Night skiing brings perfect balance

by Colin McCarthy (age 15), February 2011


(Editor’s note: Members of the Racing Team were asked why they like night skiing. Here is one member’s answer.)


The love of skiing is exemplified by Friday skis: a perfect day to end with the perfect activity.

     To describe the perfect ski, I need to describe the day in question. A Friday undefined the day we get to throw off the chains of oppression that bind us to a too-small desk for 6 hours and end the day by staying in the robotics room. A brief time in the robotics room, with Mr. Edmonds giving me a hard time for once again ditching out to go skiing. I climb into the van, wondering why so few people once again choose to go up today. I smile as I sit down, starting up small conversations as I settle in with the team undefined laughing, smiling, just enjoying the company of my team skiers.

     Night skiing is the most beautiful thing in my life. It doesn’t matter where you are along the trail, it doesn’t matter how fast anyone else is going. It's just you and the sound of your heart. I ski along the trail, gliding effortlessly with every step, climb the hills, speed down the other side, never feeling tired. There is a particular spot, the highest one can get on the trails, where no matter what, it's beautiful. We hit the top, a short flat where around you, there is just the valleys, the lights of the chairlifts, and the stars shining.

     I stand, completely alone for the time being, as I catch my breath. I look up, as I am able to fully look around at the world around me to-night. The stars are out, shining brighter than ever seen from the city, overhead, illuminating the valleys and forests covered in snow around me. The wind, whistling around me, plays over each branch, each branch changing the pitch, each new tone creating the effect of the forest alive. From where I stand, I hear thousands of conversations, thou-sands of whispers back and forth, as the wind whips up the valleys. The clouds that I passed through now barely reach my feet, swirling around me. Over the valley, the same effect is replicated in the cloud cover, holes in the clouds let the moonlight shine through, striking and reflecting off the snow. It reminds me of a snake, slithering along as parts of the scales glimmer as they enter the sunlight.

     I stand on this ridge, the snow rippling around me, in perfect balance. My breathing is controlled, my internal temperature perfect, I am completely calm. The winds blow up from both sides of me, keeping me at perfect balance.

     That’s what I take from skiing. It allows me to gain that balance within myself, and at that moment, as the winds converge around me, I am at pure balance to the universe. And I smile, because I know, every time I go up skiing, I’m getting small parts of this pure perfection, and on those lucky Fridays, I gain it all.

     It’s the story of my life, the swells of the breeze, the balance of the world. That is why I love to ski: it achieves the happiness in one of its purest form, and all you have to do is spend a Friday on the mountain.

Spokane Nordic is committed to creating, developing and delivering programs to foster Nordic skiing
within the greater Spokane Community through efforts of organization, advocacy, and communication.

Spokane Nordic Ski Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

P.O. Box 501, Spokane, WA, 99210

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