Winter storm Hercules is crushing the Northeast. With over 6 inches of snow today and 6-12 inches forecasted overnight, today was the cutest powder day I've ever had. Yes that's right, it was cute. Not epic, not deep, not bottomless, CUTE. Here's why.
1. It's the East Coast - I love skiing on the east coast, but let's be real. The mountains here are small. So by default all East Coast powder days are kind of cute.
2. I skied a teeny tiny ski area with 1000 vertical feet - When Boston is in the bullseye of a Noreaster, as it is with this storm, that means the ski areas getting the most snow are tiny. Teeny Tiny. My criteria for skiing this storm was to find somewhere within a two hour drive. That limits me to mountains like Blue Hill. Blue Hill has 309 vertical feet of skiing. How adorable is that? They tell you the vertical feet to the ones place because it's so small they couldn't just round it off to 300. I chose a resort that met this criteria but will not disclose the location because some locals showed me around and I will be discussing their secret stashes in this post.
3. The temperature was teeny tiny - The thermometer on my car read 4 degrees when I pulled into the parking lot this morning. What an adorably small temperature. Oh wait it was freezing. You know what that means? Light and Dry.
4. Hanging out with Geezers - I sat next to this old retired dude during lunch. We connected over the fact that I'm a teacher and he used to be a guidance counselor. He told me all about his life and how now he spends all of his time skiing and playing golf. He gave me some great advice too: As soon as you get married stock as much money you can into a retirement fund. Did I mention he was old and old people are adorable?
5. Backcountry skiing in a minivan - This is the most awesome and most adorable part of the day. At 2PM, after skiing numerous powder laps in bounds, I saw a sign for a cross country trail. I asked one of the patrollers about it and he perked up telling me all about how you can follow a ridge out of the resort to this awesome backcountry area that drops right back into the resort. I skied out on the cross country trail and was putting on my skins when all of a sudden 3 high school kids skied up behind me. I asked them if they knew the area and they said yes. After a brief moment chatting we decided to ride together. We came across the cutest little tree while hiking that was decorated with little ornaments made out of food. They were in the shapes of happy faces and puppies! Right before we dropped in, Perry, who was guiding us, asked if I was going to ski back to the resort, because he was taking us down the other side of the mountain that dropped into a local village. He said I could ride back with them if I wanted. I love adventures so of course I agreed. We bush whacked a bunch but also had some really great turns. These kids totally ripped. Eventually a trail system led us out of the woods to a parking lot for an elementary school. Yes an elementary school, it was so cute it was ridiculous. I was looking around for Perry's car when he whipped out his cell phone and dialed, yup you guessed it, his mom! 5 minutes later his mom picked us all up in a GMC Yukon (Not a minivan, but equivalent if you live in a mountain town) and drove us back to the resort!! I could not believe this was their life in high school. What an awesome way to grow up. This is probably the cutest backcountry experience I will ever have in my life. Thanks again Perry!
Hercules continues to rage outside. I'm resting up for tomorrow, which will hopefully serve up something more than cute, but hey, as my 86 year old cousin Murray used to say "A cute powder day is better than any day of work", or something like that...