One major advantage to living in Calgary is the proximity to some of the best skiing in the world. Since I just started skiing a year ago, I’m still discovering the hills here and in BC, and that’s about as fun as winter can get. Yesterday I took a day off work and hit the slopes at Lake Louise.
Louise is a beautiful mountain, huge – with four peaks and an obscene amount of terrain to cover. Their gondola and many chairs move skiers quickly around the mountain and the lines are never long, even at the peak of busy weekends. The scenery is spectacular. One of my favorite things to do is to take the top of the world chair and ski down the back side of the mountain. It’s very quiet there like in a splendid cathedral, and the majestic mountains on all sides swooping down into a large bowl that is so pure and white that it hardly looks possible. It’s hard not to feel awe at the forces that created it, and not to feel insanely lucky at being able to see it with a ride in a chairlift.
Sometimes the skies are overcast, and the bottom of the valley is covered by clouds. The surreal feeling of watching quiet majestic peaks around you rise out of the swirling gray clouds is intoxicating. I literally feel like pinching myself to make sure I’m not dreaming this phenomenal landscape. And when the winters feel too long, and the summer oh so far away – obscured by another foot of snow – I can think back on Louise and feel glad there’s still a few weeks of skiing left.