I used to consider the end of the season in Chile, the end of the ski year. It seemed to make sense; skiing starts in November, and goes as late as possible – in my case that just happened to be until October sometime. Now, I see it differently. My season in Chile is the beginning of the year, and when I finish in the north sometime in May or early June, this is the end of the year. I consider June and July my “off-season,” which means this little break is more like an intermission.
Taking about five-weeks off of snow at this time of year is difficult. Literally everyone I know is excited about skiing and making their first turns of the season. Even though I just finished skiing a couple weeks ago, and the snow is just barely filling in some of the first cracks in the mountains, even I can’t help but think I’m missing something.
This past weekend we went on a nice, easy, long hike near the Continental Divide. Hiking in the early season is a great way to acclimatize to the higher elevations, and it’s always good to see the mountains when the snow just starts to fill in the couloirs that we will ski later. It’s been warm here lately – we’re still riding bikes in shorts most days. So I was a little surprised to see a few lines are already ready for turns.
This time off snow is really good for me. I get to ride bikes and go to the gym. I will ski better if I take more time off. At the same time it’s so tempting to get out there and make some turns on some steep terrain in the early season. But just like everyone, I will have to be patient. It’s fun to be stoked. The season will be here soon!