Firsthand Report: Liberty Mountain, Feb. 21, 2007 3
Author thumbnail By Connie Lawn, DCSki Columnist

It was so nice of Liberty to give us the entire mountain on a sunny, perfect day. We could not resist the temptation of the Snow Time advertisements, advising us to “take a snow day.” The day was simply too perfect to stay indoors. Besides, we had to make a study of Global Warming! We rushed to finish our work early, and left Bethesda at 1 p.m. By 2:30 we were on the slopes. There were, of course, some other people there, as well as the ever-friendly and helpful staff. After 4:30, more people began to arrive - especially those enjoying after school skiing and boarding. Most of them appeared to head directly to the terrain parks, half pipes, and Adventure Alley. Others had some great rides in the uncrowded snow tubing area. But for us, there were the glorious slopes. What a sheer joy to zip up and down them - no waiting, and no crowds. When I am relaxed and happy, I sing as I ski. This was definitely an Andrew Lloyd Weber day!

View of the Carroll Valley from the top of Alpine Quad. Photo provided by Charles Sneiderman.

All the runs were in excellent shape -especially Heavenly, Eastwinds, Stratas, Sidewinder, Whitney’s Way, and White Lightning. I enjoyed the bumps on Eastwind - just the right size for me. We could not work up the nerve to try Upper Strata - the moguls had really built up there. It was probably fine, but why fight it, when I was simply in the mood to cruise.

All throughout Liberty, the snow was soft and forgiving. It was listed as groomed packed powder. The temperature was about 45, and we saw at least one teenage girl snowboarding in shorts. It was a dramatic change from the ice and bitter cold of the past few days, and the warmth did not last long in any case. Spring is not yet here, and that is good. I am still hoping our nearby areas can last until April, and make up for the disaster of the early season.

Charles surveys the bumps on Upper Ultra. Photo provided by Connie Lawn.

I was pleased to see evidence of the increased safety measures. There were signs which read “chill,” “slow down,” and “ski fast, lose pass.”

Another sign we saw at the Strata Quad board said “thank you for not smoking in the lift line.” That made me especially happy. When I see people smoking in line, and blowing it back to the others behind them, I politely ask them to stop. They are usually pretty good about it.

Connie watches kids tubing after school from Whitney’s Way. Photo provided by Charles Sneiderman.

Liberty, and the other regional areas, have a huge array of special events, and it is important to always check them out. During the first weekend of March, Liberty will host the Wounded Warriors Weekend. Liberty has one of the more advanced adaptive ski programs in the nearby areas, and it continues to grow. Eventually, all resort areas will have these programs. As the military works to improve out-patient care for the Veterans at Walter Reed, Bethesda Medical, and other facilities, they may be encouraged to help with disabled ski and board programs as well. Those of you athletes with connections in the right places might drop a hint here and there.

Whatever you do, I hope you can get out and enjoy. For us, it does not get much better than it did on that quiet, sunny, warm Wednesday!

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About Connie Lawn

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

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Reader Comments

Andy
February 26, 2007
Liberty is where it all began for me & many others...Memories! There were no signs in my day & it was the norm to have a flask of whiskey to keep you numb from the cold during the after work/School nite sessions. This led to out of control skiing with me thinking that getting the wind knocked out of you & getting all banged up was just part of skiing! Now in my mid 40's I'm relieved to find out that I can sometimes make it thru a whole season without a bad fall...Ski In Control!!!
Jim
February 26, 2007
Man, I remember the days of skiing with a flask (or bota bag) as well!! Heck, for a while there, a company was marketing the "fanny flask" that was a fanny pack that had a built in flask complete with spout on the outside. Having survived that time period (although it did once involve a hospital stay and some pretty serious injuries), I'm glad to see how skiing has evolved into a less risky endeavor (or did I simply grow up?!).

Great article Connie!
Connie Lawn
February 27, 2007
Thanks Andy and Jim - I agree with you, and am all for safety. At the same time, it is not bad for adults to pop into the tavern for a few sips, if it will help relax you and keep you warm. When I lived in France, it was customary to bury a bottle of fine wine in the snow, and take sips between runs.
Everything in moderation. Laissez les bonnes temps rollent! Yours, Connie

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