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  • 23 Sep 2023 11:40 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Well, we feel it in the air -- we ski in four months.

    Thank goodness the summer is over but thank goodness we had a great time at the SUP party on Saturday the 14th.

    We had over 20 people attend and Sunshine, who spoke at the club a month ago, brought SUP boards and gave lessons on how to use a Stand Up Paddle Board properly. Yours truly was the first to fall off his board and hit the water hard but as the old saying goes,” …you just flop down on top and kick your legs like can-can dancer, and, wow, you are right back on.." (that was either a Twain writing or something I read in Playboy years ago).

    Next year, make sure you can attend. Nearly everybody got up on a board and one deranged individual could not stop singing Jimmy Buffett songs while standing and paddling (the derangement of the casual ski club member is greatly underestimated).

    The SUP  party was fun but in October it is a HALLOWEEN PARTY AT HILDA’S. Man, it does not get any better than this. Yes, we will have music, food and more hoots and goblins than you can shake a stick at. Everyone dresses up, or comes ready to act up, so let’s enjoy the best of what the fall has to offer at Hilda’s wonderful barn at Flat Duck in Georgia. Miss Tenn. v. Alabama; miss the crowning of the King of England’s love child; or miss aliens wanting to take you on a ride around the block. But do not miss the HALLOWEEN PARTY.


    Here are some of the latest trends and developments in snow skiing:

    New ski technology: Ski manufacturers are constantly developing new technologies to improve the performance and durability of skis. Some of the latest innovations include:

    ELECTRIC SKIS- Due the success of the electric bikes, expect to have electric skis on the slopes this winter. They will include ambient lights, Apple Pay, and in crashes, they say they are electrifying!!!

    VAPING HELMETS- Not that skiing is enough to keep everyone engaged, new vaping helmets will aid the average bored skier by allowing him to vape and ski and enjoy the best of Colorado’s most fabled cash crop at the same time. Man, how impressive!

    PORT-A-POTTY SKI SUITS- Yes,we are all getting older, boys and girls, and how many times had we had to go to the bathroom while we are midway up a lift with a bunch of snowboarders? No more embarrassment, you can both pee and poop in the new suits and still have a full day of skiing. However, the suit must be thrown away after each use, and you get to put them in the same diaper disposal as babies and small toddlers. Sort of seems to have the full circle thing going around with those ski suits. doesn’t it?

    JAMES BOND SKI POLES- This year you will be able to have ski poles that can be used as swords in case of emergency and to store your favorite cocktail on the inside of the poles when you are ready for your après ski party.  Remember, the cocktails in the poles will be …”shaken not stirred…”

    I’VE BEEN THERE DONE THAT SKI GOGGLES- Okay, everyone wants to do Corbet's Couloir at Jackson Hole, but nobody wants to drop 40 to 50 feet down a narrow passage and try to survive the rest of the way.  With these new googles it takes the information about your skiing done during the day on green slopes, and lets you wear them at night superimposed in your goggles going down the Couloir and making you feel  as if you are really skiing on a ski slope of death.  I think this is the very best thing going. And now that all the ski resorts are in it’s memory, this year they say they are going to try and get the movie …DEBBIE DOES DALLAS ... for next year as an optional app. Wow just Wow.



  • 22 Aug 2023 9:36 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Well, the dog days of summer are almost over, and you can almost taste the sweet smell of cooler weather in the air. I know as I write this, it will be in the area of 105 degrees Fahrenheit today, so a cool breeze cannot come soon enough.

    A hardy shout-out to everyone who went down the Hiwassee the 12th of August and enjoyed the best of times and beauty of going down probably one of the most gorgeous rivers in the world. Make plans to go next year. It is such a good time. Also, no crocodiles or gators.

    Also on the 25th we are renting a VIP box at the Lookouts game. There are 55 people who signed up by the deadline and will be there Friday. Just another day to interact with ski club folks.

    One more thing, we have a Stand Up Paddle Board Party on September 16th. Put it on your calendar and come to the regular meeting to find out more details or look at the event on the website. 

