I’d forgotten our first scheduled interview because: mahi-mahi. An odd reason to blow an interview, but a week earlier I’d received a call from the guy running the best poke food truck on Maui. In a rush, he informed me that the mahi were “going bonkers” and did I want a cheap, seat on his buddy’s boat leaving tonight (tomorrow?) at 2:00 am from Lahaina’s harbor. It was only after steaming 30 miles offshore and catching a slew of voracious mahi-mahi that I remembered I’d forgotten the interview. Face palm. In all honestly, the fresh ceviche I made with limes from the backyard was almost worth the mortification.
I’ve never missed an appointment, much less an interview, and here I was, sweating profusely while hiking in a Hawaiian jungle, late for my second attempt via Skype. Ski Utah was scouring Salt Lake City for three lucky snow sliders to become Team Athletes. Reading the job description was enough to make me giddy.
(You can check it out HERE.)
Two weeks later, still luxuriating in my Hawaiian housesitting gig, winter and skiing were far from my mind. My cell rang from inside my dry bag and I could see an unknown 801 number flashing beneath the transparent material. It was Ski Utah calling to offer me the gig; I tried not to fall off my paddleboard. They invited me to spend the winter exploring Utah’s 14 unique resorts, crafting Instagram takeovers, and helping the organization create photos and videos of Utah’s phenomenal mountains.
Finding snow three days after the latest storm at Powder Mountain.
Six weeks later, winter was upon us…only it seemed to be taking ice ages to get rolling. Utah’s 2017-2018 season would go down as one of the poorest performing winters on record. We waited weeks, months for the typical momentum of storms to pick up. Aside from a few respectable pulses, the big dumps remained elusive. When I look at the dismal snowfall totals when compared to our average of 500 inches, you would expect a visible cringe or sigh. The reality is, when skiing is bad in Utah, it’s still pretty awesome.
Brews at Brighton with the Ski Utah athlete crew.
I volunteered with Snowbird’s Wasatch Adaptive Program and saw firsthand how grateful their students were to just be in and among the mountains. I cried while watching a stroke survivor complete his first ski run. He was unable to communicate verbally, but he in turn cried and smiled in gratitude when I told him I had to leave early to celebrate my dad’s birthday. The setting sun illuminating Mount Superior behind the silhouette of the old Wildcat Lift. A sunny day with the Ski Utah crew in Honeycomb Canyon. An unforgettable meal and bawdy laughter at Deer Valley. Clumsy clinking beer mugs and pizza at Molly’s after a particularly frigid time night skiing. Endless powder laps on a weekday at Beaver Mountain, the 2nd generation owner showing us his favorite childhood stashes. Banter, both witty and dim on the chairlift with my friend Mike. Cracking jokes in the snowcat at Powder Mountain. A contest to see if we could ski the Snowbasin groomers top to bottom on our early season legs.
Grinning on groomers at Brighton Ski Resort
For the 2018-2019 season, I’ll continue to assist Ski Utah with Instagram takeovers and photo and video shoots. I’m most excited to begin contributing to their blog and we’ve already published a bit of summer-related content. If you need me, I’ll be busy doing snow dances in preparation for the legendary winter ahead.
» Shove Off: Utah’s Best Places to Paddleboard
» Utah’s Best Wildflower Walks and Hikes
» Last Call: 6 Things to Do in Utah Before Summer Winds Down
A clip filmed with fellow Team Athlete Dillon Green at Alta Ski Resort to celebrate the winter’s first storm cycle in January.
A video promo with the Snowbird Marketing Team to highlight Utah’s longest ski season for an Instagram post. Snowbird Video Footage by: Justin Olsen, Chris Segal, & Dave Amirault
Instagram collaborations with Ski Utah and various ski resorts.
Cheers from Baldy Brews!