A quick weekend ski trip to Colorado. Marc just started his new job
and escaped for a weekend on the slopes before getting down to work.

Day 1: Vail
Looking at Marc and the mountains from Vail's front side.

From the top of the Orient Express lift we hiked up along the ridge
for some fresh powder. I was a bit too excited by my first powder
of the season.
(AVI, MPEG movie)

We had to take 6 lifts, but we got some fresh tracks in the Outer
Mongolia bowl.

Marc drawing a line in the fresh stuff.
(AVI, MPEG movie)

Following Marc's trail.

Following in Marc's tracks.
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Following Marc.
(AVI, MPEG movie)

Another hike from the top of Orient Express. Marc carves some lines
in the fresh stuff.
(AVI, MPEG movie)

From the top of the T-bar we hiked up to the ridge dividing Vail's front
side and back bowls. We followed a couple of others over the ridge onto
the front side and through the trees and fresh powder. This was the best
snow we found all day. After heading down a bit, though, we encountered
a small drop of maybe 6 feet. Marc pauses before descending.

Day 2: Aspen
After a great day at Vail, we had high hopes for Aspen. We headed to the
top of Aspen Highlands, but it was pretty much all hard and icy. The weather
was cold, windy, foggy, and a bit snowy. Nothing like the previous day.
Marc comes down a nice steep stretch near the top.

True to its name, there were aspen trees.

Around 11am they opened up the Highland Bowl, a huge bowl just above the top
of the regular lift-serviced slopes. Here, we're waiting for the snowcat to
take us up to the start of the bowl. Others are hiking, only to later regret
not waiting for the free ride.

After dismounting the snowcat the hiking begins.

Looking back down along the ridge.

Marc after the first main climb. From here there are two more to the summit.

At the summmit, cold, windy, and poor visibility. I hear it's an incredible
view when it's clear.

Marc and I enjoying the view. We came down the far side of the bowl and
experienced some nice fresh powder. Nothing like Vail the day before, but
the bowl was a nice escape from the hard-pack of the trails.

Day 3: Pike's Peak
Marc left monday for work, and I headed to Colorado Springs for my meeting.
That afternoon I took a quick drive up to the summit of Pike's Peak. The
car claimed it was 5 degrees at the summit. With the wind I didn't have
much patience for the nice view.

A couple shots on the drive down, near the summit.

At around 11,500 ft I pulled over, changed into my snowboarding clothes,
grabbed my board, and started hiking. In general the mountain had light
snow coverage, but I saw a chute that looked promising. After a couple
hundred feet I stopped here, strapped on my board, and headed back down.

It was a short run, and the snow wasn't great, but it was worth the effort.

The "Eagle's Nest" or something like that, just below where I started my hike.

After stopping for some groceries, it was time to cook up a tasty dinner.

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