    And now for other matters: 

    The ski season is just around the corner, and early predictions are looking good. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is forecasting above-average snowfall for the western United States, including the Rocky Mountains and Sierra Nevada. This is good news as it means more powder days and better skiing conditions.

    Can we all agree flat-land hillbillies should be happy with this news?

    In addition to the favorable snowpack forecast, there are a few other factors that suggest that the 2023-2024 ski season will be a good one. First, the El Niño climate pattern is expected to continue, which usually brings above-average snowfall to the West Coast. Second, the winter temperatures are expected to be cooler than average, which will also help to boost the snowpack.

    So, they just stopped skiing in Mammoth this month and we in no way should expect the same in 2024, but we are going to Mammoth this winter and we need to fill this trip up fast. Once there, we can hear all the locals talk about how great skiing was last year.

    Also, the best town in the world is Jackson Hole. Please call Pat Caldwell and let him sell you on going there also with the club.

    Here are some tips for thinking about your 2024 ski trip:

    • Just DO It!!!!!!! Hey, we all are getting limited on our future good times, and we all need to take as many trips as we can before 2030;
    • Start buying last year’s ski clothes and look sharp on the slopes;
    • Be determined to ski more days this year than you have in the last 10 years (not total for 10 years, just for one year);
    • Understand if the weather is bad, it sounds like happy hours will start a little early in the day and just make a go of it.

    With a little planning, and an attitude redo, you can ensure that you will have a great time skiing this fall regardless of the weather.


    How many snowboarders does it take to screw in a light bulb????

    Nine. One to do it and eight to say, 'nice turns.'

    See you at the meeting,


  • 25 Jul 2023 8:11 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Yes, we are in the blazes of summer, but hopefully everyone is still buzzing about the recent Lake Party at Mike and Beth Rawlston’s home in beautiful Soddy Daisy.

    The weather was good, (only a few showers) the food was excellent, and it was a great time for everyone to get together. Already looking forward to next year. Hilda Jones and Jinksie Harris did a wonderful job with many others, and all who helped with the party will get free passes to heaven when it comes their time, for setting up and tearing down for the party. Bill Hooton did a great job with music but some of his songs made me think that he might wish to go the other direction. More power to you, Bill.

    Remember, we have the club trip down the Hiwassee River August 12, and the VIP night at the Lookouts Stadium Friday, August 25. Speak with Barbara Wise about the floating and Bob Trammel about the game. Both will be good times.


    As I said earlier, and we all know, this has been a very hot and intense summer. If you do anything outside, it is just so hot it wears you out in no time flat.

    Then comes the $64,000 question: “How am I going to make it through this heat.”

    Well, here is something that I tried and maybe it will work for you.

    After mowing the yard and wishing that all grass in my yard would die a very horrible death before the next week, I get a cold drink, close my eyes and I think about Telluride, Colorado. We went there with the club this past winter.

    It was cold, but not that cold, and it was the first time that I had been skiing in three years due to COVID. Some things have changed but almost everything was the same.

    It was so enjoyable, skiing with friends and feeling the cold air rush by our faces down the snow-covered hills. Even when I fell and could not stop sliding down steep terrain, it was just a blast knowing people, that I will never see again, would be looking at me with total disgust as I bumbled and fumbled down the slope waving at them going by.

    Then, I remember skiing one morning with Tom DuBose and doing it in the bowls and blacks and stopping before lunch for coffee and beer at Gorrono’s looking at the most majestic mountains of Telluride that are etched on a Coors beer. Seeing that makes living the rest of the year enjoyable regardless of what may happen. I had forgotten skiing is not only a sport but also a wonderful drug that gives the most amazing highs. Highs you never forget and will not get you thrown in jail.

    Writing this it is just about 90 degrees and I plan on mowing the yard again. I plan on thinking about Telluride the entire time while mowing and how great the next ski season will be. I might even put on a small jacket in the heat for a little while, just in case.

