Wintry Spring Day
Today, on this first full day of spring, it feels very much like winter is lingering in Steamboat, and it is fantastic! With soft and fluffy groomed slopes and untouched Champagne® Powder stashes in the trees, Wednesday boasts the best of both worlds.
With snow-covered pines, a temperature of 19 degrees, a 77-inch base and a few inches of fresh snow overnight, the summit is in perfect condition. Groomed slopes like Flintlock, High Noon, Storm Peak South and Sunset are covered in thick, soft and fluffy corduroy, perfect for carving some really fun turns. And in the trees, untouched Champagne® Powder stashes are perhaps a bit hidden, but waiting to be found by those eager skiers and riders.
Monday, the last day of winter, surprised us all with a 9-inch powder day at mid-mountain and a 14-inch powder day at the summit. While I was not able to tote my two young boys around on the mountain that day, I did hear reports of it being an awesome powder day, maybe even the best one of the year! Today, I could tell that Monday was a great powder day simply based on the leftovers I found in the trees, two days later.
Some of the steeper, more popular tree runs like Shadows, Closet and Two Thirty Trees were more tracked out, but if you venture into the mellow trees in the Sunshine Peak area (like the ones between Flintlock and Quickdraw), you can find untouched powder stashes just waiting for your skis or snowboard to find them.
For me, Wednesday mornings are my days of “adult skiing” as I like to call it. For the most part, outside of Wednesdays, if I’m on skis, I’m with one or both of my kids. On Saturday, my husband and I took our older son (age 4) skiing and had a blast cruising groomers with him in the warm sunshine.
He even tackled Vagabond on Saturday for the first time! While we don’t necessarily get to ski the terrain we’re used to skiing on our own, it’s so much fun and so rewarding to witness how much our son has grown and developed as a skier in the past three months. Steamboat is an incredibly family-friendly mountain — one that we enjoy immensely with our own kids.
On Tuesday, I took our youngest son (age 2 in just 10 days) for a “few runs” as I told my husband on the magic carpet. He is using tiny skis that strap on to his snow boots because he’s still too little for a true ski set-up (that will come next season). At nearly 2, the most important thing is just letting him figure out balance on skis and simply introducing him to the sport.
He skis between my legs, and I mostly hold him up when we ski down the little slopes, but on flat terrain, he’s learning how to balance all on his own. That balance will help him transition into next ski season when he’s on real skis and learning how to tackle runs like Why Not.
When my kids are not on skis, they enjoy rides in Steamboat’s little red wagons around Gondola Square. Pick up these little red wagons at the One Steamboat Place entrance, close to the gondola entrance or at the Kids’ Vacation Center to tote your kids and their gear around. It’s fun for the kids, and it’s definitely a bonus for the parents, as well!
Erin Campbell, Alpine skier