Marijuana and Snow

marijuana and snow
Hippy High Hay!

marijuana and snow
It’s not Altitude Sickness it is Hippy High Hay!
A frequent story I am seeing in relation to skiing and snowboarding is the move by the states of Colorado and Washington to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. With both states being leading ski and snowboarding destination states one is bound to notice a buzz about marijuana and its impact on the snow sports industry.

Marijuana and Snow — Legal Does not Mean Open

The law in Colorado does not permit public consumption of marijuana, it allows for the purchase and recreational use in private. So if you think you are going to go to Colorado and light up on the lift, you probably should rethink that plan. This is a good thing because some people do not want to see or smell it. Some do not want their children or charges exposed to it either so please be considerate.

Also, quite a bit of the articles I have read note that much ski territory is actually on federal government lands meaning federal laws apply and I suppose it is all up to the particular US Forest Service ranger who busts you if he will hassle your or let you be.

Marijuana and Snow — The Impact Washes Out

I do not believe this will have much impact on state of the tourism industry in either state. I believe those who will be repulsed and take their snow vacations elsewhere will balance out those who decide to head to Washington or Colorado for the easy access to marijuana and snow.

Marijuana and Snow — My Concerns

My main concerns is that those who use hippy hay while skiing or snowboarding do so responsibly and understand they are ambassadors. If they act irresponsibly and injure folks they will give their movement a black eye. I was at a hippy hay protest years and years ago (watching not participating) and one woman was uselessly trying to get a “legalize it” chant going. The police arrested a person on the edge of the crowd and suddenly and spontaneously the crowd started chanting BS (though they used the fully formed phrase), not a good public image they were conveying.

I really do not expect to hear of an uptick of injuries or accidents on the slopes due to the use of hippy hay while skiing or snowboarding. We all have read stories about smokeshacks at many of the major resorts, some are quite modest and some are nearly hostels.

Another concern is addiction, any phsyco-active substance has the potential for addiction and the road to that path is a bit easier.

Use it responsibly and don’t get too zoned on the slopes.

Marijuana and Snow — Viva Liberty!

That said, this is a victory for liberty. Despite all of the king’s soldiers and all of the king’s men working to eliminate drugs from society it is just not happening now is it? The laws being made to fight drugs are an affront to liberty (even if the drugs themselves remain illegal) and those laws adversely affect everyone of us regardless of our use or non-use of hippy-hay.

If you want to avoid dope on the slope there is no shortage of states that still prohibit marijuana use, simply go there instead and if you want to go to see dope on the slope you know where to go.

There is still hope for our nation not becoming a one-size-fits-all flavorless porridge of states.

Marijuana and Snow — Your Opinion?

Do you believe this will have any affect on the snow industry? How about on our society?

Good Stuff!


  1. This is a well-reasoned look at the issue. I’m all in favor of decriminalization and perhaps even legalization. The important question is whether a skier/rider is impaired on the slopes. That’s point #1 of the responsibility code: Always be in control.

  2. The old saying is that one oh-sugar moment ruins 1000 adda-boys and the same here. Shortly after the laws kicked in a spoof website (like the onion) ran a story about all sorts of ODs in Colorado and Washington and many folks were taking the stories for real, a lot of folks want to believe the worst about all of this.

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