The snow is melting. The ground is finally being revealed. I haven’t seen grass (brown or green, dead or alive) in my yard since November. But I think we can safely say that we have survived our first winter in Vermont. It was a long one.
When we moved here last summer, many of our local friends warned us that winter was long and hard. Some even thought we might change our mind about living in Vermont after our first full winter. Fortunately, that did not turn out to be the case.
Yes, the winter was long. And I am happy to see signs of spring. But I also took the advice of friends who have lived here for a while, and I kept myself active and engaged all winter long. For me, that meant skiing.
I did not grow up skiing. I have skied a bit, but I have never been any good at skiing. This winter, I really dedicated some time to learning how to downhill. I spent many days on the green slopes at Burke Mountain. I know those trails like the back of my hand! But I wanted to have complete confidence before braving the top of the mountain.
Soon enough, though, I was not only braving the blues but enjoying them. And before long I dared one or two of the easier blacks. All in all, I had a great time and improved my skiing skills immensely. Though I am happy for winter to end, I am also eager for it to return – so I can ski some more!
One of the things I enjoyed about skiing was the beautiful views you can have from the top of a mountain. Many times I would stop on the side of a drop off and just admire the view for a few minutes. Of course, I also enjoyed hanging with friends at the Bear Den after a few runs! Chili and beer are really good after a full day of skiing!
Vermont winters are survived by learning how to enjoy them. Skiing proved a pleasant ally in this effort for me. Next season, I hope to make the black trails my friends as well.
By the way, all the pictures below are from Burke Mountain, including a few photos after they got hit with three feet of snow. If you ski Burke during a weekday, it can feel like your own private ski hill.