Last weekend the Gem’s kicked off their 2018-19 season, with both Arapahoe Basin and Loveland opening.
This means it’s time to start sketching out a template for Gems report to ensure some consistency between reports. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:
- Background: Setting the stage, including my prior experience (or lack thereof) with the area, historic curiosities, and why I’m stoked to get there.
- Travel: How far from Denver? Worthwhile stops along the way? Gotchas?
- Ski experience: terrain, lifts and snow.
- Locals: people I meet along the way from liftees, the retired dude skiing 100 days a year, to young groms
- Crowds and logistics: I value these two enough for them to merit a separate category.
- Lift tickets: Cost, ways to save, and what we paid. No Gem makes you pay for parking, so not need to report.
- Food: What would a regular meal cost.
- Beer: How guilty will you feel for buying a craft beer on hill?
- Camping beta: how far to the nearest (free) camping? Can you park in the area’s lots?
- Human-powered options: Uphill access policies? Backcountry gates? Nearby backcountry areas for skiing and/or snowshoeing.
- Map: A custom map showing some of our favorite trails, backcountry tour, spots to camp, and where you should have a picnic on the hill.
What am I missing? What should be “systematically” documented that Gems excel at? Things that make or break a ski area experience for you?
I doubt most adventures will go smoothly enough to be meaningfully smashed into such a formulaic template. It’s aspirational, and a point of reference to look back on later.