Ski Clinics for Chicks

According to The Ski Diva, and really any girl who rips out there, you notice your crew is usually all-male… mine was, at least. I, very much like the author of that post, don’t have many females to ride with. In my 2017 Ski Instructor search, I was one of 3 girls at the initiation session of one location, and I am one of 4 female instructors at the mountain I chose to work at, total. “Growing up” and becoming the “breadwinner” and “homemaker” and “caretaker” all at once has taken a toll, and many a female drop the skis for the role of “woman.” However, organizations like Unicorn Picnic and sister company SheJumps are really trying to push the rad-chick agenda and get girls outside. The movement is growing, and loud. That is why I am SO excited about some of these ski clinics at nearby mid-atlantic mountains below.

Master the Mountain Series, Seven Springs – Learn More
I am totally going to a couple of these, however lift ticket is not included.

  • Breakthrough: Jan 7 $95 / Jan 7-8 $180
  • Bumps & Steeper Terrain: Jan 21 $95 / Jan 21-22 $180
  • Carving / Groomers: Jan 28 $95 / Jan 28-29 $180
  • Bumps / Trees: Feb 4 $95 / Feb 4-5 $180
  • High-End Performance: Feb 11 $95 / Feb 11-12 $180
  • Freestyle: Feb 25 $95 / Feb 25-26 $180

Women’s Days, Whitetail – Sign Up
Been to a Women’s Day, great day on-snow and to meet locals in the area.
Jan 6, Jan 27 & Feb 6, 2017 | 
Clinic & Lift – $115

Burton Women’s Snowboard Camp, Snowshoe – Sign Up
Jan 6-8, 2017 | Camp & Lift – $279

Head Women’s Ski Camp, Snowshoe – Sign Up
Totally on my To-Do list, but I want to go with girl friends!
Jan 27-29, 2017 | Camp & Lift – $279

Your Turn Women’s Clinic, Holiday Valley- Sign Up
Jan 26 – 27, 2017 | Clinic – $290, Lift – $70

Learn With The Ladies, Seven Springs – Sign Up
Feb 4 – 5, 2017 | Clinic – $195, Lift – $131

TELESKIING & XC

Freeheel Festival, Seven Springs – Sign Up
January 28 – 29, 2017 | 2-Day Tele Skill Development – $165

^ Telemark, anyone?! Really, some of these ski and snowboard sessions are for everyone, but who doesn’t love a little girl-power? January is Learn To Ski & Ride month, so let’s get out there! No matter your ability level, there is an on-snow clinic or ski lesson series in the mid-atlantic / east coast for you.

Finding My Parks, Finding Myself

I went from 0 to 5 pretty quickly this year, visiting National Parks for the first time from the east to the west side of the US. Some made me gasp, some made me cry, and all of them helped me learn a little more about myself.

1. Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
The grandest view you ever did see. Met some people who were back for the 6th time, and met others that referred to it as a giant hole in the ground. Also met some elk in the parking lot. This canyon was massive, and despite the giant crowd behind me, as soon as I got to the first overlook, it was so. silent. Beautiful, overwhelming and awesome! Isn’t it one of the seven wonders of the world? It should be. And for someone that likes the mountains so much, no issues with chairlifts and gondolas, I was absolutely shaking as we stood on the edge for a photograph, frozen trying to hike around rocks and couldn’t look at other people daintily hopping through crevices. Maybe it’s because I wasn’t sitting on a chair with a flask full of fireball with soft powder (east coast ice?) beneath me.

Grand Canyon | ChristinaSkis.com Blog

2. Shenandoah National Park, VA
Nearest, so the dearest to my heart. Only a 3 hour drive away, I can get a glimpse of beautiful Shenandoah whenever I fancy, without layovers at an airport. Lots of bear press here, I saw my first one up close here, and yes, I must admit I embarrassingly almost pulled what is called a “bear jam” along Skyline Drive. Sorry!

Shenandoah NP

4. Petrified Forest National Park & Painted Desert, AZ
Definitely the most colorful! Purples and blues you didn’t think existed in nature exist here. Gorgeous dunes and rocks of pink and magenta, and the petrified wood was honestly breathtaking with yellow, red, green quartz. But, I couldn’t help but get the feeling that it was all a joke and these ancient, dinosaur trodden logs were just here because someone put them there. I mean, this used to be a rainforest… I can’t fathom it.

