Jan 11

They use the phrase “Blue Bird Day” a lot here and as we headed onto the slopes of Heavenly today we saw first hand what exactly a Blue Bird Day is.¬†We had totally clear skies, very little wind, a chill in the air to remind us of where we were and the very pleasant surprise of plenty of snow to ski on.

There is no doubt that compared to this time last year, the snow season has been very limited – but that is the sport of skiing/boarding and something that you have to learn to live with throughout the world. Having said this, with the American kids back at school this week, the time on the slopes today was pretty awesome with no waiting in lines at the lifts and the slopes not crowded at all. What this meant was that it was a full day of skiing with little time to rest.

To give you an idea, here in Tahoe, all accommodation is in the village and each morning everyone catches the gondola up the mountain to the slopes. In our case, we are about 200m from the gondola and in fact it goes right about our pool. The trip up the mountain is about 20 minutes but this is 20 minutes of just beautiful scenery as you look over Lake Tahoe.

The slopes themselves today were well groomed and a joy to ride. There is something for everyone with some entry level slopes for the beginners and then some wonderfully long wide runs for those who have skied for some time. For those with a little more adrenalin in their system, the terrain park got a nice work out as well.

I knew it had been a great day of skiing when with about 45 minutes to go in the day, I came across Callum Coleman (Year 11) having a lesson and he was just exhausted. He had spent the day enjoying the top to bottom runs, jumping straight on the chair lift and doing it all again, over and over!

The views on the mountain are simply spectacular. To be standing in snow at the top of the mountain below a clear blue sky and looking across at the mountains and down to the lake was amazing and I am not sure if there is anything like it in the world!

This evening we had dinner at a local restaurant called Applebees. As we are now used to here, we were fed until we were full, enjoying a wide options of meals ranging from a perfectly tender steak to the hottest chicken wings anyone has ever tasted!

This evening the boys had the chance to either have a quiet night in the accommodation or go to the movies. It wasn’t surprising to see most boys choose to have a quiet night with the temptation of the spa too much and several of them in bed before 9pm – what a great sign that the skiing and boarding is fantastic here!

Come the end of the day we had a group of boys and staff who, not withstanding a few sore muscles and backsides, were injury free and worn out from a superb day on the slopes – and the great news is we get to do it all again tomorrow!

Photo 1: Yep – that is what we were forced to put up with. It is hard work having to enjoy a view like that while skiing the beautifully groomed runs!

Photo 2: Spencer Wilson (Year 9) and Tom Clark (Year 9) enjoy the trip up the gondola.

Photo 3: Scott Atkin (Year 10), Patrick Jessup (Year 10), Jack Foster (Year 10) and Mark Robinson (Year 10) get stuck into their meals at Applebees.

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