SOMETIMES YOU JUST HAVE TO WONDER

Hello Everyone –

This week’s thoughts pertain to a minority of the skiers, snowboarders and snowtubers that visit the winter resorts in the southeast and Mid-Atlantic and if what I say offends you maybe you should just step back and look at yourself in the mirror. After two-decades associated with the ski industry, I have come to realize that there are a number of items that visitors for some unknown reason just don’t consider when they are away from home.

During a recent visit to a resort in the region I was reminded that some folks just don’t realize where they are and how the environment is different from their everyday lives back home. For instance, on many occasions the cloud cover at the resorts is very thick, allowing one only be able to see their hand if they put it square in front of their face. But for some reason, some visitors act like it is a perfectly clear day or night and drive without their lights on or dress in the darkest colors imaginable. These same folks then complain when their vehicle or, worse yet, they are also struck for them not thinking the situation through.

Another example of someone just not considering all of the elements when making a decision at a resort would include walking in the middle of a parking lot that is covered with snow and ice and thinking the approaching vehicle can still stop on a dime when they step out into the path of the vehicle. Then the walkers get upset when the drivers of the vehicles almost hit them.

Here’s another one and we have all seen this one. A couple of friends decide skiing or snowboarding would be something fun to do and head to a resort for their first tracks. These are the same college-educated rocket scientists that took years of study to figure out how to make things go from point A to point B. But when it comes to defying gravity on one or two objects strapped to one’s feet, who needs any schooling? Just strap them on and point ’em downhill, just how tough can it be? These same so-called geniuses get extremely upset when Patrol makes it clear to them that a lesson would be in order, or the loss of a lift ticket would be in order.

The moral to this story (column) is unfortunately a large number of visitors to winter resorts think there is no difference between life in the city and fun on top of a mountain. When common sense goes out the window, so does a lot of people’s fun. It’s always recommended to call ahead for a conditions report in order to enjoy the conditions.

That’s it for this week; more to come as the season continues. Just be patient as whether it be cold or whether it be hot, we’ll weather the weather, whatever the weather will be. Think about it!

Joe Stevens, a member of the southeast ski industry since 1990 is a regular columnist for skisoutheast.com and serves as the Communications Director for the West Virginia Ski Areas Association.