Tag Archives: Skiing Triple Digits

Skiing Triple Digits: Days 38-42, Vail-area Adventures

Days 38-42 of the Skiing Triple Digits Quest took me on a Lake Creek Backcountry adventure with Kelli and Val (Day 38); a PSIA Level II Certification training day on Vail Mountain (Day 39); and ski days on Vail Mountain (Days 40-42), with one incredible powder day I shared with my gal-pal Tarrie (on Day 42):

Day 38: Monday, January 6
Lake Creek Backcountry

Jan 6 trail

Hiking and skiing in the Lake Creek area with Kelli, Val, and the dogs…

Jan 6

Day 39: Wednesday, January 8
Vail, Level II Training Day

Day 40: Thursday, January 9

Day 41: Friday, January 10

Skiing in some pretty crappy conditions on Vail Mountain…

Jan 10

Day 42: Saturday, January 11

Amazing powder day skiing with Tarrie…

Jan 11

Super bright afternoon…so bright that I couldn’t see the screen on my phone, so I returned with several hilarious accidental selfies, like this one:

Jan 11 selfie1
Want more backstory?
Read about the quest here:

Skiing Triple Digits: The Quest


Skiing Triple Digits: Vail Training, Days 10-15

Day 10: Sunday, December 1
Vail Mountain New Hire Training

Day 10

I began this season working as a part-time ski instructor at Vail. Day 10 was my frist day of new hire training. On this day, I met my new crew and trained with The Chief, a great skier, a motivational instructor, and a good lift conversationalist.

Day 11: Monday, December 2
Vail Mountain New Hire Training

Day 11

I continued new hire training on Vail Mountain today and learned how dorky skiing really can be. With The Chief as our fearless trainer and guide, we re-learned the proper way to ski a wedge.

Day 12: Tuesday, December 3
Vail Mountain New Hire Training

Day 12

Another day of new hire training on Vail Mountain. The very fun Max joined us from Golden Peak for a superstar day full of of blended skills practice (basic parallel skiing, basic parallel skiing with short-radius turns, and–again–the Wedge Christie).

Day 13: Wednesday, December 4
Ski on Vail Mountain

Day 13

Finally, a day off of training. It was a beautiful outside, so I charged out to ski something more advanced than the wedge. Enjoyed a solo blue-sky bumps day!

Day 14: Friday, December 6
Vail Mountain New Hire Training

Day 14

Back to training, now with a different group of folks, including Sheila, a woman who has decided to be a ski instructor in her retirement, and the most excellent Mike Evans, trainer, skier, watcher of Hunger Games films.

Day 15: Saturday, December 7
Vail Mountain New Hire Training

Day 15

Back to the basics, again. Another day spent training on Vail Mountain with M.E. Working on basic parallel skills. Trying to carve not just any turn–but the perfect turn.

Want more backstory?
Read about the quest here:
Skiing Triple Digits: The Quest

Skiing Triple Digits: The Quest

I’m on a quest to do something I’ve never done before. The quest? To ski triple digits: to ski more than 100 days this season.

ski vailThe Backstory:
When I lived in the Front Range from 1998 to 2003, I thought that skiing more than 30 days in a season was a proud accomplishment. I snowboarded then, actually, and I lived a two-hour drive from Breckenridge. I worked full time, too, so it took a lot of dedication to drive up on the weekends, and even if I drove up every weekend for the entire season, I found that being on the mountain for more than 30 days in a season required serious dedication, effort, time, and money.

The Possibility:
I moved to Vail in the winter of 2007-2008, which is when I first wrapped my head around the idea that it was even possible to ski more than 100 days in a season. I lived in Town of Vail housing, and one of my neighbors, Sam, was a bus driver. But he was really a snowboarder. He snowboarded every day, and he found a way to adjust his work schedule so that he could either snowboard for a few hours in the morning before work or a few hours in the afternoon after work. He snowboarded all day on his days off.

west vail move

One April, I was skiing with Sam, and he told me while we were riding that lift that he’d had a great season.

“Yeah, today’s the day I break triple digits!” he said with a huge grin, his cute raccoon eyes sparkling.

“What? Triple digits?” I asked, confused.

“Yeah, today’s my 101st day on my board.” Holy hell, I thought, feeling lame for my personal best: breaking the 50-day limit that season. But he’d put the idea in my head. One day before I died, I’d ski triple digits.

skiing w sam

Triple Digits: The Time is Now.
So I’m still here in Vail, seven seasons later. And I’ve not yet skied triple digits, so I decided that this season is the one. I recently quit a full-time teaching job, and for work, I’m freelance writing and teaching part-time ski school. Like Sam, I’ll be able to work my work schedule so that I can ski. Maybe not every day. But hopefully more than 100 days this season.

Gore Range

Triple Digits: What Counts?
I don’t want to get too restrictive and obsessive about skiing triple digits this season. But my husband asked me a logical question: What counts? Could I just get on a ski lift and do one run and count that as a ski day? Legit question. Here’s what I decided:

1. Downhill skiing, on skis for 2 hours or more
2. Nordic skiing, on skis for 1.5 hours or more
3. Backcountry skiing, climbing more than 1000 feet, skiing down

As of today, I’ll be skiing Day 12. So read on to see where this quest has taken me so far, and thanks for sharing in the Triple Digits adventure!

Photo captions:
Ski lift in Vail | Moving into my shoebox apartment in West Vail | Skiing the aspens home with Sam | The Gore Range