Thank You Winter!

As a way to cool off after a warm summer day, I am reflecting with gratitude on the best winter ever.

Dude, where's my skis!?!

Dude, where’s my skis!?!

First off, we were blessed with amazing snow. The Tahoe ski areas reported 600 – 800 inches. That’s 66 feet, by the way. But some melted in real time leaving the snow pack in the 20 – 40 foot range.

About four feet of snow seemed permanently attached to my roof. Very grateful to the builders that the house could hold the weight, especially once it melted and re-formed into an ice slab. If I had needed to build my shelter by felling trees, I have no doubt I would have perished.

Dude, where's my house?

Dude, where’s my house?

One of the benefits of having a 10’ snow berm in front of the house is that the neighbors can’t see me playing air guitar in the living room at night.

Also grateful to the power company energy audit for showing me how to save 30% on the winter bills, which still cost more than the entire rent on my first apartment. Not to mention my unending gratitude to the crews that went out in the worst of the storms so we could have heat, light, and internet! Many thanks to the plow crews who dug us out repeatedly.

Kudos to the little snowblower that could!

Kudos to the little snowblower that could!

Happy to have Subie, whose AWD didn’t break traction once, and never got stuck, even on the days when I prolly should have used the snowblower but instead choose to roar thru the powdered drive and over the berm to the street. Suberonomous kept it rubber side down, for which I am very grateful.

Words cannot describe my gratitude to have ski patrol on the mountain, especially knowing how much preparation it takes to be ready to help in an emergency on the slopes.

Nickolas Malwitz in ski patrol sled training while Jeff Malwitz and I pick our way down the bumps to check it out

Nickolas Malwitz in ski patrol sled training while Jeff Malwitz and I pick our way down the bumps to get a look near the end of the run

After a few runs down The Plunge at NorthStar I was willing to take out my camera

After a few runs down The Plunge I was willing to take out my camera

Shout out to ski area employees, especially NorthStar who persevered in keeping their lifts spinning when all the other resorts around Tahoe were on storm hold.

Normally I give thanks for black corduroy — expert runs recently groomed. However, this past year leaving the runs ungroomed was often the better choice.

Thankful for whoever broke trail when the going got flat

Thankful for whoever broke trail when the going got flat

Grateful for awesome views of the Lake Tahoe, esp at Heavenly

Grateful for awesome views of Lake Tahoe, esp at Heavenly

Happy to have a helmet tp keep my melon safe and warm, goggles to make a little bit of sense of flat light, toasty jacket, ski pants with big pockets for my collapsible tea cup, cozy base layers, special-purpose ski socks that cost more than our fathers used to pay for lift tickets.

Grateful for stiff new boots even if they gave me shin bang. Or maybe I pulled muscles by leaning back too far in the powder. One day I cut up my mouse pad to make shin guards. Not sure what it means but I did learn that mouse pads are not the best materials for wicking moisture.

Stoked to demo fat skis and get a bit more comfortable in powder. Big heartfelt thanks to Coalition Snow for the skis I did get and the complementary demo to try them out.

I am overwhelmed with gratitude for buddies to share the snow, inspire me, and bring a smile. Below are a few photos, ordered by date.

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Nickolas Malwitz and Susie Bakkan

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Stephanie and James Schramm

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Cathy House

Thanks to my "buddy of the hour" - a stranger who kept an eye on me during my first run down Silverado Canyon

Thanks to my “buddy of the hour” – a stranger who kept an eye on me during my first run down Silverado Canyon

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Kris Bergstrom

I am prolly forgetting someone (Liz I didn’t snap a pic of you skiing!) or something important and for that I apologize.

Food. Where would we be without food? It used to be that you were lucky to find a little yellow lettuce in mountain grocery stores. Now they bring the good stuff (thank you truckers and CHiPpie officers who deal with I-80 every day)

We had a gratitude enhancing event when I-80 closed for several days due to ice, snow, slides. After the storm lifted and the tourists who’d been stranded had a chance to get settled, I ventured out to the Safeway and found it had been decimated. I mean, like, all the organic chard was gone! Total bummer. And the diary case was completely empty. Turns out they’d had to throw out food that potentially spoiled in the power outage and hadn’t been restocked. The silver lining was that the filet mignon wasn’t damaged, rather it aged, and they sold it at a discount. Anyway, I am very lucky to have an amazing array of food always available, even all the way out here!

Finally, I’m grateful that ski season is not over yet as Squaw Valley offers skiing through July 4th this year!

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