| Breakfast: ||BREAKFAST: At hotel.|
| Morning: ||Today we begin our "Ski the Summit" journey by heading in our private van transportation to Keystone. Keystone Resort has everything that makes a perfect Colorado vacation. Keystone consists of three mountains named Dercum Mountain, North Peak, the Outback, and 5 Bowls (Independence, Ericsson, Bergman, North and South Bowls) for skiing at every level. We will divide up into groups based on skiing ability, speed, and terrain preference. Each group will have a knowledgeable guide to show them the mountain, but participants are also free to ski independently if desired and meet up with the group later.
Depending on how many ski days you've gotten in so far this year, you might need a few reminders and tips to help you improve your skiing. A lot of people don't realize that your ski boots are the single most important piece of equipment you'll be using. You'll learn a lot more about ski equipment during the week, but one thing we'll help you with on the first day of the program is bending your knees and pushing your shins against the tongues of your boots. Your boots are what connect you to your skis, and this pressure on your boots is very important. We'll take time to learn and practice this technique and more.
(Annual Snowfall 230 inches/584 centimeters)
(Total Area 3,148 acres/1,274 hectares)
(Highest Elevation 12,408 feet/3,782 meters)
(Vertical Rise 3,128 feet/953 meters)
| Lunch: ||The groups will join and meet for lunch at a resort restaurant on the mountain.|
| Afternoon: ||Continue skiing Keystone after lunch; groups can be adjusted to experience skiing with different guides and participants.
We'll introduce the topic today of the "Mountain Pine Beetle" and the effect it has had on the health of Colorado forests. If you've been on a road trip through the mountains of Colorado recently you may have noticed a number of dead, or brown, pine trees. This isn't from a fire or old age, but a result of the devastating outbreak of mountain pine beetles in the Rocky Mountains. The mountain pine beetle will bore a hole into a pine tree, feed on the bark, lay eggs, and hibernate for the winter before moving on to new trees during the warmer summer months. The portion of the tree that the pine beetle feeds on destroys the flow of water and nutrients through the tree. It is thought that the effects of climate change have resulted in warmer winters giving pine beetles a higher probability of surviving. The lack of frequent forest fires is also thought to be a factor because the trees are old and susceptible to the beetle. The most recent outbreaks of the pine beetle have been much larger and more extreme than previous outbreaks and the destruction is obvious. We will take some time to find a good sample of trees to stop next to and show you the trace evidence that you can look for when you are looking to see if a particular tree has been affected by the beetle. The pine beetle is such an issue that the town of Frisco now has a festival each fall to educate the community. The first "Beetlefest" came about as a way to educate the community on the effect mountain pine beetles have had on the area's forests and wilderness areas. What started as an idea for creating awareness grew into a full blown day of fun and activities for the whole family each September.
The public ski shuttle runs frequently so participants can return to the hotel when they choose. We will offer one private van shuttle opportunity in the afternoon. Apres ski at hotel.|
| Afternoon: ||5:00 PM - We gather at the hotel for a late afternoon field trip to a local ski shop. Here we'll have a presentation on the latest technology in ski equipment and learn how this affects technique, followed by a question/answer session with the expert ski technician. We'll discuss skis, boots, bindings, helmets, and more!|
| Dinner: ||Explore historic downtown Frisco with dinner on your own to discover the dining of the town, or take one of the free shuttles to the surrounding towns.|