It’s that time of the year, when weekends are 50% skiing, 50% recovering from skiing. Most Friday evenings in our house are a discussion on where we should go, what time we should go and how to avoid shitty I-70 traffic (we never do). Yesterday we made the call to go to one of our favorite semi-local mountains, Winter Park Resort. Winter Park and Mary Jane have incredible terrain and are only about 1.5 hours from Boulder (without traffic). It’s also free of the big resort bullshit like paying for parking and then having to take a shuttle to the lift. I’m all about ski in, ski out, no bullshit mountains. If I wanted to go to Disney World, I’d be in Florida (read hell).
Wyatt and I are not the type to wake up at 5:00 AM to get the first chair up the “freshies,” the proverbial “pow-pow.” So we roll up there at around 10:45 AM. No matter what, I always leave myself about an hour before we head out to pack my “essential” white girl shit.
1. Pre-Ski & Après-Ski Tea
Over the past couple of months, I stopped drinking coffee daily. I stopped out of necessity when I got the flu, but then I just wanted to see how gnarly my withdraw headaches would get before I wanted to throw myself off a cliff. Shockingly, I quit my daily morning cup cold-turkey without having to start WWIII at 2:00 PM while blowing massive doses of Advil to get me through the day.
Now, I’m all about that tea. Conveniently, we live across the street from the Celestial Seasonings Factory which is glorious for my new-found tea obsession, but also because it permeates the air with a combination of honey, chamomile and pumpkin-spice smells. I swear, it’s the closest thing to heaven on earth. As an aside, they do free tours, tea tastings and the tea boxes are $2.00 each. But I digress.
My go to for pre-ski and apre-ski tea is a no brainer. Celestial Seasonings’ Honey Chamomile tea is the jam. Here’s how to do it:
- Two tea bags each into my insulated Kleen Kanteen water bottle and two tea bags in my insulated Hydro Flask
- Few drips of organic honey (how else can you really measure honey)
- 1 tablespoon of Bulletproof XCT Oil
- 1 teaspoon Charlotte’s Web CBD (when available)
- Typically, I use my Kleen Kanteen for my après-ski tea since its better insulated.
I promise that after crushing the gnar in arctic temperatures, and schlepping around like the Michelin Man in all of your ski gear, drinking a piping hot, sweet, delicious cup of tea will make your day. (Make one for your partner too or I guarantee they will drink yours).2
2. Après-Ski Snacks
I’m a huge fan of eating a hearty breakfast before skiing. Typically, we make scrambled eggs, black beans, avocado and toast, which always think will hold us until dinner. But, much to my dismay, every damn time – it doesn’t. I always wrap up the last few runs of the day thinking about all of the delicious food stuff and drink stuff I want to consume immediately. But, as previously mentioned there is always the likelihood that you along with all of the other white people in the state of Colorado will be sitting together on I-70 while you dream of the burgers that await you. If you get hangry like I do, you’ll need to bring some après-ski snacks to hold you over until burger time. I always pack:
- Whole Foods 365 brand resealable bag of roasted, unsalted cashews – delicious fatty treats
- Whole Foods freshly ground almond butter and raspberry jelly sandwich – sweet, salty, protein-rich fatty meal treat
- Organic baby carrots – just to balance it all out
3. Beanie & Sunglasses
No matter how cute you want to look after getting off of a day on the slopes, I bet you will have wicked helmet hair, goggle lines and wind burn. Just embrace it, no one looks cute after skiing. BUT, that’s why the gods made beanies – to keep your head warm and cover up your nasty, dready, post-ski hair. This is especially crucial if you plan on being in public after you take your helmet off. It is customary for Colorado white people to want to “grab a beer” or a “bite” after skiing, so you’ll want to be prepared for it. My favorite beanies are from LL Bean (I know. So white).
For all the same reasons and because no matter what you think, snow is bright as fuck – bring your sunglasses. There will be no point in time while you’re in the mountains that your eyes will want to be uncovered. If they are, it will feel like they are burning out of your head – plus, it’s crows-feet central. My go-to for sunglasses is Zeal Optics in Boulder. They’re local and always willing to fix or replace the sunnies that “accidentally broke” (read, you sat on them).
4. Lucid Mood Vape Pen
As a cannabis industry professional, I like to think I know a thing or two about what, when and how to consume cannabis. For skiing or other (white person) outdoor activities, get yourself an “Relax” Lucid Mood pen. They’re about $30 depending on the dispensary you get them in, but I would recommend The Giving Tree in Denver. What’s great about these pens is that they’re super portable, last a long time, taste delicious and offer a functional, relaxed, happy high. Plus, you can just pull them out and puff on the chair lift instead of having to pack a messy bowl or even worse, light a joint. Warning, the “Relax” flavor tastes like your vaping lavender essential oil, so if that’s not your jam, I’d suggest trying the “Chill” or “Energy” kind5. Chapstick, Hand Cream, Packable Water Bottle
5. Chapstick, Hand Cream, Packable Water Bottle
A day in Colorado without chapstick is a day that you might not survive. I say this kind of jokingly, but mostly serious. YOU NEED CHAPSTICK WHEN YOU SKI. My favorite is from Whole Foods (shocker) called Soothing Touch Vanilla Rose Lip Balm. Even better, it’s “85% organic” (for real, what’s the point of that claim?) Your ski coat will have a thousand secret pockets, make sure this is in at least one of them.
Similarly, your cuticles and hands will dry out like a prune after being washed, exposed and cold as fuck all day. I’m loving Trader Joe‘s Ultra Moisturizing Hand Cream and have a tube in my purse, my office, next to my bed side and right here in front of my face. It’s everywhere.
Lastly, one of my favorite additions to my ski stuff repertoire has been a HydraPak packable water bottle. Especially if you plan to do some high skiing, you’re going to get cotton mouth and want to stab a baby for some water. This thing is small enough that I can fit it in my jacket pocket, but big enough to last me a full day of skiing. As a bonus, it also is fun to play with and feels like a fake boob when full.
After skiing at Winter Park/Mary Jane, you MUST stop at The Dairy King in Empire on the way home (you’re going to sit in traffic anyway) and get a large sweet potato fry, bison burger, and a cup of vanilla soft serve. Be aware, they are cash only, but everything is really cheap. This place is a Rocky Mountain American classic and the experience will be nothing less.