TGR Stoke the Fire

Ski movie tours are a long-standing tradition, going all the way back, almost to the very beginning of downhill skiing in the United States. Names like Miller and Barrymore pioneered the art form in the days when ski movies were narrated by a guy standing at the back of the theater, often the same guy who edited the film with tape and a pair of scissors. For many people, attending the annual ski movie premiere in person still marks the unofficial start of the ski season.

East 32nd St in NYC

I’ve been to a few tour stops but this year I wanted to change things up. I’d never been to a Teton Gravity Research movie so that was my first stop when researching options. I’ve been a fan of their movies for awhile but always just ordered the DVDs (when that was a thing) or streamed them.

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Hickory or Not?

There’s a significant group of skiers out there who’ve had a great day at Hickory. Certainly enough to fill up the ski center after a storm. When you consider the total number of ski days Hickory has operated over the last 10 years, that’s really kind of amazing.

Hickory fire pit

Personally I’ve had six days at Hickory, five of them in winter, all were unforgettable. So yea, people like me, we’re out there.

Many of us wish we had another shot at it. I know I do. If I had known my last Hickory ski day was going to be my last Hickory ski day, by golly, I would have skied harder. Many also understand why Hickory has been closed the last few years.

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The Beast Returns to Early Season 2021

I did without a lot of things last season. Ski buddies. Random chairlift conversations. Booting up in the lodge. Skiing out West. And, until my last day, Vermont.

Killington Peak Lodge

When the 2020-21 ski season wrapped, with an improbable bomb of an April snowstorm at Mount Snow, I thought that would be the end of Covid-era skiing, of masks and staggered lift-loading and travel restrictions and ski-area reservations. And while I had come to like booting up in my minivan, music blasting and heat cranking, I was done with the rest of it.

But as summer wore on and Covid surged once more, I didn’t know if skiing would or should be done with it. Perhaps this was a thing and we would just have to learn to live with it.

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