Sunday, February 27, 2011

I am on a mission

Hitting a rocky patch, CL
The mission is to ski in as many places in the world as you can. All countries where there's natural or man-made snow. In every major ski destination in the world. In at least some of the smaller places. On mountains, on hills, indoor, in winter and summer, on piste and off piste, on powder, slush, crust, and, occasionally - frequently, as my ski repair shop would say - on rocks. Going up by ski lift, on foot, on skins, crampons, cats, cars, or helicopters.

Night skiing in Kuopio, FI

Why? Obviously because I love skiing, the feeling that you get from making rhythmic turns on a steep mountain face, the scenery, the physical challenge, and my great skier friends and family.

But not only that. First off, my doctors tell me that I need some exercise and that working 24/7 is not an option. The problem is, I would rather submit to waterboarding in Guantanamo Bay than endure an exercise session at an indoor gym. I need a more interesting form of exercise, preferably outdoors.  Secondly, my work requires a lot of travel, and, in addition to hating the hotel gyms I also hate spending my evenings and weekends in in bars, restaurants, or shopping malls. I need a healthier way to spend my free time.

Grass skiing in Treble Cone, NZ

So I have ended up spending a lot of my time skiing. My goal is to find some time for skiing every week and on every trip, be it a family vacation or a business trip, or if the destination is France, Netherlands, or Indonesia. This is a not a new thing, last season I skied in five different continents, for instance. But I'm still at the beginning, having skied in only a small fraction of all possible places.

This blog will cover the continuation of my search for new places to ski in. I hope the blog is interesting to those who also search for something fun to do on their travels, skiers who search for that special experience, dirtbag travelers searching for the affordable ski option, and round the world travelers who want to know where to go. And I'd love to get some feedback and ideas for where I should go next!

In the winter I hope to make a post every week or so, in the summer probably a bit less, except when I point my skis to the southern hemisphere or find a summer skiing area. But I also like to go climbing and biking, so I might write about those, too. In the coming months there will also be blog entries about:
  • Review of world's indoor ski destinations. Can you really enjoy it?
Skinning up Mount Ruapehu, NZ
  • World's skiable volcanoes. Want to ski to the crater of a live volcano? Wait for my report...
  • Dirtbag skier's guide to heliskiing. Taking the heli ride and not paying a fortune.
  • The truth about family ski destinations. How come there are only two places in the world where you can take a family that has both skiers and non-skiers?
  • Skier's guide to packing & airline travel.

Photo credits (c) 2010 Jari Arkko and Tero Kivinen.

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