It finally happened. After multiple years without a season pass + two years with a barely used season pass I finally found my snowboard stoke. Finally! On groomers, no less.

I rediscovered giddy. That good, excited giddy where you’re literally stoked on oxygen because everything felt so incredibly perfect. For me, this joy for life always pops up when I’m outside. Doing something, feeling everything. I’m sure I’ve overshared about moments when everything clicks while running along trails or hiking up to mountain summits. But this was different. This was something I discovered with my snowboard strapped to my feet.

Chasing Snowflakes; Back in the Day

A handful of years ago I was the girl who spent 18 hours driving across the ‘fly over’ states with my snowboard + gear tucked into the back of a borrowed minivan. I was chasing snow + stoked about spending hours upon hours attached to my snowboard. We would ride one resort all day, then venture over to another for night riding. We packed lunches in our pockets to eat on the chairlift so we wouldn’t waste any time. We were crazy…for snow + just in general.

Now that I live out here + have access to a daily life like that the thought of it exhausts me. Maybe it’s because I no longer have a broke college kids need to make the most of my winter break time + money. Or maybe I’m just in another place in life [you know, older + wiser…or older + slower]. Either way, my stoke for snow has been waning.

I have actually talked about spending next winter in the southern hemisphere just to avoid the chaos of winter. Not just because the tourism of Summit County is eating at me, but because I’ve lost my desire to chase those snowflakes.

Until today.

Giddy on Groomers; Keystone Resort

Today that changed. This morning I arrived at work an hour early with my snowboard in tow + a helmet strapped to my head. We headed out the ER’s back door + strapped in for first chair…2.5 hours before the lifts opened. Myself, the nurse supervisor, a charge nurse + our medical director were headed up to the ski patroller’s morning meeting at the top of the mountain. Of course we were going for reasons other than first dibs on a mountain of gorgeous groomers…but that was a great motivator.

After the meeting we started the best commute to work yet…down a mountain, on a snowboard.

We set out on completely untouched groomers. The runs were empty, the groomer ripples were perfect, the air was crispy cold. I had no high hopes for my morning when we started out. We hit a green run then veered off onto a blue. A blue full of rollers, still perfectly groomed + completely free of other humans. This is where the fun began.

The first roller popped up, the ripples pulsed under my board. My feet responded, instinctively. My carves were simple, easy, fluid. My mind was clear, my heart was soaring. Aside from the medical director ahead of me + my nursing supervisor behind me the run was wide open. Without anyone around me to ‘keep an eye on’ or kids in front of me to avoid or random person careening around me at high speeds. I wasn’t on high alert to survive this time, I was in the moment + loving every gulp of frozen air.

It was back. That giddy stoke that makes your heart rush + your grin goofy. It happened…I might actually love snowboarding again. Don’t get me wrong, there’s no way I’m going to hit the mountain on a weekend, I’m not crazy. But I just might be on board to hit the slopes just for funsies.

Up next — early morning skinning, dibs on first tracks + more giddy snowflake love.

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Bits + Pieces of My Life…As Seen in the Story Above

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