|Gettin' my bounce on in Squamish. (photo by Powder Mountain. Gear by Strafe, POC, Leki)|
|Loading the cats for a day of happiness...|
I was pretty psyched to give the Strafe gear a test in the deep snow, as well. Cat skiing seemed like an interesting task for the clothing, could it breathe while I sweated like crazy, but keep me warm, keep the moisture off my skin? As expected, it out performed any outerwear I've been in so far. Beauty. The cut and fit are awesome, I could move really well in it, and I didn't get wet (minus some powder flowing down the neck of the coat, but that was only because of the AWESOME FACE SHOTS, so you know, I really can't complain...)
|Whistler/Blackcomb in the distance, deep powder and steep lines straight ahead!|
The Powder guys were amazing, super friendly and professional, and of course, Blayne knew everyone there. (He's a bartender at Dusty's on the Creekside side of Whistler Mountain. Go say hi if you are in the area! Chances are, he'll remember your name the next time.)
|BT getting ready to play!|
One of the guides looked at me and said, "Don't I know you from somewhere?" I couldn't imagine where that might be, but then he nailed it. "You were coming out Singing Pass the other day with your friend! We crossed the creek together!" Awesome!
|The goods. At speed. Bliss! (photo by Powder Mountain, gear by Strafe, POC, Leki)|
|Jeff ski cutting before the drop|
|looking out the cat window|
It turns out that one of the guys on the cat was room mates in New Zealand with a friend of mine from Bridger Bowl in Montana, who now works in Aspen. The kid turned around in the seat and asked, "Hey, you're from Aspen, do you know Neil Lande?" Why yes, I do! Neil and I took a road trip to Aspen a couple of years before either of us moved here, and the experience was amazing for both of us. Neil now tunes for the Adaptive World Cup team, pretty impressive. But then again, he's a pretty impressive person.
After a full day playing in the pow, we headed back into the lodge, where our photographer was waiting for us with some excellent Powder Mountain label suds and a dvd of our adventure already cued up and playing.
|Tasty Brews waiting at the bottom...|
All in all, it was one of my most fun days of skiing ever, and to get to share it with Blayne, to get to watch him just open it up and rip around, play and bounce, to laugh in the cat, and make friends from all over, to see Neil's friend and be connected back to Bridger and to Aspen, to see the kid's MOM skiing in the deep pow, so proud of her son... it was another day that reminded me what I love about the ski community. We are all in search of bliss. And we all have a friend in common. The snow!