Mar 22, 2009

Ski Day with Skyler

I took Friday off and we headed up to Winter Park, home of the National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD) to ski with Skyler. He didn't get to go last year because of his spine surgery, and we are late in getting up this year due to, well, life getting in the way! It was a fun day, warm but overcast. I was struck by how little snow there was there. We have been hearing reports that while we are way behind in precipitation around here, the snowpack was still adequate. No way! There just isn't a whole lot of snow in the high country which spells water rationing this year.

But back to skiing. Skyler has been going up there once or twice a year since he was a little guy, skiing in their sit-sky program. It is almost all volunteers, and everyone is usually great. This time, we were paired up with one of the few full time NSCD employees, Rick, who runs and trains people in the sit ski program. His trainee was a lovely girl named Sarah, who Skyler liked a lot.

Rick is awesome, he has been doing this a long time, and handles the sit ski great. He is also strong like bull, and could take Skyler down some more challenging terrain and let him go fast. Skyler is like his dad, he likes fast!

While we were there spending money, we had to stop in the NSCD store to drop more cash. We got Skyler a new shirt, Kathy a new running shirt, and I got a shirt with my favorite print on it:

You probably can't see it very well, so hear is a closeup:

The lady at the store told us the story behind that dog. It was a wonderful female lab that was great at everything needed to be a guide dog, with one exception. She had this crazy prey drive that they never could break her of. So while she was a superior guide dog, let a squirrel cross in front of her and it was off to the races! So they were going to wash her out of the program, when they found a guy who wasn't totally blind. He could see a bit, and had a condition where he needed help with getting around and retrieving things that were dropped, etc...

So they were paired up, and it worked out wonderfully. That picture is real, that is her waiting for him as he climbed. Pretty cool, huh?

Here are a couple more pictures of us skiing:

Rick and Skyler flying by!

Here is quick video of Skyler skiing:


  1. Looks like fine! I've never been skiing.

  2. He doesn't look like he is having one looks like they are having fun....did I mention skiing scares the bejeezzus out of me.....

  3. You're such a great dad. Everyone should be so lucky.

  4. That is excellent! There is a program similar to that up here.

    By the way, S.D., I love your old-school K2s!

  5. Hey Chris, I was going to mention something about those in the post, but it was already getting too long! The guy I talked about, Rick, has been at Winter Park for years. When he first saw my old boards, he couldn't believe I was still using them. He was laughing his ass off when I told him they had all the camber of a wet noodle left. They are 200's from 1983 I think. I was still working up in Idaho Springs at a ski shop and bought them with my employee discount. Rick told me I just have to try the shaped skis, that they are much easier to carve a turn. But I would miss being able to just turn my old boards downhill and fly!

  6. Anonymous4:34 PM

    That looks like fun. I think I have an old pair of skis from about that era floating around in my mom's garage somewhere. Antiques by now, I'm sure.

  7. Oh, Sky Dad, how fun! :-)

  8. Anonymous5:53 PM

    Honestly, how cool was that? Kudos to you for recording while skiing!

  9. That dog picture is fantastic. It really says it all about the disabled being able to do many things people think they can't.

    A lady that used to work with me is married to a fencing contractor (boards not swords) who is a part-time instructor at the NSCD. He said it is very rewarding.

  10. Anonymous1:45 AM

    I enjoyed skiing with you. I doubt I will do it again. Beautiful.

  11. What an awesome day! Such a great program.

  12. I'm sorry, I saw snow and immediately broke into a fit of uncontrollable screaming. You know, that "if I see one more snowflake, I'll go mad!" thing.


    Seriously, the pix, the tee-shirt and all o' that is seriously cool, but I suppose more for someone who LIKES snow in March, of which I'm pleased that YOU are (and Skyy is, too) but I'm not. Gimmie a hotty-tubb instead!!

  13. Anonymous9:59 AM

    sweet!! it is awesome that there are places like that

    btw ... i hate skiing! lol!!

  14. You are still not making me sad that winter is leaving. Not one bit.

  15. Awesome!

    I went skiing once, in 1983. Probably used skis similar to yours, I'd guess! Rented ones, though. Probably not as good as the ones you bought.

    I am impressed that you can ski and shoot a video at the same time!

  16. You really are a great Dad! And Skyler's so lucky!

    I love the dog pic. That picture really does speak volumes!

  17. Ah yes, I love that photo. That reminds me of a Documentary I need to post.

  18. how terrific is this!! there is nothing like snow to bring the kid in all of us
    and what a great program