Big Bear Skiing

I had such a blast skiing at Big Bear. Despite having to get up early in the morning, fighting crowds at lunch, and taking roughly 8 hours to drive home, it was incredible. I can't stop thinking about it.

I had been alpine skiing once before and had a lot of fun, but this was even more fun because I got to go with Forrest and our other friends from high school. Once I got the boots and skiis on, did a trial run down the bunny slope, I headed for more challenging runs.

My first time on Summit Run I fell 3 times. (I actually lost my pole the first time. Somebody was nice enough to drop it off for me as I slid quite a ways down after I dropped it.) I could not get enough after that. Summit Run was cool, and after I completed it without falling and at a pretty good pace a few times, I decided to try the moderate (blue) part of Miracle Mile. That wasn't much different than green, so the next time the ski lift brought me back up there, I tried the whole Miracle Mile run (which included a black diamond part). Woo hoo! That was fun.
My last time going down Miracle Mile, I fell again (my 4th fall). The photo above was taken right after that. 

While I had an absolutely awesome time skiing, I have to say that my favorite part of the day was getting on the ski lift with total strangers. I'd bury my face in my scarf, close my eyes, feel the snow fall on my cheeks and eyelids, and listen to friends' (though strangers to me) warm chatter about skiing, the beautiful day, their plans for New Year's Eve, gossip about mutual friends, etc. It was so beautifully serene.

photo by Jon Reuter (easily my favorite picture of the day)

After my 8th run down the mountain, I decided to ski back over to where Forrest was and we skied around on the bunny slopes for a while.

We got back to the parking lot to start heading back, and it was like we entered a parallel universe where nothing was going right. Because we had a beautiful snowy day on the mountain, we needed to put chains on the tires to get down. I'll spare you the whole story, but instead of being back at home (like we had planned) at 8:30 pm, we were, oh, just a couple of miles into our journey. There was a lot of traffic, Forrest and I froze our fingers off trying to put chains on the car, broke one set, tried to get past chain control with only one tire chained, encountered several sketchy people trying to offer their assistance. We finally made it home at about 2 am.

(More photos here, if you'd like to see.)