I Will Not Ski a Single Day This Year – And That Hurts

Steven Agar |
Winter Park, CO. Credit: Ikon Pass

This is the first year for as long as I can remember that I won’t ski. I will not get a single day of skiing this winter season. It hurts even to type that.

For the previous decade and more, Winter Park, CO, has been my winter solace, my escape from ‘real life’ in the UK. The reason I would work solidly for eight months in the summer to get those four months of being a ski bum in the winter. 100 days always the target.

The past decade of my life, jobs, decisions, and spending (or lack thereof) have centered on winters in Colorado.

Then the virus struck.

It cut short the season last year. We fled Colorado, with less than 24-hours’ notice, on the last airplane to Heathrow out of Denver.

We comforted ourselves that everything would soon be back to normal and we could return to Colorado next winter. Maybe even fit in a little trip to South America during the summer to make up for lost ski days. How wrong we were.

Most of Earth’s ski resorts closed due to Coronavirus.

I can remember the feeling of despair when we realized, late summer/early fall, that even winter 20/21 was looking unlikely. After working all summer again, not really seeing family due to enforced lockdowns and restrictions, and pinning all our hopes on once again feeling the wind on our faces and the champagne powder of Colorado hitting us in the face, it hit like a freight train. All hope was lost. We wouldn’t ski this winter.

We’ve still felt the cold and wind on our faces. But the miserable wet, cold, windy days, with ‘kinda-snow’ in the north-west of England, are nothing to get excited about. Running in the hills is exhilarating. I love that, but that only began as a means to keep fit for skiing. My usual summer full of local races has been obliterated, offering zero motivation to grind out those 400s on the track, mile repeats, or make just one more hill sprint.

As winter marched on without us, European ski resorts began closing to tourists, and most remain closed to this day. Everywhere we turned, doors that could lead to skiing were slamming one-by-one. The UK won’t let us leave (I think skiing is essential travel, but unfortunately, border officials do not), and even if we could leave, other countries won’t let us in. We even looked into heading to Russia…

winter park,
I’d be happy to put up with this Pioneer lift line at Winter Park Resort, CO, if it meant I was skiing. Credit: Reddit

We’ve tried to console ourselves that this winter wouldn’t have been the same; all the liftlines, rules and regulations, reservations, potential closures, and that we’re better off giving it a miss this year. Who are we kidding?! I’d go through that every day to click into my bindings.

Of course, all made worse sitting here behind my keyboard, watching my writer and editor colleagues shredding daily, hitting deep stashes in Alaska, Utah, Wyoming, California, and Idaho. You don’t know how lucky you are…

Today was the final nail in the coffin. I just clicked ‘defer’ on my Ikon Pass. Whatever happens to global borders, I now don’t have a pass. My purchase has been deferred to next season, and on April 19th, when the credit is applied to my account, I will purchase next season’s Ikon Pass. Thankfully, Ikon made it super easy and effortless to do this with just the click of a button.

And then summer can begin. Again. Working, running, hiking, hopefully seeing friends and family. With the end goal of Colorado for winter 21/22. After almost two years off skis, will my body even know what to do?

We were living the dream. Now we’re just dreaming of living in Colorado once more.

Dreaming of days like this.

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15 thoughts on “I Will Not Ski a Single Day This Year – And That Hurts

  1. congratulations,

    skiing sucks, i wish i could quit

    it has brought nothing but pain and suffering

  2. THANKS AGAIN COVID! One less car on the highway and one less skier in line.

      1. Youre welcome
        My life is waaaay better than yours btw
        Unless you own a sprinter van…..of course

  3. Have gratitude instead of fomo it is a far superior mental state to attain.
    Be grateful for all the times you have gotten to ski and gratitude and appreciation for having a home, income and food.
    There are many many millions who have never experienced such and are struggling just to have enough food to eat.
    Be grateful and appreciative you are healthy and not sick or have lost a relaive, family member or other loved one to CoV.
    Crikey people its easy if you have a clue.
    Meditate on the bigger things in life and practice gratitude every moment of everyday for this amazing gift called life.
    And may I suggest having a little cheese with that whine?
    Laugh too as humor is the best medicine indeed.
    Peace out.

    1. Anon anon and Qanon peeps only make idiotic comments as such to Gurus
      Figures as they are totally clueless in their insta validate me phoney worlds
      Thanks Guru spot on.

  4. You are not alone. I deferred my max IKON this season after having surgery almost 2 months ago. I could have skied but with only a month and half left I decided to push it out. Just telemarking, road, mountain and fat biking, hiking and snowshoeing with a day or two skiing using some passes I can get from friends.

  5. I feel you man, I know exactly what you mean. I got to go but I had a few really good days ruined by my COVID mask INSTANTLY forming fog and frost inside my goggles…I literally put up with this for days, trying to do the right thing as far as COVID is concerned until I said “screw this” and went to REI for a neck gaiter, which I would only put up over my nose in the lift line. Then Utah got a monster storm that closed down the canyon roads for 3 days…and it would be another day or 2 after that until Alta would open everything up, and when I finally got after it it seemed that everybody else had got to it first. Then I was in Utah an entire other week without another drop of snow. So I was eager, I was desperate, and in the end it didn’t feel like I really experienced what I went there for. And because of COVID, and me being honest, it has been really hard to get into Vermont to get on skis before my big Utah trip…and now to close the season out. So I had about 9 “mixed bag” days in Utah and that will be the extent of my season. I still feel robbed but compared to others I know I shouldn’t complain. I hope I have many more powder days especially in the future.

  6. I thought this was gonna be about injury. Globe trotting Brits are harder to feel sorry for than you realize lol.

  7. A life of true Ski bumming is far far better than the so called acceptable lifestyle of college degree, debt, job, wife, kids etc.
    Unless of course you have inherited wealth and can’t be a true ‘trust-a-farian like others I know.
    My advice for slight therapy to help with you missing just being on top of a mountain aka top of the world; turn off the dang fake phoney 2 dimensional device and go out side and play, life is 3 dimensional not 2 dimensional like these devices that have hijacked many peoples lives.
    We have a thing in our brains called endorphic opiods and all the twitter, tik tok, instagram, news feeds, zuckbook and notifications are designed to react with such.
    Tuen it off!! It is very unnatural with our ancient hunter, gatherer, warrior dna.
    Dig a ditch, plant some veggies, do some physical work as well other than typing on a fake keyboard.
    Play some tennis, ride a bike, roller blade n such there are many things that will trigger endorphins other than this crap called technology.
    Trust me it will help.
    Hope you find some.

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