You know how sometimes you think back on something and remember it being way more awesome that it really was? This is kind of like that, but replace ‘awesome’ with ‘scary’. And it was definitely that scary.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. We’re jumping back in time a ways now, to when I was studying abroad in New Zealand for a semester of college. I was there for our fall semester, which is winter and spring in New Zealand, and a few of us decided to go skiing. It hadn’t even occurred to me that there might be skiing in New Zealand before someone else suggested it (in coastal Dunedin, where we lived, a dusting of snow pretty much shut down the whole town). But there is and it looked awesome and as with most random adventures, I was gung-ho to do it.
We drove out to Wanaka, rented skis, and took the very intense road up to Treble Cone. There were quite a few roads we drove along in New Zealand that were pretty sketchy, and this ranked near the top. Stewie the Car was a total champ, though, and to top it off the early morning views looked like paintings.
So we got to the top, totally jazzed that our car made it up, geared up, and caught a lift. We gasped at the view, started on down the hill… and honestly, I freaked. The run was basically a series of switchbacks cut into the hill. So my brain was going ‘Gah! Cliff! Warning! Alert!’ literally the whole way down. No trees, no wide and forgiving paths for me to make big, slow turns and get reacclimated to all those movements that add up to skiing.
Meanwhile, tiny little kids are zipping past me (cackling, I’m sure) and going straight off the edges of the less steep cliffs to get to the next switchback. Punks.
I think of myself as pretty ok skier in general, so my ego was getting bruised in ways I’d never experienced before. Sure, sometimes I get freaked and can’t make left turns for a run or two… but I always get back in the groove. Nope, not here. I’m pretty sure I snow-plowed my skis just about all day long.
I wasn’t up for stopping to take photos at the most dramatic points, but these give the gist:
Even still, I would go back in a heartbeat. Why? Uh, one: it would mean I was in New Zealand (could probably just stop there, really). But also, it was so ridiculously beautiful. We saw an awful lot of impressive landscape views in New Zealand, but no where else on my trip did I encounter anything quite like this.
Do you have any terrifying experience you’d endure again just to re-experience some small bit of awesomeness? Been to Treble Cone and want to rag on my lackluster ski skills? 😉 Share in the comments below!