    See if this works for you.

    Dress warmly and see you at the next meeting,


  • 20 Jul 2023 12:13 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Twenty-seven brave souls departed Atlanta on March 16 for Kitzbuhel, Austria. We had a great trip over to Frankfurt, Germany. We had a transfer there that was wild (thanks to a screwy airport design). From there 25 CSC members departed, leaving two that were late to the plane. We arrived in Munich to meet our guide, Max. The other two joined us that evening after a pleasant train ride. We enjoyed a great hotel with fabulous food. We had fun that week either by skiing or doing side trips. The skiing was a little slushy due to warm conditions, but was still enjoyable. The side trips included going to an animal farm where the deer and other farm animals came up to you. We were there for a feeding of all of the animals. There was a pecking order too for who ate first. We also took sleigh rides, a trip to Zell Am See, a trip to Salzburg, and Swarovski world with a visit to a mountain restaurant where we made homemade apple strudel (same place Ina took us several years ago). We returned by way of Innsbruck by train.

    Seven days later we departed for Munich to fly again by way of Frankfurt to arrive in Edinburgh. Another interesting connection – you would just have to be there to have had all the fun. We arrived in Edinburgh and met our guide, Joe Harrower. He was our guide three years ago. We enjoyed Edinburgh Castle, city tour, and spending the night in our five star hotel, The George. The next day we continued to St. Andrews, then to a city tour and night at Aberdeen. We also had a distillery tour, three nights in Inverness, a Culloden Battlefield tour, and a mountainside walk up to see the reindeer (some of us did not attempt the climb). We had the pleasure of going to a second distillery and continued up the scenic coast, going to the farthest point in Scotland. Some of us even walked on the beach there and waded in the 35-40 degree waters. The following day we headed toward Fort William and enjoyed a cruise of Loch Ness and had a live Clansman dress out show (featuring Janet Brooks and Buddy Jones). The following day we headed to Glasgow with stops on the way and had a scenic tour of the city. We had our spectacular final night dinner at the Corinthian Club and enjoyed a good night’s sleep (oh did I mention we departed at 3:30AM?). Our group departed again for Frankfurt for a transfer for Atlanta. And yes, we had a lot of issues again in Frankfurt due to plane trouble. We basically ran to the plane which should have already left. but when we arrived at the gate,we then had to stand on a transfer bus for 90 minutes. We will not transfer through Frankfurt again. Our fearless group arrived back in the states, and thank goodness, I am happy to report we had no injuries on the trip.

  • 22 May 2023 8:58 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Have we all had a good 2023?

    Well, it may not have been perfect so far, but we still have many reasons to be thankful that we are members of the ski club because of the many different and fun activities we have monthly.

    The first week of every month we have a regular meeting at the Enclave, or we are getting ready for a big party. As everyone knows, our regular meetings are the best way to start the month, get in the mood for fun, and our parties are the best.

    This summer on July 15, we have the social event of the year in Hamilton County being the annual  “Chattanooga Ski Club Lake Party,” which is always fun and a good time for all with or without the “Pain Killer,” punch that has enlightened and tortured many a soul for years. More info next month so look for it.

    Looking forward to the Halloween and Christmas Party are just two more reasons to cheer and enjoy ourselves during the latter part of the year. Bourbon tours, hiking, and bike riding are all available with a trip down the Hiwassee and this year we have a rented VIP room at the Lookouts game just for us and friends August 25. Mark the August date on your calendar because we will be able to watch baseball inside or outside and that may be as good as it gets.

    We also will have a booth set up for the ski club at Nightfall in early June and July. The promotion booth is a neat way to promote the club and meet people. Where else do you find comradery, community, and the perfecting the joy of living in one club? Look at our website and I am sure you will find something to become involved with.

    SKI TRIPS 2024
    Our trips are filling up so make sure you sign up sooner rather than later. Signing up for a trip now gets everyone thinking about snow and getting ready to ski. Nothing better in the summer than to think about the cold and snow.

