Monday, November 15, 2010

Back on Board in Colorado

With so much anticipation and build-up for this trip, the last thing I expected was to get sick the day before I left. I had been planning this trip to Colorado for weeks, and I wasn't about to give in to a little cold... little did I know this cold had a lot more in store for me.
Sunday November 7th. 6:30am. Ouch. A sleepless night before, I hopped in my new Toyota Highlander (Thanks to my wonderful stepdad Rick Knoop) and hit I-80. Groggy, achy, tired and oxygen deprived, I had to pull over in Wyoming to take a little nap. Upon waking, the winds gusting at the side of my vehicle were vigorous. Cars were being blown all over the road, and that inspired me to wake right up. Another four hours in and I arrived safely at my incredible team manager's home in Fort Collins. Suzanne has been doing so well with Akinz Boardwear, I was stoked to get to see where she does her work, and spend some quality time riding, and goofing around with her. When I arrived she so kindly cooked me chicken noodle soup, and made me lots of tea, to help me get better. However this cold was relentless and had no intention of giving up that easily.
We got up early the next morning and took off to Keystone. I haven't actually been snowboarding since the end of last season, so I ignored my cold, and was in the best possible mood. Two hours later, we were at the base. We threw on our stuff as quickly as possible, and went to pick up my comped ticket from the ticket window. Thank you Diana and Keystone for hooking it up! It was a beautiful sunny day, the perfect way to start the season. We unloaded at the top of the gondola and got right to it.
Its always a little awkward to get back on the board for the first time, especially when your wearing new boots. We took a warm up lap, then met up with our buddies Avran and JR. The four of us tore up Keystones' park setup, which was surprisingly legitimate, for being early season. After a few hours, we called it quits and went to the local mexican restaurant for some grub. Still not feeling up to the mark, I drank tea, and ate soup, while Suzanne, and JR had a couple of delicious looking margaritas.
One of my best friends who now lives in Texas was flying into Denver airport that evening, so we took off around 5:30pm to pick her up at 7pm. Courtney landed right on time, and was patiently waiting for us to pick her up at the curb. After snagging her, we drove another hour north back to Fort Collins to spend the night. Suzanne made us another fabulous meal, we watched a couple of movies, and passed out. I should say they passed out, I tossed and turned all night, unable to breathe or find a comfortable position to sleep.

Another early morning, and we took off to Loveland. Before we left town we stopped and grabbed some tea and bagels at one of the local places in FoCo. Two more hours in the car, and we arrived at a winter wonderland. Thanks to Dustin at Loveland Ski Resort, Suzanne and I got tickets and were so happy to shred some fresh snow. Courtney held it down in lodge with all of our stuff, while Suzanne and I took some hot laps. I had almost forgotten what it was like to have a fresh layer of that fluffy white stuff under your board. Singing at the top of our lungs, and having way too much fun we covered pretty much all of the mountain and slashed every available stash of powder. We had to call it quits earlier than we would have liked, but our legs were burning! We met Courtney back in the lodge, I got some more tea, then we hit the road to Breckenridge.
Our friend Avran so warmly welcomed us three girls into his house, and made us turkey taco's! Thank you Avran! After eating we decided to jump in the hot tub for a little while, and be complete dorks. Suzanne and I forgot our swimsuits, so we borrowed boardshorts from Avran, and wore tank tops... we pretty much looked straight out of the trailer park. It was hilarious. 45 minutes later we went back up to his house, and watched my favorite movie Grandma's Boy. Another sleepless night, and I woke up the next morning feeling far worse than the day before. I decided to take the day off and rest. I slept pretty much the whole day, drank a ton of tea, a gallon of orange juice, and still didn't feel very well. By the time Avran returned home from riding Courtney and I must have looked like we had died. Thankfully he is a great host, and made us feel very welcome at his home. The next day I had a photoshoot to do for a sunblock company. So we went to bed early, and I tried to get some sleep.
At 10am we met my rep for Roxy in the parking lot of the gondola. Still groggy in the head, I slapped on a smile and tried to make the best of the shoot. Fortunately, the group of people who were on the shoot were very mellow, and fun, so it we had a ton of fun. They took us back to this amazing house that they rented for us to stay in, we went over the goals for the shoot, then went back to the parking lot to start.  We shot for a few hours then they took us out to lunch at Eric's Downstairs. Thank you Sun Bum crew for feeding everyone!
 After lunch they dismissed a few of us, and I was happy to get to go back to the house and rest. Upon the arrival of everyone else from the shoot, the mutual consensus was to get in the hot tub. They snapped a few more candid shots of everyone hanging out in the hot tub, then it was time for the night to start. My Roxy rep Nichole Nemmers was turning 30 on this day, so the celebration was on. We ordered chinese food, and everyone else made some drinks. I still didn't feel well, so I pounded tea and orange juice all night. The group decided to go out to Cecilias to celebrate Nicholes' birthday, a few of us hung back...  I was ready to get some good sleep and shred Breckenridges' triple line on opening day.
The following day, I finally felt rested, and ready to give Breckenridge 100% of my energy. A good nights' sleep under my belt, I woke to my alarm at 8am, and was out the door by 9am. Tickets were still pretty expensive, but luckily Avran met me at the bottom, and let me use his buddy pass. With some financial support from Nichole as well, I ended up having to pay only $16 to ride all day! I was utterly amazed to hear that Breckenridge Ski Resort gives out FREE breakfast on opening day.

Avran and I took full advantage and had some scrumptious french toast, and coffee. After filling our bellies, we hopped right on Chair 5 and went straight to the triple jump line Breck had to offer. The vibes were good all around, but I have to say we were probably the most stoked people out there. We met up with our friend JR and took some laps, as well as my friend Elise, Melissa, and one of her friends. We rode hard all day, got our air-awareness back and started to throw down some mellow tricks. Man it feels good to be back!
Around 1:30pm my fellow Shred Betties team rider Michelle Shea came up to meet us to do a little learn to ride video. Although my voice was still not fully restored to its original state, she was very encouraging, and we got the shots we needed for her to make her edit. Avran and I decided to take a couple more laps after re-hydrating, but by the time we went back up to the jumps, the landings were kind of icy. 3pm snuck up on us quickly, and we retired for the day.
A 5 minute walk down the hill and we were back at his house, where I was crashing again for the night. Once again he cooked some great food, and we watched  Cash Cab. He had a demo to attend for a couple of hours, so I entertained myself by swinging back by the other house I had stayed in the previous night. I had left a couple of my belongings there, so I ran in and grabbed them.
After a hot shower, and a fresh change of clothes, I finally felt well-enough to go out for a little bit and experience Breck's night life. The night was very eventful, and full of good memories.
Early the next morning, I awoke to another beautiful day, unfortunately I couldn't find a pass for less than $50 so I decided to hit the road back to Utah. I got on the road at 10:30am, and was dreading another long day in the car. Thankfully, the day flew by, and I was surrounded by stunning scenery. I arrived safely home at 5pm, after making extremely good time through Colorado, and Utah.
All in all it was a successful trip, and set the mood for the upcoming season.


  1. Yay for fun in Colorado! Wish I had been around when you were finally feeling better!

    Oh, and turns out I actually did get a pic good enough for an ad... hope you like it!

  2. beautiful beautiful loved the adventures in Colorado keep up the good work Sounds like your off and running for the season!!


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