Thirteen is a Lucky Number - For Snow Lovers 3
Author thumbnail By Connie Lawn, DCSki Columnist
For the first time in 13 years, those of us who love snow sports could ski or ride in November in the areas closest to Washington, D.C. They are three resorts owned by Snow Time, Inc. — Liberty Mountain, Whitetail, and Roundtop. The resorts are also owned by Irv Naylor and family, and Snow Time has just celebrated its 50th anniversary. It has survived good and bad times, and plans to keep expanding.

For the opening weekend, my husband and I went to Liberty Mountain, about an hour and a half drive from the Washington metro area. I am close to many of the people there and value the historical background of the area — close to the battlefields of Gettysburg. Many people fought, suffered, and died in that region which is now so peaceful and beautiful. When I ski at Liberty, I believe I am sharing the mountains with the ghosts of Gettysburg. I can almost hear Lincoln’s Address, 150 years ago.

Liberty Mountain is now a place for fun, exercise, and rehabilitation, as well as reflection. The opening weekend was perfect, with machine made snow in excellent condition. 11 trails and 4 lifts were open, with snow from 18 to 24 inches. This visit was also an important personal one for me — I conquered some personal demons. I have been skiing for 50 years, but 3 years ago I was diagnosed with Parkinson disease and broke my hip skiing. The dizziness makes me afraid of the fall line, and I cannot really control my body when I try to turn right.

I could not put on boots without the help of my husband Charles. Everything is an effort and takes place in slow motion, like being trapped in molasses. But, despite this, I was able to ski! I was slow and looked like a beginner, but will not have to give up my beloved sport. In fact, the exercise and fresh air made me feel better.

I write about this because many of my snow-loving friends are facing their own set of problems, but we are not ready to give up yet. Senior and disabled people get even greater joy from conquering the mountains. I have long written about Wounded Warriors and adaptive skiers of all ages. Now I will also keep an eye on Seniors as well. I just hope the younger hot shots will be gentle on us when they see us dottering down the slopes. Please give us plenty of space!
About Connie Lawn

When she wasn't skiing, Connie Lawn covered the White House as a reporter since 1968.

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DCSki Sponsor: Massanutten Resort

Reader Comments

JimK - DCSki Columnist
December 11, 2013
Member since 01/14/2004
2,645 posts

The champion of adaptive skiers is now adapting to challenges of her own.  God bless and stay strong.  We're pulling for you.

bousquet19 - DCSki Supporter
December 14, 2013
Member since 02/23/2006
658 posts

So, it was 13 years ago that at least one of the Snow Time resorts opened in November.  As I was riding up the chair at Whitetail this November 29, I found myself wondering if and when that had happened before.  Thirteen years ago was before my son got me back onto the slopes after a 30-year...uh...break.  Thanks for that historical nugget, Connie, and for your report on your first outing of the season.  

Your persistence in the face of your current situation is an inspiration!  Glad to know you're out there enjoying the beauty of our mountains in the winter, the exhiliration of skiing, and the companionship of your husband.  Prayers for you both.  -- Woody

Connie Lawn - DCSki Columnist
December 17, 2013
Member since 04/19/2009
138 posts

Thank you all very much for your wonderful words. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and a great ski season! Connie

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