    ”Within the ski industry a 'Jerry,' otherwise known as a 'Gaper,' a 'Joey,' a 'Gorb,' etc. is someone [a skier or snowboarder] doing a boneheaded move. My personal definition of a Jerry is: An individual who exhibits a true lack of understanding for their sport, or for life in general.”
    Freeskier Magazine

    Rapidly down the mountainside,
    The pure powdery snow spraying!
    Nearer to vast sapphire skies,
    And long ere a perplexed purple.
    Bracing winds travel from afar,
    And carelessly tousle the hair,
    Long after the mists of orange,
    In the treasured golden noon,
    On the other side of the moon!
    Enormous speeds are attained,
    As wild laughter is trailing,
    Like a first trip on ocean blue,
    And the view from the railing.
    Side to side in and out of trees,
    Snow sprinkled, sunlit emeralds.
    This could be the meaning of free,
    Racing the wind no cares behind me!

    See you at the next meeting,


  • 21 Apr 2023 12:38 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hey there, Hi there, Ho there,

    In the infamous words of several great epidemiologists discussing diseases, “What goes around likely comes around another time.”

    Yes, I am proud and more than honored to be the President of our friendly local ski club for the next year and look forward to seeing everyone more regularly at meetings and events. The next year’s trips are coming out, so make sure to review, size a trip up, tell everyone what it means to go on a ski club trip and how much fun everybody has.


    Scott Kramer has been the ski club coordinator for trips the past couple of years and decided to step down from the position and just be a regular member. I understand Scott hit the ground running in the position and put in several times over of herculean effort in the job.

    Please give Scott a hearty notice of thanks when you next see him because he is what the club is all about: service to others, helping all to have a great time.

    Happy trails, Scott, look forward to seeing you at the meetings.


    When COVID raised its ugly head and shut everything down including our ability to assemble, Bob Tramel was our President. He dealt with the COVID issues as they related to the club brilliantly. He dealt with Zoom meetings of the ski club board, made sure that we were able to have meeting again safely, and then started everyone going on ski trips again.

    Not only did Bob hold the throttle during turbulent waters, but he was going through several personal issues that required a tremendous amount of time. He did not waive his duties to his family or the club.  Bob had a vision he could do it all and he did it all with a flair that was all his own.

    Hardcore grit and gravel are the components of Bob’s moral character. As a club, we were so fortunate that he was in a leadership role at one of the most difficult times of our organization’s existence.

    Once again, thank Bob personally when you see him for his service. He and others with the club are what make us so special.


    Our ski season is over, and we are all the better for it. Until we can feel the cool breeze of winter and the snow under our boards, here is a little ditty to help us wile away the summer months thinking about winter:


    Wind & more wind
    will it ever end?

    Ice on top of ice
    a bitter harsh place

    Drifts & drifts of snow
    the days are longer now

    Winter endless winter
    & still you’re filled with wonder.

    See you next month at the meeting,


  • 20 Mar 2023 8:54 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    From all accounts, our last western ski trip of the year, Park City, was one for the record books, with tons of snow.  Be sure to read Scott Kramer’s trip report and check-out the pictures on our website and Facebook page. 

    Ski season may be about over for the 2022-2023 season, but our club has a lot of activities planned for the “off-season."  The first will be the Virginia Creeper bike ride & Barter Theater trip on April 27-29, and there are many more after that.

    At the April Meeting, which will be at Hilda & Willis’ Flat Duck Farm, we are planning on announcing the destinations and dates for the western trips for the 2023-2024 ski season.  I’m sure you’ll want to be there for that announcement.

    As has been mentioned before, at the April Meeting we will have the election of officers for the 2023-2024 year.  If you are interested in running for President, Vice President, Secretary, or Treasurer, nominations will be taken from the floor or contact our Membership Chairman, Jim Bates at or 706-537-6331.

