Ski blog: Discovering the pow pow |

Ski blog: Discovering the pow pow

Melanie Wong
Vail, CO Colorado

I fully appreciate the gloriousness of powder now.

I remember when I first inquired of our skiing and Vail reporter, Ed Stoner, what exactly was pow pow? And I still didn’t get it until the last time I skied Beaver Creek.

The powder was great ” up to mid-thigh in some places. At first I was taken aback by the bumpiness and the fact that I couldn’t see what my skis were going over.

It’s great to go with people who are better skiers than you, but are patient enough to wait for you as you dig your skis out of the powder. My friends have skied for years, and they promptly took me on Goshawk, my first double black. It’s a mogul run, and I like moguls, but from the top, it looked steep and the piles of powder looked ginormous.

Oh, what the heck? I think, and go for it. I won’t lie. I fell a few times, once turning a graceful 180 before sliding several feet on my stomach. Then I had to army crawl back up several moguls to find my lost ski. I became quite the expert at that, doing the “poke test” with my pole, kind of like spearing fish, to locate the ski under several feet of powder.

But at the bottom of the hill, I looked back up at it. Wow, that looked steep from the base.

“You did a double black!” one of my friends said.

“I know!” I replied, trying to shake out the snow from inside my shirt.

Then we went down Birds of Prey, the world championships downhill course. I always imagined it as a long, vertical, glorified Slip n’ Slide. I can’t even imagine going down that without the help of powder. Maybe someday.

Next, we did Thresher Glade. It was gorgeous, and not a soul was in sight. I was really slow and ended up hugging a tree trunk once, but man it was fun!

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