Taos to Boulder

Happy New Year! We’re in Boulder, getting ready to head to Frisco today for our last week in the West. Our last few days in Taos were sunny, warmish, and beautiful. On Christmas Eve, we met up with some friends who live in Maryland to ski with them at Taos. Gilbert had a bone to pick, and he got his! Everyone had fun amidst the chaos, and we had kind of a pick up dinner.

In the night, Santa brought Airpods for Seamus and Gilbert, a Lego and soccer ball for Porter, and a scooter for Harlan. He also brought me a nasty 36 hour stomach bug. I spent Christmas Day sick and sleeping, while everyone else (except Harlan, who claimed to have a headache) went off skiing. They wrapped up with still some daylight left, so Patrick took all the kids to a park to play with the soccer ball and scooter. I felt pretty awful all day, but by the next day, when we needed to check out and drive to Colorado, I was feeling better.

We had an absolutely beautiful drive through northern New Mexico and southern Colorado. Around Denver, we stopped at Black Shirt Brewery for pizza and beer. The service was very slow, as they got slammed with one person in the kitchen, one person on the floor, and a bartender covering the whole place. The food was great (jalapeño, pineapple, and cream cheese on a pizza, anyone?), so we happily waited. The boys wanted the cobbler, and I was like, “Well, it’s probably already made up in the back, and won’t take long.” That was not the case. Instead, they got a fresh, home-made cherry cobbler with maraschino cherries from the bar! That right there was worth the entertainment. We were there a long time.

We got to our hotel and checked in, and Porter and Harlan wanted to swim, so I took them to the pool for more than an hour. It was fun to watch them jumping and backstroking and generally blowing off some steam. The next day was nearly 60 degrees and so windy! We drove up the mountain to ski and had a great morning, but by 1:00, they had the lifts closed for wind, so we headed back down and the kids played soccer at the park, and I went to Costco for meal supplies. We skiied again on Wednesday at Eldora, and Harlan loved the terrain park, so we spent a lot of time there. Wednesday evening it was supposed to snow 2 inches, so we were excited to see a little dusting.

On Thursday, we woke up, and there was nearly a foot of snow on the ground! We ate, got dressed in our ski gear, and put some chains on the car to get out of the parking lot. We dithered about heading up the mountain on our own or waiting in town for the shuttle, but we ended up having Gilbert sit up front in the van, and I sat in the way back so as to not feel anxious with the snow. Harlan and Porter sat with me, chatting all the way up. And truly, the snow was beautiful, coating all the trees and rocks and rendering the canyon an entirely different place that it had been the day before. We made it! It was a fun powdery day, but as Seamus noted, the wind moved the powder off the section of mountain he’d wanted so ski, so it was icy over there. An interesting contrast. We got in some fun powder runs in some more sheltered places.

Friday, we didn’t ski. Instead, we ran errands, got Harlan and Gilbert haircuts, swam, played some games, and relaxed a bit. Harlan wanted a mullet, like Gilbert has, so he got one. It really helps keep his ski and swim goggles out of his hair! Looks pretty funny though!

Saturday, it snowed again, and we had our hearts set on skiing A Basin with our friends. So we got up early, and drove the 1.5 hour drive that turned into a 3 hour drive to the mountain. It was slow-going! At one point, in the last three miles of the drive, we stopped to put on chains, and it was a good choice, because chains are always better than slipping off a mountain or getting stuck in a parking lot. We’ve skiied A Basin three times, and every time it snows on us! We love the powder days there. Seamus and Gilbert skiied the wall most of the day, which was full of blacks and double blacks, but they were excited because the advanced terrain in most of the places we’ve skied so far hasn’t been open. Harlan loves the tree runs (glades), so he and I skied those until I hit something weird and decided I’d wait for him outside the trees! Porter and Patrick took some sweet runs off the top–A Basin has a new 6 person express lift to the top–and they have a ton of above tree line blues to ski. I headed up there at the end of the day with Patrick, and it was just gorgeous. We enjoyed meeting up with our friends, even if it was kind of a mess getting there, because there’s nothing like meeting on the mountain to mix it up, catch up, and enjoy the day!

We had an easier drive back to the hotel, played some games, watched TV, had dinner, swam, watched the ball drop, and went to bed. Today, we pick up grandparents from the airport, hang out with our friends and Obi (a dog), and get settled in our spot in Frisco. The kids are very excited to ski Copper this week, as they will all tell you it’s their favorite mountain. Happy New Year!

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