Learning to “Ski Like a Girl” at Keystone Resort

I grew up with O.S.S. (Only-Sister Syndrome), which often became S.O.S. when participating in sports with my ultra-competitive brothers. The biggest slam to my ego was when they accused me of doing anything “like a girl.”

But here’s the deal: last week at Keystone Resort, I “skied like a girl” and loved every minute of it. While Jamie and Bode went sledding at the Nordic Center, Hadley and I got a sneak peak at Keystone’s infamous Betty Fest ski clinics, the ultimate in girl bonding. Their regular clinic includes two days of on-hill training for all levels, video analysis and women- specific discussions.

Our little Betty Fest consisted of amiable PSIA-certified women instructors and [perhaps most importantly] pink feather boas.

I have skied since I was a wee Canadian lassie and worked as a publicist in Utah’s ski industry. But here’s the deal: I haven’t improved in years. And so when my kick-butt instructor Cathy asked me what skills I wanted to work on, I told her I wanted to ski moguls like Wonder Woman, who incidentally, is one step above skiing like a girl.

Cathy’s first item of business: bringing me down to the depths of humility and correcting every single technique I had. And just when I felt I was starting to resemble a one-legged tree frog on skis, she built me back up so I was rocking those bumps…and not just rolling over them.

Though make no mistake: even during the rolling, the feather boa held up marvelously and I highly recommend Keystone’s next Betty Fest February 28 – March 1. I hope to be there, boa and all.

Keystone Lake: A Cut of Canada

Most families have some kind of initiation when someone marries into the clan. My American husband received a pair of hockey skates with the explicit instructions that any of our future half-breeds should be born on the blade.
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But here’s the the deal: a Canuck’s idea of skating is not circling around on some uninspired indoor rink with music blaring in the background. We like wide open spaces and skate for miles on rivers and lakes. Frozen nose hairs are an added bonus.

Keystone Lake
is about as close to The Real Skating Deal as I have come since moving to the United States. They boast their five-acre lake is the largest Zamboni-maintained outdoor skating rink in North America. My little clan had the time of our lives cruising around, watching the pick-up hockey game and marveling at the mountain grandeur as flurries of ice particles glittered in the swirling air. It was the perfect cut of Canada.

Minus the frozen nose hairs.

When the Spa & Sleigh Rides Do Not Mix

While at the Keystone Lodge and Spa I received the Aboriginal Mala Mayi treatment. After a gentle full-body scrub, I was covered in silky warm Mapi Body Mud, received a Paudi scalp massage, followed by a full-body Marta Kodo massage. It was 100 minutes of sheer bliss, only to be interrupted by a mad dash to Keystone’s famous sleigh ride dinner with my family.
sleigh ride
It should have been the perfect evening in our horse-drawn sleigh. Snuggling up to my children as we soared across Soda Creek Valley’s snowy wonderland. Watching the snowflakes collect on their lashes as we gazed up at the explosion of stars. Hearing them giggle in delight as we arrived at the restored ranch homestead. Eating a delicious four-course steak dinner with all the fixins’. Laughing as we sang along to cowboy tunes all night.

But it wasn’t perfect. Not for me, anyway.

Remember that blissful massage I had a couple hours prior? There was some detoxification involved. The kind that involves flushing the bad toxins out of my body at a very rapid rate. I’ll stop there. Just know that I became very acquainted with the cowboy outhouse all evening long. I learned then what I should have known all along: cowboys and spas should never, ever mix.

Maybe I should just stick to sking like a girl.

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