    At the March Membership Meeting, we had a special guest, Savana Keeton, Executive Director Cumberland Trail Conference.  She talked about how her organization is building the trail which starts (or ends depending on your perspective) at Signal Point and ends at the TN / KY / VA border at Cumberland Gap.  They hope to complete the last 50 miles of the eventual 300 mile length in the next 5 years.  She also describes how the CTC works with the TN State Parks and the Friends of the Cumberland Trail to build, maintain, and promote this scenic hiking trail.  At the Board meeting after her presentation, we voted to donate $100 to the non-profit CTC.

    We have two new members to report: Sheri Dahrling, and Seymour Tomarin.  Let’s all welcome them. 

    Stay safe everyone,


    Event Listing

    April Membership Meeting & Election of Officers @ Flat Duck Farm April 4, 2023

    Virginia Creeper Bike Ride & Barter Theater Trip- April 27-29, 2023

    Crescent Ski Council Spring Convention @ Myrtle Beach – April 27-30, 2023  

    May Membership Meeting @ TBD May 2, 2023  

    Day Trip to Gibbs Garden – May 17, 2023

    June Membership Meeting @ TBD June 6, 2023  

    Lake Party @ TBD - TBD

    Lookouts Baseball Game @ AT&T Field’s Metro Plumbing, Heating & Air Lounge – August 25, 2023

    Bourbon Trail @ Jailers Inn Bardstown, KY – September 29 – October 1, 2023

    Len Foote Hike Inn Trip – October 20-21, 2023

    Crescent Ski Council Fall Convention @ Gatlinburg – October 27-29, 2023 

  • 13 Mar 2023 9:09 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Park City ski trippers have recently returned from a great ski trip at this resort. The snow was incredible! Some of the group started out by staying Friday night at the Drury Inn near the airport. We all got together at the happy hour and had a good time. The next morning we flew on United out of Atlanta to Denver, then onward to Salt Lake. All flights and bus transfers both going out and returning were on time. 

    After a short 45 minute bus ride, we arrived at the Park City Peaks Hotel, which we found to be a pretty nice setup with indoor and outdoor hot tubs and heated pool. A hot breakfast was provided every morning consisting of scrambled eggs, sausage and bacon, along with cereal, waffles, muffins, etc. They also provided a welcome pizza party on Saturday evening where we all got together and planned our week of skiing.

    The hotel shuttle provided transportation back and forth from the slopes every day, which was about a 10 min ride to the drop off point at the nearest lift. One of the drivers, Dean, was really helpful with information and getting us to restaurants in the evening.

    The snow conditions were incredible all week, with 36” of snow for the week (highest at 16” and 8”). The Thursday before we got there they got 23” of snow. We had fresh snow every day. Probably the best week of snow that the group has ever skied in. And one of the best things about this trip was that nobody was injured.  The soft snow conditions probably had a lot to do with that.

    The group dinner was held in one of the hotel conference rooms, with  the food consisting of East Carolina BBQ Pork, a cheese platter, roasted garlic mashed potatoes and some desserts (All provided by Luna’s Kitchen).  The dinner went well and we all had enough to eat without too many leftovers.

    On Thursday evening, several trip members met up at the Boneyard Grill, which is a place that did not require reservations. This was a lot of fun and something we will consider doing on future trips. 

    Some members of the group participated in some non-skiing activities, which included bobsled rides (really fast!) and snowmobiling (exclusive ride with just two sleds and the guide). All had fun doing these activities as well.

    Everyone had a great time and we will likely have Park City on the list as a possible destination in the future. Check out the photos on the Ski Club opening web page for pictures of this trip, as well as the other ski trips that took place this ski season.
  • 21 Feb 2023 10:54 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Ski season is in full swing with two of our three western trips completed.  Be sure to read the trip reports written by trip leaders Roy Brunner and Beverly Cleek, who both did an excellent job running the trips.  We still have one western trip, Park City, and our European trip to Austria and Scotland to go!

    In my January article I mentioned the money we raised for charity at the Christmas Party.  Later that month, the Board of Directors voted to round up that amount to $500 and that it be donated to Area 4 Special Olympics.  Last week I received a very nice letter from Judy Rogers, the Director, thanking us for helping their athletes.  I would also like to add my thanks to our membership for being so generous.

