If I had to pick one picture that got me interested in photography, it would be one that I captured during this trip to the Maroon Bells in August 2003. It was probably the first time I consciously made decisions in order to take a shot and succeeded in getting a decent result. That image was selected as one of the Top 10 Digital Images of 2014 at my local photography club last night, so I thought this would make a timely Throwback Thursday post.
Got out to hike a bit more in the “backyard” a bit more in the summer of 2012. A relatively light load at work meant I was able to sneak away for a few hours during the week. This was great for two reasons: first because it meant little or no crowds, and second because it meant I could go longer than on weekends when we’d go out as a family with our 5-year old who cannot go as far.
I grew up in the tropics, and had never seen snow until I was almost 20. I disliked the cold gray winters of Iowa and Chicago. But that all changed once we moved to Colorado in 2003. Tried skiing once and was hooked. Skied a lot. Almost every weekend, from October through May. Averaged about 35 days per season at the beginning, increasing to about 50-60 days per season after that. Learned to carve. Learned to ski bumps. Learned to love powder, steeps, trees. Tore my ACL skiing in 2007; got it repaired and came back just as passionate as before. Moved to a ski town in 2007. Here are some shots from between 2003 and 2009.
After 4 years in Chicago, we got tired of urban living, especially the cold and gray winters. In 2002, we went to a friend’s wedding Denver, Colorado, and added on a trip to Moab, Utah. After that one week, both Geny and I had decided that we would move to Denver. She applied to residency programs in the Denver area and in the summer of 2003, we found ourselves in Lakewood, a suburb west of Denver. Some people ask us why we chose a suburb rather than the city. We picked Lakewood because (1) we’d already had our fill of urban living in Chicago, so Denver didn’t really appeal, and (2) we wanted to be close to outdoor recreational opportunities, and being at the base of the foothills gave us easy access to the mountain playground (we could pick up Bear Creek Trail about 4 blocks from our apartment).
If there’s one word to describe the 2010-2011 ski season in Colorado, it is EPIC. Record snow throughout the season resulted in too many powder days to count. Earliest ever openings for most lifts and terrain. By the end, it was hard to get motivated to go skiing unless there was 6 inches of new snow on the ground.
It’s winters like these that make it worthwhile to live in a ski town.