Oh, the night has been good to the conditions, putting the powder in the refrigerator to save till this morning and welcoming the grooming fairies to work their magic on open runs. In the frigid hour of skiing that started my morning, I got all sorts of turns, and I felt a whisper of powerful winter sunshine. This week has hosted a crazy storm, sweeping in from the northeast and hesitating here to dump feet of snow on our mountain. I got my Sorels back out, put my snow-tire-less car away and immersed myself in yet another week of winter.

First Sun.
First sun

Although the early morning has been a cold one, I have faith that the sun is coming out strong, and it will be a beautiful day to zip around on Steamboat’s cold snow. My zipping — taking place on Huffman’s, High Noon, Spike and Valley View — was fun and fast, but I really found joy in the still soft bumps of Sunnyside and One O’Clock as well as the freshies I found just off the beaten path all over the mountain. As the day matures, keep checking  in on your powder stashes because they have a lot to offer on days like these.

Priest Creek Waits for Dawn.
Priest Creek waits for the sun.

Steamboat hosts one of the coolest events in skiing today on Voo Doo at our Park Smalley Freestyle Complex. The U.S. Freestyle Championships are ongoing throughout this weekend with the men’s and women’s aerial competitions today. Freestyle skiing combines mogul skiing and aerial jumps in a fast-paced, gravity-defying competition. Mogul qualifications and finals took place yesterday, dual mogul competitions are tomorrow, and today’s aerial jumps are a truly astounding event.

The jumpers fly off 2 to 4 meter jumps flinging up to 20 meters above their ultimate landing. While in the air, they preform a series of flips and twists to be judged and scored. Many competitors do as many as three flips and simultaneously up to five twists. It was my mother who noticed a few years ago that the skiers are in the air for long enough that a coach can give them advice through an ear piece during their jumps. The event will go on throughout the day with qualifications in the morning and finals beginning at 12:40. For a full schedule of the competition, click here.

Freestyle Jumps.
The freestyle jumps

After the competition, Steamboat hosts another Bud Light Rocks the Boat show with The Goonies, a rock band from Boulder. Have a great, fun-filled Saturday at Steamboat!


Willow Fitzgerald, Telemark skier

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