by David Harris
There are not very many things more exhilarating in the world than getting high off zooming down a hill on a board or skis in the powder by with the jagged peaks in the backdrop.
Due to the tropical climate and lack of significant mountains in Houston, skiing is not an activity frequently participated by the students. However, over the winter break many students make their way to the mountains to go skiing and snowboarding.
Going skiing can be a way for Houstonians to learn what winter is really like. The temperature in Houston hardly ever dips below freezing and ski vacations allow for us to experience a different type of cold to escape from the sweltering heat of Texas.
Many students choose to take ski trips over winter break, as it provides an escape from the stress of school. A relaxing ski trip is the perfect way to end the year, winding down after the hustle and bustle of finals and the Christmas season.
Senior Antony Tran had a blast with his family over the holidays on his snowy trip to Mountain High Ski Resort in California. It was his first time ever to on a ski trip and he had a fun time learning how to snowboard.
“I did not have an instructor so I was out of control for the whole time I was there,” Tran said. “Snowboarding is a pain in the butt. Literally, I could not sit down for weeks.”
Skiing is also an experience unlike any other because of the amount of different people you see on the slopes.
“Going skiing makes for great people watching,” Tran said. “I talked to people from South America and all over Europe there.”
The Tran family enjoyed skiing so much in California, that they decided to go on a spontaneous ski trip to the other side of the country in Virginia over the MLK weekend.
“We are going to visit our relatives in Virginia and to have a little fun over the long weekend,” Tran said. “I’m excited to snowboard in the ice now rather than the powder.”
Others who depart on ski trips actually know how to ski. Senior Coby Hitipeuw flew to Denver, Colorado with his older brother after christmas to go skiing and snowboarding in Breckinridge for a couple of days.
“I ski and snowboard a lot and we go almost every year,” Hitipeuw said. “I like to do jumps and go over moguls.”
Freshman Daniel Kellems also took a trip to Park City Utah with his dad over New Years.
“The snow in Park City is really good.”
It was Kellems’ third time to go on a ski trip.
“My favorite types of runs are powdery blue slopes.”
Senior Diego Gonzales had a very stormy but exhilarating experience snowboarding. He snowboarded in Vail and Beaver Creek Colorado over the break. Vail and Beaver Creek are among the most beautiful ski resorts in the nation but the winter weather almost got the best of Gonzales.
“I was going up the lift towards a double diamond and right when I got off, the visibility was almost zero, almost like a blizzard,” Gonzales said. “I had no choice but to snowboard through it.”
Gonzales almost broke his wrist and fell five time because he could not see a thing. “I finally made it down but it gave me a huge adrenalin rush because it was scary.”
Thankfully everyone who went on ski trips came back to St. Thomas relatively unharmed.
Whether it is flying down the mountain, or getting caught in the midst of a blizzard, students enjoy ski trips and the change in climate they present.