    At the upcoming March Membership meeting (Tuesday March 7th, social at 6 pm, business meeting at 7 pm) at the Enclave Subdivision Clubhouse (950 Channel View Lane, Hixson) we will have a special guest speaker, Savana Keeton, Director Cumberland Trail Conference (  As you probably know, the Cumberland Trail is an extensive foot trail constructed and maintained largely by volunteers. The Trail is managed by the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC).  When completed, the Cumberland Trail will extend more than 300 miles from its northern terminus in Cumberland Gap National Historical Park in Kentucky to its southern terminus at the Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Military Park located on Signal Mountain.  Currently the trail has 210 open miles and 50 trail heads.  I’m sure you’ll want to hear and see Savana’s presentation and ask questions.

    As has been mentioned before, at the April Meeting we will have the election of officers for the 2023-2024 year.  If you are interested in running for President, Vice President, Secretary, or Treasurer, please contact our Membership Chairman, Jim Bates at or 706-537-6331.

    Did you buy an Ikon Pass for the COVID shortened 2019-2020 ski season?  If so, you may be in for credit that can be used for a 2023-2024 Ikon Pass.  The amount of the credit varies based on how many days you used your 2019-2020 pass, with a maximum credit of $150 for passes there were used for only one day.  The total value of the credits is about $17.5 million.   This came about from 12 skiers who brought lawsuits against Alterra Mountain Company.  Those were consolidated into a class action lawsuit that went to mediation.  The parties came to an agreement and last month a federal judge approved it.  The firm representing the skiers, Dovel & Luner, will receive $2.9 million in attorney’s fees and costs.

    Unfortunately, we don’t have any new members to report this month. 

    Stay safe everyone,

    Event Listing   

    Park City Ski Trip – February 25 – March 4, 2023

    March Membership Meeting @ The Enclave, 950 Channel View Lane, Hixson - March 7, 2023

    Kitzbühel / Scotland Ski / Touring Trip – March 16-30, 2023

    April Membership Meeting & Election of Officers @ TBD April 4, 2023  

    Virginia Creeper Bike Ride & Barter Theater Trip- April 27-29, 2023

    Crescent Ski Council Spring Convention @ Myrtle Beach – April 27-30, 2023  

    May Membership Meeting @ TBD May 2, 2023  

    Day Trip to Gibbs Garden - TBD

    June Membership Meeting @ TBD June 6, 2023  

    Lake Party @ TBD - TBD

    Lookouts Baseball Game @ AT&T Field’s Metro Plumbing, Heating & Air Lounge – August 25, 2023

    Bourbon Trail @ Jailers Inn Bardstown, KY – September 29 – October 1, 2023

    Len Foote Hike Inn Trip – October 20-21, 2023

    Crescent Ski Council Fall Convention @ Gatlinburg – October 27-29, 2023  

  • 15 Feb 2023 2:23 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    As a first-timer to Telluride, the description of the resort by a friend rings very true.  “The skiing is great, but the views are what keeps us coming back.”  Also, the town has a great “vibe.”  I thought the skiing was phenomenal, while the views were simply incredible.  During the trip, we found out that Coors uses the view from the top of the Prospect lift in their advertisements.

    Most of the trip went without a hitch.  After a festive night at the Drury, Team Chattanooga hit the Atlanta airport early Saturday morning.  The early bird arrival didn’t exclude us from long security lines, but once through, everything fell into place.  Arriving in Montrose, a quick baggage claim, and we were on the road to Telluride.  It is worth pointing out that between our bus driver and Mickey Hardeman, the luggage was loaded quickly.  After last year’s fiasco at Breckenridge, the bus company sent the A-team.  Dave Connors and Gary Farmer took a leisurely three-day drive and our Raleigh connection of Ernie Braasch and Rod Davis also drove.  Ernie and Rod used their car for ultimate flexibility and added another slope delay on their return trip home.

