Daydreaming while stuck in traffic on the way back from the hill last night. Here's the challenge.
You can only ski in ten US states for the rest of your life. And only at one resort in each state (eg, ten total resorts, each in a different state). Nowhere else. No Alps, no Canada, nuffin.
What are your choices?
First my States, in no particular order:
5. New Mexico
Those are the easy ones
Now getting a little harder:
Then I'll throw in:
10. Vermont. Now I know what you're saying. Maybe there's better skiing in, I don't know, Nevada. Or Maine. Or Arizona. Well, I'm sticking with Vermont here.
Now the hard part.
Utah. Right off the bat, we get into a question of definitions. Are Snowbird and Alta one resort or two? I'm going to make this one hard on myself and say they're still seperate resorts. I love Alta,even though I've skied more at Snowbird. If I go with the heart, it's a choice I could end up regretting. And what about Solitude? And Snowbasin. Argh. I'm going with Alta.
Wyoming: Jackson Hole.
Montana: With all due respect to Whitefish, Bridger, et al, there's really no choice, is there? I've never skied any of them. So the only challenge would be Big Sky vs. Moonlight, but in this case, given the latter's somewhat uncertain future and the shared pass, I'm going to call them a single resort and take the easy choice. Big Sky/Moonlight.
Idaho: I've only skied at McCall, and only for a race years ago. Idaho guys, are you going to crucify me if I take Sun Valley? Just haven't really done my homework here.
New Mexico: Taos.
Colorado: Very tough. First off. If I take Aspen, does it include Highlands? Does it include Snowmass? Because with all three, plus the town, I think that's the route I'd take. My gut is that Aspen and Highlands is a fair combo, but I can't have Snowmass too. Hmm. Telluride? Great town right on the mountain. Crested? Place I've skied and really liked. Winter Park? Steamboat? Utlimately, if you give me Aspen and Highlands together, plus the town, I've gotta go that route.
California: I've never skied California, incredible, really, as I've spent a lot of time there. So this inevitably is a Squaw /Alpine Meadows/Kirkwood thing, right? I think I'm going Mammoth. Tahoe guys: let me have it.
Washington: I love Crystal, so this is an easy choice, right? But what about Baker (never been)? All that snow. Hmmm. A surprisingly tough choice. Baker.
Vermont: I'm going Mad River. I learned to ski there. I learned to ski powder there. I learned to ski bumps there. I learned to drink with a fake ID there. But I'm tempted to go against my heart and choose Jay Peak. More snow. Maybe much more snow. I won't though. MRG.
So, there you have it. Tough call on Colorado. Impossibly tough call for California. Toughish calls for Washington and Vermont, too. And I'm admittedly clueless about Idaho. Also, kind of a tough call on the tenth state, could've been one of the other western states, or even Maine (Sugarloaf).
Now, weigh in...