I need to apologize to the high school girls I yelled at today for sideslipping the double black diamonds: "You don't belong here!" The message was hardly welcoming to these innocent visitors to our mountain paradise.
They were really cute girls, too. They were all on snowboards and I suspect they were visiting for the holiday weekend, coming in on one of the big buses in the parking lot all the way from Minnesota or South Dakota.
They had no way of knowing that one of my pet peeves is people who sideslip a chute after a powder day. Why they chose the one under the chair is a mystery, and the second time I saw them -- that's when I yelled -- they were under the cliffs on one of the nicest sustained steep slopes that just happened to still have a nice coat of foamy powder left over from yesterday. In their cute, self-consciously giggling ineptitude, they were squandering the precious resource, and even though I was taking my last run and it didn't matter to me personally, I decided to be the police.
There were three guys catching their breath at the bottom of the bowl who witnessed my hissy fit. "Weren't you ever a beginner?" one of them asked. Busted! I thought later that I should have said that I didn't know that double blacks were classified as beginner slopes.
Anyway, the reason I feel I should apologize is because I should have tried to change their behavior instead of yelling at them. If I had a trail map I could have directed these girls to the part of the mountain where they would have a good time at their level, and maybe they would stop endangering themselves, making work for the ski patrol, and pissing me off.