Then, sometime between Shane McConkey’s death and now, skiing got really, really, really boring. Look around the lodge now. Where are the partiers? Where are the chicks in stretch pants? Where are the zany antics? Where are the mustaches? All I see now are Transpacks and Ski Totes, corporate ownership of big mountains, contractors doing food service, and lame people doing lame things on lame mountains with lame rules. Did you know that there’s a state law in Vermont that says you can’t drink your own beer on a deck outside of a ski area bar (or the bar loses its license)? WTF? The state where Fred Pabst founded multiple mountains (including Bromley) can’t tolerate a cooler full of PBR on a warm spring day? If the people from 80’s ski movies were subject to these rules, the movies would have been 15 minutes long.
Yes, the Fred Pabst referred to is Fred Pabst Jr. the son of the man who turned a small Milwaukee Brewery into Pabst Brewing.
Anyway, is skiing lame?
A few things. I am not familiar with the ski scene in Matt’s hangouts, but I don’t believe any of the things noted in the post really apply to the scene here in Wisconsin and the UP of Michigan. I sit out on the porch of any resort and can bring my brew, and if I am in Wisconsin I can bring my own supply. Nothing quite as nice as having a beer in the sunshine on the deck on a nice March day.
However, there is talk of ski resorts not being cool because of their usual corporate ownership and the atmosphere imparted. To be sure, a lot of people like the certainty of standard corporate product. They are plunking down lots of cash to spend a week at a destination ski resort and want to be sure of at least an average experience. Most people want groomed runs and will pay for that. It is not like all resorts groom 100% all the time, in fact, today’s grooming report from Beaver Creak shows extensive, but far from 100% grooming coverage. Around about this area one can always go to Whitecap if they want ungroomed snow.
In the end the value of my ski experience is determined by the people I am with and by how well I am skiing regardless of the conditions. I don’t value my skiing experience by the amount of beer consumed, by the conditions, or the the fact my post-skiing munchies were standard cafeteria fries (actaully they are good, but they are still standard product.).