Petrified Forest NP

4. Saguaro National Park, AZ
My least favorite, but beautiful in its own way. It was surprisingly barren, and by they time this was made into a national park, many of the giant saguaros were old, and then either ravaged by fire or snow (can’t remember the sign), probably both, because AZ weather is crazier than you’d think. However, I did still find something about myself there. I felt bad that I thought this way, that I should be grateful to be in one of what our country has deemed National status. But I hated hiking the desert.

Quick AZ Escape | ChristinaSkis.com Blog

5. Rocky Mountain National Park, CO
Now this, this place gives you the feels, hands down. Estes Park, one of the larger mountain towns to stay in near one of the many entrances of the park, had the most astounding views I have ever seen in my life. I literally cried out loud in my rental car as I ascended into town. And the next day, I sat around Dream and Emerald lake for about 3 hours. I was in love. I learned that I actually will altitude sickness, even if I didn’t feel effects in Winter Park 3 years ago. Tip: Don’t drink so much water that you flush your electrolytes and feel worse, get Gatorade in there. And Advil will save you. Anyway, highly recommend and can’t wait to explore again.

rmnp

Unfortunately, that’s all for now. I will probably visit Shenandoah again before the year is up, but I think next year only holds more opportunities. Here’s to 101 years (and many more)!

#FindYourPark

Dreamin’ at 10,000 Feet

I had the opportunity to travel to Denver on business, so what other choice to extend this trip into a solo-tour of some of Colorado’s most recognized places?

Day 1 – Denver – 5,430′
Spent a night in the new, super modern the ART, a hotel. I was too busy swimming in the bed and the shower to take pictures… plus, it was a business trip, I wasn’t supposed to be having fun yet, right?

Day 2 – Denver to Colorado Springs – 6,035′
I was set free during the late afternoon and I pretty much drove straight to The Broadmoor upon arrival to Colorado Springs, pretending I was staying in the elegant, historical mountain resort (not the $68/night motel 5 minutes down the road).

 

This place is phenomenal! Feeling the history here. And the mountains… ?

A photo posted by Christina Skis (@christina_skis) on

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Day 3, Morning – Colorado Springs – 6,035′
Stuck on EST, I rose at 5 am (if only I could do that for work) and decided to see Garden of the Gods at sunrise. Please do this. Morning must-see.

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

Excited to see some waterfalls, I visited Helen Hunt falls and hiked the trail to take a peak at another on Silver Cascade Trails.

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

9:00 am, opening time, I grabbed a shuttle to see Seven Falls, owned by The Broadmoor. A civilized little walk brings you to a giant sight to behold, and 224 steps up a cliff to get close and personal. I continued on the trail at the top to see Midnight Falls. Let me warn you, this has a decent amount of crowd at opening time. Go early if you want to see. Plus, you can eat at the Golden Bee afterwards!

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

Day 3, Afternoon – Colorado Springs to Estes Park – 7,522′
Denver traffic is a nightmare, and I was a bit nervous to go the Peak to Peak Byway through the mountains via Nederland, CO. So, I went the opposite way and I ran into the cute Castlewood Canyon State Park – I wish I had time to stay longer!

Colorado State Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

Day 4 – Rocky Mountain National Park – 9,450-10,110′
My final day I went all out. I booked a guided hike from Kirk’s Mountain Adventures, and set out at 7:00 am. We hit one of the most popular areas in the park, which also serves as a great first-day hike for visitors to RMNP.

Shortly from the Bear Lake Trailhead (parking fills early!) you will run into Nymph Lake.

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

Dream Lake is not too far after, and one of the most beautiful areas on this trail.

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

After hiking just 1.8 miles up, we hit Emerald Lake at 10,110′ feet. And I was out of breath.

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

My guide was so passionate about fly fishing, and I am grateful he brought his gear. We hiked down near the stream looking for spots to fish (which I pretty much have never done), but it was a welcome break and they were pretty and wild!

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

After we were done, I did some shopping in downtown Estes Park, more like a boardwalk of t-shirts and nicknacks. Then it was time to see some wildlife with Wildside 4×4 Tours. And we lucked out beyond what I even thought I was going to see. Bear AND two bull moose! I mean, that’s once in a lifetime!

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog

I definitely would say, go with family and friends so you can share the magic of Estes Park and all of Colorado together – it’s not to be kept to yourself. I can’t wait to go back.

Rocky Mountain National Park - ChristinaSkis.com Blog