We love to ski. Sometimes we say that we live to ski.
Well, we’re not ski bums, if that’s what you’re wondering. But we love to ski. Wolf and I grew up in Europe where it felt like skiing was just a part of life. When winter started, we’d start prepping our skis, pulling out our ski clothing and trying on boots to make sure everything fit, and that we’d be ready for the coming season.
Even though we live in sunny and warm southern California, it’s still pretty much how we live. The hint of winter makes us open up the garage, look inside and take inventory of our ski gear. We start dreaming about where we’ll go, what it will be like. Whether we’re strong enough to glide through knee-deep powder, or if we’ll have to play it safe and avoid as many bumpy slopes as possible. And what it will be like to ski with our young daughter when she's not in classes. Will she go down a double-black diamond slope? Will she stick to the easier slopes? Will she mind skiing in stormy conditions? Will we be able to keep up with her?
Normally we go to Mammoth Mountain, in the northern part of California. But we decided to do something a little different this time around. We headed to Mt. Bachelor, a gem of a resort just outside of Bend, Oregon. Aasulv and I had been there about 20 years ago, before we were married, before Mimi, before a lot of life. As much as we love Mammoth, we just felt a change was going to do us some good.
So how was it? Good.
No. It was…GREAT.
It was stormy. Which I don't mind. But because it was so stormy, the top of the mountain was closed. But no matter. It was beautiful. Sometimes the winds whipped like a mad witch, sometimes snow just lightly fell around us, and sometimes we caught patches of sun, and we glided through the trees, hearing nothing but the sound of our skis on the powdery snow.
While Aasulv and I skied together, Mimi took lessons at the Mt. Bachelor ski school. Her coach/instructor, Jerod, was marvelous. After just two days with him, we saw a massive improvement in her technique, and most of all, her confidence! This kid was unafraid of taking the lead, and was making shorter, sharper and quicker turns than before. When we adjusted our boot buckles or goggles after getting off the chairlift, Mimi was usually hollering, “Come on guys! I’m ready!”
Since Mimi was born, it has been our dream to ski with her. You know, you grow up doing some things with your family that have given you some of your most cherished memories. For me, skiing with my brother and parents has been one of those things. And now I’m living that dream with my husband and daughter.
On our final day, we visited the High Desert Museum. What a treat. I saw a bobcat up and close - a dream come true! Some beautiful owls. Some fish and a tarantula. (More pictures in the photos gallery below).
Hey Bend. Hey Mt. Bachelor. You’re beautiful. We love you. We’ll be back. And it won’t take another 20 years for our return.