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Thursday, December 17, 2009
Updated: December 18, 6:19 PM ET
Highlands Weaseling


Nick DeVore abides: Tuesday was a good day to be in Highlands Bowl.

Even the crustiest powder weasel in Aspen knows what a ski blog is now. In fact, this distinguished weasel — let's call him "Dominic DiDuca" — may even read this blog from time to time because last Saturday, opening day at Aspen Highlands, he told me he wanted to get his "blog on." I wasn't sure what he meant, but there he was: A guy who rarely allows himself to be photographed smiling through a wily beard and late-model super-dark goggles at the top of Highland Peak saying he wanted in on the blog game. It was getting on toward the end of the day, so we shoved off, in different directions. Some storm days followed, then this morning an email showed up. Subject — Blog On:

Well, it's winter again in the old mining town and winter means skiing. Some things have changed, but skiing? You either get it or you don't, and I do. We were up at the Highlands last Thursday for the Powder Posse. The north sides were holding. And what with the foot of new on Monday, we were going left and right. Sean and Brian kicked the uptrack. I got in three in G8. If there's a better run at any ski area in the country, I'd like to see it.

The patrol up there (along with the bootpacking crew) did their usual impressive job of early season boot-compaction, and I was reaping the benefits of their hard work! Thanks guys and gals; I owe you a cold one. That was Thursday when a handful of us had Highland Bowl to ourselves.

Then on Saturday, my favorite ski hill opened for the season; the central portions of the bowl were open as well as the north side. I love the B zones, steep and sometimes technical, sometimes absurdly easy. Saturday was a technical day, but by Monday, after another foot, it was as good as I remembered it. Today the Ozone had that smooth creamy texture. Steeplechase has also been very nice. I know every rock in there and haven't hit one yet.

Yup, it's ski season again and my legs, lungs and heart are reminding me once again why I live here (and it's not because of the money, dope or the women).

Signed, "Dominic DiDuca"