Summit County Summit – Written October 20, 2003

There’s a place I go. I’ve only been there once, but I visit it every day. The top of the highest peak in Arapahoe Basin. The air is thin and the snow looks like a sea of sugar waiting to be cut. I can’t see anyone except myself, as if I’m seeing myself from the heavens. The howl of the wind is surpassed only by the glare of the sun in a cloudless sky off the serene chaos of the powder and rock below. The climb across the East Wall above The Basin is treacherous, if only for the wind and lack of oxygen, over thirteen thousand feet above the sea. The bowl of A-Basin catches the wind and whips it around the cliff, which is constantly plagued with avalanches. The terror of the moment is superceded by the intensity of a sudden calm of the winds and my worries. Realizing this euphoria, the zephyr washes over me. I drop in, and I am free.

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