New Year's Resolution: I'm Finally Going to Ski 100 Days
Tuesday, December 31, 2019
Written by John Bleh
It's tough to make rounds in the ski world and not eventually have someone ask you, "How many days did you ski last year?" And oh how I loathe that question. I've always been one to think that it's more about the quality of the days you ski rather than the quantity, though truth be told maybe that's my inner fair-weather skier trying to justify my low day counts.
Since joining Sugarbush in 2011, my ski season has typically ranged from 30-50 days. Impressive to the casual skier and potentially humiliating to the diehards, not to mention fellow industry professionals. But it's never really bothered me. I ski when I want. I ski when the conditions are good: usually powdery or sunny days. As someone with such easy access to the mountain, why not ski that way? Why toil through tough conditions when they'll turn around in a day or two? Then again, maybe I am just a little lazy.
I know plenty of people that ski as often as they possibly can. I'm sure many of you operate that way, whether it's sneaking out a couple runs before you head to work, or just maximizing every weekend and vacation you can to be here. I have friends and colleagues who ski 150 days a year. Win gets out there and easily gets at least 100 days every year.
I also know that I'm probably losing your respect with every additional sentence you read. But I promise I love this sport. I'm passionate about it, I enjoy all types of trails and conditions, I love the ski culture, I just also haven't ever had that ski every minute of my life attitude. Then again, I've never had that mentality about anything in life. I think that's totally fine. I like doing lots of things, but I'm not obsessively head over heels about any one of them.
My office used to be in the Lower Administration building about a half-mile down the access road, but as of last fall I moved up onto the resort. Reducing even that small amount of effort it takes to drive up from the office and go skiing has certainly had a positive effect on my ski days. Last season, I skied 60 days, and that was with a several-month-old baby stealing away my sleep and replacing it with constant colds.
Not all of the days were as perfect as I used to aim for, but I started to appreciate the act of just getting on a chairlift, banging out a couple of runs, and heading back into the office. I felt a little more in tune to our mountain - to the product I'm always trying to sell - and I gained further appreciation for the good days because I was out skiing the bad or mediocre ones. Plus, it was nice to split up the workday with getting some exercise, same as I'm sure some of you hit the gym at lunch.
And so I feel like with 21 days already under my belt this winter, the infamous 100-day club is within my reach. I need to hit it at least once I keep telling myself. I've also told myself that if I can get to 35 or 40 days by the end of January, it should be smooth sailing through the next 3 months to hit the century mark, with plenty of room for a variety of day-off excuses.
So there's my 2020 resolution: finally ski 100 days. Will I enjoy every day? Will I feel like I'm forcing myself to ski more than I want? I'm not totally sure. But since I've officially put it in writing, I hope all of you will hold me accountable to join the club. Last year they gave out 100-day hats. I hope to don one for Opening Day next season.