Tell me about places you’ve been along the route I’ve got planned! Favorite haunts, fav ski resorts, bars, runs, shops, highways and byways! I’m always looking for the next and best, and you all have probably been there, done that. The New Year is upon us! And despite a lingering pandemic, uncertain economic times, a new grandbaby who rang in the year, and life in general, I am determined to take on another Solo Ski Sojourn.
The route will be like SSS1, staying state-side, looping from Montana to Wyoming, Idaho, California, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico. Here’s the Grand Plan.
Assuming I get my truck loaded but not overloaded, I’m heading West on I-94 and not stopping until I get to Hardin, Montana, my hometown. I’ll visit family, and then possibly ski Red Lodge. From there, I’m going to forego Big Sky for the second or third season to instead do some research/writing work at Heart Mountain, Wy, outside of Powell and Cody. Heart Mountain was one of ten concentration camps that the Japanese Americans were interned during WW2.
From Heart Mountain I may make a quick stop at Jackson Hole on the east side of the Grand Tetons before resting in Driggs, Idaho and skiing Grand Targhee for a few days. It’s only about an hour to Jackson Hole from Driggs, so I may sneak a peak back at Jackson during my stay.
I need to be at Lake Tahoe by mid-January, so I’ll leave Driggs and make a quick stop at Minidoka National Historic Site, another Japanese American camp. I’ve been there once before on my way to Sun Valley. The new visitor’s center should be open now, so I look forward to learning more.
Then it’s a long, long drive to Tahoe, but the drive is worth it! I’ll be staying at the Worldmark on Tramway Drive, but I’m not planning on skiing Heavenly, even though you can see it from the resort. I’m skiing the Ikon Pass, and Heavenly isn’t on it. The plan is to spend time at the newly renamed Palisades (the old Squaw/Alpine Meadows), and Homewood Mountain (where my ski buddy Tom took his epic crash two years ago). Palisades has a few great views of Lake Tahoe, but Homewood is so close to the lake, a person feels as though you can ski right into the water.
We really don’t have enough hours or days at Tahoe before we’re going to the Sierras to ski Bear Mountain and China Peak. I’m hoping to meet up with my college roommate who lives in Fresno. Wouldn’t that be grand?? Just south of Fresno is the location of the assembly center my parents were first confined—Tulare Race Track. If my wheels have time and inclination, that would be a good site to see.
In between Tahoe and the Sierras I’m going to see my sister in Elk Grove south of Sacramento. I have more relatives in California that I’d love to visit—Morro Bay, Redondo Beach—but I am a woman on a mission, and the next stop will be back to the Rockies and the Wasatch Range in Utah.
Of course there’s another internment camp on the way, one that I’ve never been to—Topaz, Utah. Since it would make sense to take the southern route back to Utah, through St. George, I might do that. St. George is where my late husband Scot and I hiked with two best friends from Stanford, and some of my last memories of Scot live in those red rocks.
I’m staying at the Worldmark Midway in Heber City for a week. I’ve got a pass to Deer Valley and hope to hit Brighton and Solitude in the Big Cottonwood Canyon. And maybe Alta and Snowbird in the Little Cottonwood. Too many resorts! Not enough time! And I have a new Stanford friend who skis Sundance, a place I have never been, so…choices, choices!
From Utah I am headed back to Driggs to spend some more time with my buddy Bill and do more skiing at Grand Targhee. I’ve got a week blocked out for that, then it’s off to join a group of eight girlfriends who are meeting me at Steamboat Springs! How fun will that be? We’re staying at the Worldmark Steamboat Springs for a spell, and then I’m going to the Worldmark in Granby, 30 miles from Winter Park. I haven’t skied Winter Park since I was in my 20’s!!
From Winter Park I am hoping to spend a few days in Summit County with one of the girls, and then I’m swinging by Aspen and Vail to ski and spend time with shirt-tail relatives.
My last push will be to Taos, New Mexico for a couple weeks at the Worldmark Taos. A week of Skiing and a week of maybe just hanging out in one of the coolest towns in the Southwest.
Then It’s the drive back to Minnesota, with a stop in eastern Colorado at the Amache concentration
camp. A couple years ago I took this route home and drove right by Amache, not even knowing it was there. This time I am going to be more intentional in my quest to visit camps.
So much to see, so little time. So long as my credit cards and knees hold up, I am good to go.
Tell me about your experiences along this route! Favorite runs, fav restaurants, fav anything. I’m all about new and different, and also the old and familiar. I’ll be blogging, TikTok-ing, IG Reeling along the way.
If you can’t join ‘em, live vicariously!
I can’t wait to start!