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December 1, 2013

Powder: It’s an addiction!

IN: Stories

If you are a compulsive weather watcher this time of year and experience a case of the shakes between snow storms, you just might be a powder junkie. If you are willing to jump out of your nice, warm bed well before light, dress for the cold and jump in your rig to join the parade of your fellow powder pigs headed to the ski hill, you just might be a powder junkie. And yes, if you have ever waited anxiously for the ski patrol to drop the ropes opening the cat tracks to the Superior chairlift on a fresh snow day only to be lured off the trail before you even make it to War Eagle, you are definitely a powder junkie!

Just what is it about powder skiing that makes it so addictive? Where to start!

It’s the thrill of the hunt for the perfect turn, the perfect line, and the lightest snow. You begin to find your secret stashes or know who to follow that can lead you to their secret stashes. And yes, time is of the essence because first tracks are the reward for your early efforts.

It’s the spirit of the adventure, heading off the well groomed trails into the great unknown of the “sidecountry” where stumps can loom dangerously under a jaunty cap of snow or low hanging branches wait to smack you atop your helmet if you don’t accomplish that gymnastics move you had planned. Once you’ve committed to jumping off trail, there may be no easy way back to the hero turns on corduroy. You are obligated to venture out where the snow may be inconsistent and vary from turn to turn.

It’s the sensation of floating and gliding as you maneuver your skis down the slope with perfect rhythm and timing. Take a break at the bottom and look back up at the artwork you have created on a canvas of white. Notice the symmetry of the turns occasionally dotted by a pole plant. Next run will turn those S’s into 8’s!

It’s the sheer beauty of it! The surroundings are beautiful. The snow is beautiful. And if you are lucky, you will be sharing this experience with your ski buddies.

So, if you own a pair of skis that only come out to play on those powder days, you know exactly where your powder leashes are at any given time, and you are the one followed by fledgling powder pigs, you are a powder junkie! Welcome to the club!