for serenity on the mat.

Fly from Denver to Honolulu nonstop on United’s Flight 43 and you’re sure to see some familiar faces, as it has become the direct link for many Roaring Fork Valley locals from one paradise to another. With a 2:59 p.m. arrival, it is easy to get to the beach in time for Mai Tais at the Halekulani and a sunset. All of the islands, but particularly Maui and Kauai, have become so popular with Aspenites that it is nearly impossible not run into someone you know on your trip.

And the offseason destination of choice for globe-trotting Aspenites has become Costa Rica. The tales of jaunts to San Jose followed by the drives through rainforests to tropical seaside hideaways, with perfect point breaks and fresh fruit ripening on the trees while everybody spends the days in naked splendor, are becoming the stuff of local legend.

We live in a place that offers 365 days of brilliance every year and yet our urge to travel, to try new things, is insatiable. We also have the tools to take us from the mountains to the deserts to the seas on our own personal whim. All we have to do is make reservations.

Winter was great. Keep it going this spring.