Solitude locals definitely know how to have a good time come rain or shine and today’s closing day brought out the best (and weirdest) that Utah has to offer. Who would miss the closing of our sweet little slice of heaven? Not me.
Although the skies were sending down torrents of rain and church was still happening with or without us, we piled in the car and headed up the rain stricken canyon. Was I being punished for wearing ski clothes instead of a dress? I don’t know, but, what I do know is that Big Cottonwood Canyon seemed eerily similar to my childhood ski days driving up into the Cascades in Washington State. Where yesterday the sun cast it’s warmth over the craggy peaks, today, grey mists hugged the landscape like a quiet blanket drifting softly through the forests. The windshield wipers worked furiously to clear the wet drops from our view as I wondered if we should just turn around and forget about it. The thought lasted only a moment. What was I thinking? It was the LAST day for goodness sakes. I would be six months older the next time I slid off Summit Lift. Turn around? No way!
Last day at any ski resort is always a great time and Solitude would be no exception. I just needed to suck it up and hope that our ski clothes were truly waterproof.
We pulled into the Moonbeam parking lot as the rain really began to pick up but I wasn’t to be disappointed. Closing day had still lured the die hards and the celebrations were already underway. Although ponchos, tents and umbrellas were the order of the morning, skiers, borders and those just up for the party were already kicking back, bumping the tunes and sporting some seriously great outfits!
We could barely see through our goggles as we sat down on the dripping lift. We huddled together as water found its way down beneath our jackets and slid down our necks and backs. Spring is such a temperamental thing. Why just last weekend we were skiing in drifts of fluffy snow and one week later, here we are taking showers on the lifts and sloshing around slurpy like ski trails, praying to the man upstairs to not let a knee be blown or worse. You all know what I am talking about. …ski, ski, ski, stop, lurch…what the???
But you know what? We still had a great time! It wasn’t cold, so the rain was manageable. We made a few runs, enjoyed the fantastic people watching and took in the festivities…well, as much as some non-costumed clad, church skipping folks could. And guess what? The sun broke her way through the clouds, just in time for all of Solitude’s truest fans who were huddled in the parking lot to really let loose for the last few hours of the 2010/2011 season!
This year was a memorable one and with snow totals at thirty year highs, Solitude was able to share her deepest thanks to all of us who made her our playground throughout the season. She was a gracious host and blessed us each day with her thrilling terrain and copious amounts of snow. We are all grateful for the hard work and dedication of her employees and to all those who made it possible for us to shred her slopes over this amazingly epic winter!
Until the slopes melt and the bike trails open…Hasta la vista, baby!
A FEW OF SOLITUDE’S AWE INSPIRING LOCALS and my little guys…of course…