On Saturday morning Hawthorn and I went backcountry skiing and we parked where the snow plow stops his route on Basch road. I wanted this to go perfectly for Hawthorn so I took him to a steep, long forgotten cow pasture where the trees are slowly taking over. It’s gorgeous. It’s wind protected. And it has four inches of fresh powder.
Hawthorn is new to these delicate old style turns and together, we carve S’s in the fresh powder. I give him space and watch him improve. I see him looking around and taking this picturesque valley in. I head to some tough runs and he follows and knocks them out. I can’t be any happier.
As we are climbing a hill, my 15-year-old says, “Dad,I feel the ski industry over emphasizes ski lifts, race gates and terrain parks. This is all we need to really enjoy skiing. It’s like less is more.” He’s feeding my soul even more than this spot of wilderness is.
He follows me down a final run. A really tough run. As I brush through some thick red pines, it opens up. I yell in celebration for the perfect turns ahead. Not only for the few turns here but for the decades ahead with my new backcountry buddy.