Love it or loathe it: Skiing
One of the things that makes the House Party Consumer blog so special is our unique, and often, differing opinions. We've tackled Candy Corn and New Year's Eve and now our contributors go head to head, or toe to toe, on their love or loathe of skiing.
Melody - Love
My love of skiing began in high school, when I joined the ski club along with a few of my good friends. It was exciting hopping on the bus to drive just a few hours away to spend the day getting a good workout on the slopes, learning and improving, and especially warming up by the fire afterwards in the lodge with friends and hot chocolate! It's a great way to stay active and get out of hibernation during the winter months. Yes, it can be expensive, but we got a group rate (and there are plenty of ski groups out there today, check out meetup.com). Plus, I bought used equipment to avoid expensive rentals. Little did I know the skis I bought were meant for a 6 foot tall man! Now, I usually try to go skiing at least once a year, and while I no longer own my own equipment due to apartment living, I've found it's more wallet-friendly to rent from a ski shop on the way rather than at the mountain's rental facilities. And there are often deals for lift tickets as well. I skied in April in Killington, VT last year for my birthday and it was amazing - not too cold, powdery snow and not crowded. What's not to love?
Danielle - Loathe
Ugh, skiing. Who wants to take a vacation in the COLD weather? This makes no sense to me. I'm surrounded by cold 4 months of the year (if not more) in the Northeast. If I want to get away from it all, I'm not going to expose myself to the elements and possibly come home with a broken appendage. And while I can totally get down with post skiing activities like the fire pit, warm cocktails and the hot tub, if I want to escape there needs to be sand, surf and drinks with umbrellas. Plus that is one expensive hobby! Rentals and lift tickets can easily bankrupt a family of four and the weight of those boots as you trudge around, while a great workout, is just exhausting. I'll take a jet ski or even water skiing over snow skiing any day.
Brian - Love
Love, love and love. Let me elaborate a bit though... While I started off skiing in California and Colorado as a child, I ultimately ended up preferring snowboarding. However, for the sake of this "Love it or Loathe it" if you'll permit, I'm going to lump the two together. (One big plank or two thin ones, they require similar principles and produce a nearly identical affect on one's heart.) As I grow older, I can certainly recognize the validity of Danielle's points about temperature and finances; however, these need not be elements that make or break a trip to the slopes. There are few other activities that so seamlessly blend a person with nature, test their physical skills and mental fortitude and allow a person to truly reflect on themselves...all at once. It was an activity that I relished growing up and found an excellent way to learn life lessons: getting up when you take a fall (whether physical or emotional), goal-setting (and achieving) and true appreciation of the natural world around us. Whether you're riding the back bowls of Vail, CO or "dropping-in" on something that resembles a mere molehill on the plains of the midwest, skiers and snowboarders are drawn to any opportunity to carve.
It can be beautiful, peaceful and solitude-filled - an escape from anywhere and everywhere. And there are PLENTY of ways that you can enjoy skiing while remaining financially frugal thanks to second-hand, off-season or discontinued item sales of equipment and travel aggregators as well as small, boutique ski areas that continue to emerge. So, go on - lay down some fresh tracks. You'll thank yourself!
Do you love or loathe skiing? We'd love to hear all about it!