“A pair of skis are the ultimate transportation to freedom.” —Warren Miller
Between late summer backpacking trips and winter pow days, our team spends a lot of time in Lake Tahoe. One bright sunny day last spring, we headed out to a favorite zone near Carson Pass to enjoy some backcountry turns and put our Alpine Collection to the test. Read on for a fun recap of the day's adventures!
We meet in the parking lot well after dawn.
The motley crew assembles. Two skiers, three splitboarders and one intrepid photographer lugging about 35 pounds of camera gear, including an ancient square-format Mamiya we like to call the "Mama Mia!"
Burritos are packed into backpacks along with cold beers and plenty of snacks. Snacks; the unofficial delimiter between Type 1 and Type 2 fun.
“Safety meeting!” We pause at the trailhead to review the conditions; slush, icy patches and minimal avalanche danger await, along with blue skies and some prime spring skiing conditions.
One by one we beep our transceivers and set out onto the trail… straight into an icy single-track descent with a steep drop off on one side.
Somehow everyone makes it to the bottom in one piece. All of the nearby wild animals have now been scared away by our crew of wild humans. Hopefully no hibernating bears were awoken.
We begin our ascent and it isn’t long before the outer layers are coming off. Despite the puffing and panting as we make our way up the hill, our alpine shades keep the glare at bay and the fog away.
Backcountry touring is exactly what the Sunski Alpine Collection was designed for. The ultra-dark polarized lenses prevent eye fatigue in blinding conditions, while the vented sun shields provide more glare protection than a traditional pair of sunglasses, an important factor to prepare for when you're dealing with the coming-at-you-from-all-angles reflection of sun on snow.
And who wants to slog it uphill on a sunny day wearing a pair of steamy, swampy ski goggles? No thank you.
Pair the Alpine Collection's clever removable magnetic sun shields with grippy nose pads for a sweat proof, stay-put fit and you've got a stellar pair of touring sunglasses.
“Hi fives all around!” As we reach our destination, the vibes are sky high and the crew is all smiles.
At the base of the mountain we set up our lunchtime spread. Beers are cracked and burritos quickly appear then disappear into hungry mouths.
We eye potential lines and discuss various starting points from the peak. The first two skiers ascend, quickly remove their skins then begin their descent.
Hoots and hollers drift across the sunny skies. Stoke levels: maximum!
The rest of the crew can’t get up near the peak fast enough. The splitboarders make a hasty ascent, switch over and prepare to drop in.
Yeehaw! Down we zoom. This is freedom; Blue skies, fresh tracks and friends all around. It doesn’t get much better than this.
Back at the basking zone, more beers are cracked and the crew takes a brief nap in the sunshine before calling it a day.
What a day! Alpine shades on to cut the late afternoon glare, we glide our way back down the mountain, grinning from ear to ear.
We’re reminded of something Seth Godin once said:
“Life is like skiing. Just like skiing, the goal is not to get to the bottom of the hill. It’s to have a bunch of good runs before the sun sets.”
If that’s the goal, then this is good living.