    Bear Creek Lodge was ready for us, and we quickly found our way to assigned rooms.  Most of the accommodations were spacious and comfortable, although there were two or three mattress complaints coupled with a few bed assignments that didn’t match their website descriptions.  Our welcome wine and cheese party was quite nice and gave everyone a chance to meet virtually everyone on the trip.  While we didn’t have slope access, the lodge was very efficient in transporting us the approximate two-minute bus ride to the slopes.  I didn’t hear any complaints of long waits to or from the slopes.

    As far as the skiing was concerned, Telluride didn’t disappoint.  It seemed like all of the lifts serviced a variety of terrain to match every skill level.  And once upon the summit, the views were 360 degrees of “oh my God” beautiful.  Monday and Thursday were powder days that had everyone smiling.  The snow conditions were really good throughout the week.  Thursday saw the opening of the brand-new replacement lift for “Plunge,” and several CSC’ers managed to make history as riders on the lift’s inaugural day.  Scott Kramer continued his reign as the Bump Run King adding tree and double-black run bumps to his repertoire.  David Cole’s exuberance at talking about his ski day on the bus was pretty infectious.  It was fun and enjoyable to hear a little guy expound on what a great time he was having.  And it seemed like every day ended at the outdoor hot tubs where the water had us sweating after just a little while.

    Our trip experienced no injuries despite Hilda Jones’ best effort.  There were a couple of pre/prior-trip leg injuries (one Whistler related, one luggage related) that resulted in last minute changes and near cancellations.  But troopers trooped and shops replaced slopes and the show went on.  There was one report of seriously chapped lips, but thankfully, no hospitalization was required.

    Our group gathered at the Crazy Elk pizzeria in Mountain Village for our group meal.  The Crazy Elk restaurant was conveniently a short walk from the gondola.  The pizza, salad, and service there were all fantastic.  Our hosts went the extra mile to make sure we never had to wait on food.  Every single trip participant made it to the dinner (and the married ones too).  And kudos to our trip leader for negotiating beer and wine with the meal.

    Jinksie, Sonya and Scott Harris along with Hilda Jones, JoAnn Stellar, and Becky Fine managed a day of horse-back riding and from all reports had a spectacular time (although there were rumors of a tree incident).  The Connor clan, Dave, his daughters Heather and Tracy their husbands and kids managed a snowmobiling trip, but they will have to tell the tale, and there were no rumors of tree incidents.

    A trip into town revealed a quaint village with an Old West feel.  There were plenty of restaurants, but one anomaly was that the shops tended to close down around 5:00 pm.  We did find the Mahr building, which at one time housed the bank that was the site of Butch Cassidy’s first bank robbery.  The city itself is a convenient gondola ride from Mountain Village with some more spectacular views.

    Thanks to Bill Coolidge, Jim Kapsho, and Clinton and Connie Cavett for hosting our end of trip pot-luck dinner.  There was food galore and still some Crazy Elk leftover pizza on the menu.  All things considered, the spread was pretty impressive and we didn’t come anywhere near to eating it all.  The host condo was spacious enough to accommodate everyone and really, we had a great time socializing.

    Finally, the return trip started out pretty uneventfully.  Again, our ace bus driver, Mickey Hardeman, and a few others made short work of loading the luggage, and we were on our way.  Fortunately, trip leader Bev made sure the bus arrived about 30 minutes earlier than planned since about three ski clubs converged on Southwest airlines’ queue at about the same time.  The serpentine line extended around Southwest’s area, in front of Delta’s and right on outside.  This was followed by another spectacular line to security.  Followed by another long line boarding a full flight to Denver.  With a three-hour layover in Denver, there was plenty of time for Southwest to get our baggage correct, but about eight of us experienced the joy of finding one of our bags was sent to St. Louis.  Another layer to the adventure delaying our midnight drive back to Chattanooga.

    But otherwise, this was a spectacular trip.  I hated for it to end.

    Written by Kevin Cleek

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