Props to My Old Mackinac Island Pals...
Where to start... I learned how to ski thanks to my old pals on Mackinac Island. I worked there a summer then hung out there, sometimes every weekend, for years after...hitchhiking up from MSU. I even skied across the Straits a couple times to visit friends in the winter.
One New Year's, maybe 1982, some friends and I flew over in a tiny plane then had fun for a few days. We brought our skis. And the whole gang went out for the day. I recall that it was about -20degF. (Hard to believe, but someone had a thermometer.) At that point in my skiing I knew how to do it but I was still watching others and learning by imitating.
One of the pals, Mark Chambers, and I stayed out on the trails a bit longer and really settled into a groove. I learned a lot that day!
Mark said I was doing pretty good then mentioned that in racing that it's the uphills that mattered most. That's something I never forgot.
We were out so long that day that I bonked pretty bad. I recall just waking up standing in the trail. Fun stuff.
Anyway, here's a pic of that fine day. Of some fine friends.
They let me tag along on all sorts of outings. I guess I was 19. They'd occupy a bouncer while I slipped in behind. I remember catching a lot of free ferry rides to the Island on the coattails of a group that included a lovely lass whose friend was the captain.
Then a bunch of us moved out to Breckenridge, CO, where things got really wild. We occupied an old miner's shack on the edge of town. Painted bright cobalt blue. We'd ski into town... And learn some more...
And never forget.