Monday, March 7, 2016

making the best of it

We weren't expecting much when we headed up to Alta Saturday morning.  There hadn't been any new snow for ages and the day was overcast, which meant that the springlike conditions and freeze/thaw cycle wouldn't soften up very quickly.  Still, we were determined to ski at least until lunch - how else could we justify getting fries at Alf's?  The first couple of runs, off Collins, were an inauspicious start, with even the groomers being crusty in spots.  H, on his tele skis, was unimpressed with the conditions, and the light was very flat too.  When we shifted over to Sugarloaf it was a little brighter and the snow was a little softer.  There seemed to be a lot more skiers there too and after two runs of dodging people, I couldn't stand it any longer, heading off to Supreme with the plan to meet H at Alf's at 11:45.  

The corral at Supreme was filling up quickly but the singles line was practically empty, so I hopped right on a chair.  At the top of the lift, the view to the west was ominous, with dark skies looming behind Superior.  I didn't dare try a run through Supreme, figuring that it needed more time to warm up and soften, so I did a run down Rock N' Roll.  As I moved up through the singles line, I saw H pull up outside the corral.  He waved me out of line and when I got over to him, he reported that his binding was broken:  he's been hit from behind by a thirteen or fourteen-year-old kid who had knocked him down and broken his binding.  H exercised good self-control and didn't cuss out the kid (or the kid's father, who skied up shortly thereafter), but he did point out that the downhill skier (H) had the right of way.  Neither the kid nor the kid's father said anything - didn't apologize for hitting H, or breaking his equipment, NOTHING - just stood there for a bit and then skied away.  [Who does that?  Who doesn't even say anything? What is wrong with people?]  Luckily, H wasn't hurt but the damage to his binding meant our ski day was over.  He valiantly volunteered to hang out in the lodge while I skied longer, but I didn't feel the conditions were good enough to warrant that.  So, at 10:30 a.m., we skied out and back to the truck.

After stopping at the house to clean up, we drove up to SLC to the Wasatch Touring Company, a funky ski/bike/paddle shop downtown (702 East 100 South).  H had been concerned that the damage to the binding might have affected the ski itself but the man at the repair counter (one of the shop owners/founders) seemed confident that they could fix it.  We don't go downtown very often - since I work in SLC, we're not that eager to do the drive on the weekends - but figured we should make the best of it since we were there, and went to the Beer Bar (161 East 200 South) for lunch.  There was hardly anyone around when we got there a little after noon, so we were able to eat our sausages (a Louisiana Hot with carmelized onions and sweet peppers for me and a linguica with sauerkraut and hot peppers for H) and drink our beers (Epic Session IPA and Lagunitas IPA) while watching British Premier League soccer, without jostling for table space.  It wasn't the way we had envisioned our Saturday going but we salvaged it as best we could - and determined that Sunday, with the snow-bringing storm moving in, wouldn't be such a bust.

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