I was on Ski Patrol at Stevens Pass in the 70s. One year we hosted a regional competition where teams from ski areas throughout the region came to compete in things like toboggan course, orienteering, etc. At the end of the competition our patrol put on a dinner for the team members at the warming hut at the top of Barrier Chair. (Since then it has been replaced by Skyline, and the warming hut is gone.) The regular patrol members like me were told that only the competitors could take part in the feast and we had to fend for ourselves.
The evening before the event there was a large snow storm that covered all of Western Washington all the way down to sea level. The lowlands were buried in unexpected snow and the roads were awful, people were asked to stay at home. We were already at the ski area so it didn't really have an unusual effect on our operations but few people actually made it to the hill. It turned out that no other teams besides the couple that Stevens entered showed up. Their fees had been paid, so there was no problem but they weren't there to take part so it was kind of lonely for the Stevens teams.
At the end of my shift, about 5:00, I was stepping out of my skis at the ski patrol building when a patroller came out and asked me what I was doing. Apparently the big ending feast had been paid for and prepared, but there was nobody to eat it since none of the teams showed up. We were all invited to the warming hut to chow down for free!
Being a young man in my early 20s I was not about to turn down an offer of a free meal, so I clicked back in and made a beeline for the chair lift. The food was really good (lots better than my usual TV dinner) and to top it off there were all the free drinks we wanted! Well, I was not about to pass up such a fantastic offer and I imbibed freely. When it was time to go I was experiencing some "minor" balance issues, but there was only one way down, at least in my foggy thought processes. I was chagrined to note that I was in full Patrol uniform, crosses, fanny pack, radio and I had to ski down the mountain drunk as a skunk. I remember looking straight ahead and praying that there would be no accidents along the way. I had decided that I would have to ignore one if one appeared. Luckily, none did.
This was the first and last time I ever skied drunk. It was really stupid and I learned my lesson well. Never again.
Edited by Posaune - 2/14/13 at 7:40am