A gorgeous  Easter weekend has spilled over into the new week.  Let’s consider the marvel of skiing on a Monday, letting the emails pile up and the to-do lists linger. There are freshly groomed turns to be had under wisps of clouds and a hot air balloon taking advantage of a leisurely float in the still skies. Stash  the last  Cadbury egg in your ski jacket and steal away for our second-to-last Monday on the slopes. The final countdown has begun, and all indicators point to more winter rolling in to town to celebrate this spring fling.

The cord is ripe for carving as you venture off South Peak toward Westside. #gopro

Last week’s pile of fresh powder is packed now. Overnight, the cats have tailored the snow to suit long, silky turns.  The mountain is skiing fast today, perfect for cruising Sunshine Lift Line, Westside, High Noon and Rainbow. Sunset to Moonlight is a sweet trip down from the Four Points lift. Heavenly Daze to Ted’s Ridge makes for a gorgeous freshly groomed trip to the base area.

It’s warm, sugary skiing and riding out there!

Ted’s Ridge — happy schussing toward Sleeping Giant. #gopro

The events that mark Springalicious, Steamboat’s final 10-day blast of the season, officially start on Friday, but emotionally, we’re there — stockpiling extra ski minutes in preparation for 2015/16’s  last tracks. Tonight is the grand finale for night skiing. Thursday is the second to last Sunset Happy Hour at the top of the gondola, guaranteed to pack the house with a locals’ bluegrass favorite, the Old Town Pickers.  Great free concerts in Gondola Square come fast and furious after that, with Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, Ozomatli and Leftover Salmon — let alone the rest of the melting-snow shenanigans.

Craig Kennedy rippin’ up the pow at Steamboat Ski Area. Photo courtesy of Andy Kennedy.

Today, however, I want to give a shout out to another kind of celebration happening on the mountain. It’s Craig Kennedy’s re-birthday. Twenty years ago, he suffered a life-altering ski injury. Today, on the anniversary of that crash, we gather together with this incredible skier and highly admirable human being, to celebrate the amazing life he has created, the epic turns he continues to burn, and the inspiration for adventure he has stoked in his STARS clients and other adaptive skiers, water skiers, mountain bikers, kayakers and any other adrenaline sport you can dream up, all over the world.

Take a run with Craig today, (if you can catch him). Friends and fans will gather together with him at 3 p.m. at the top of Vertigo.  I can pretty much guarantee Craig will be the fastest one down.

Cheers to you, Craig!

Jennie Lay, Telemark skier

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