Fresh Powder and Fresh Cookies

18 06 2009

Published in the Winter 2009 Colorado Visitors Guide; by Claire Fisher

As a seven-year Colorado resident, I have done the ski shuffle many times: Waking up at 6am on a Saturday, grabbing coffee and bagel and trekking to the mountains, watching my car’s fresh tracks in the rearview mirror. But, this day we had gotten wind of a storm — and the promise of fresh powder — the night before, which prompted myself and a friend to skip work the next day, drive to Beaver Creek and rent a condo for the night.

Beaver Creek is not your typical ski resort. It’s like a mystical land out of a fairytale. It has heated walkways, escalators up to the base, moving walks between areas of the village, an unusually chipper staff and a man who plays a 10-foot horn year-round. This luxury means you’re “not exactly roughing it” (which happens to be the Beaver Creek Resort’s marketing slogan), but it does have some of the best bumps, shortest lift lines and steepest terrain in the central mountains. Nearly trumping all of that, however, are the free, fresh-baked cookies served at the bottom of the lift. It’s like Grandma’s house with an alpine backdrop.

The mountain is sprinkled with luxury cabins from which a lucky few can ski straight out onto the slopes. I was one of those fortunate people on this epic day, and I schussed directly to the first chair from my condo (actually, I took the moving walk). As I gazed at the slope beneath the lift and picked my route, I wondered what I’d be doing this fine Friday if I lived in any other state and concluded that whatever it was, it could never compare.

At the top of the Cinch Express lift, at the summit, my friend spotted something you only hear about in après-ski bars — an untouched run along the trees. For a weekend warrior, it is a bit shocking (and thrilling) to see a trail without any scars from previous skiers. We giddily slid over the morning powder, beckoning us like a smooth lake of foam from a Colorado beer. As we made our turns, letting out giggles of glee, we skied deeper and deeper into the woods.

Skiing along in my reverie, the mountain fell completely silent. Just then, it started to snow, and I could almost hear each snowflake hit its soft cushion. This is what the best ski days in Colorado are all about: an unspoiled run in the woods with good friends, a glorious powdery descent. Oh, and the promise of fresh cookies afterward. (download pdf with pretty pictures)

AARP the Magazine

18 06 2007

In the summer of 2005, I scored the highest regarded internship for Journalism students. The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) runs an annual internship program in NYC and DC. My mom’s sorority friend Gail Herrington, recommended that I work towards this one internship if I wanted to make it in the magazine business. (Gail is now the Editor in Chief at United’s Spirit Magazine).

So that’s what I did. Straight A’s until the day I got “the call” that I was accepted. “Which would be your top choice magazines?” they asked. I thought, maybe Playboy, or National Geo Travel, or even Smithsonian. But I got AARP.

It turned out to be one of the best professional experiences of my life. Not only did I get paid (well), I got to write and edit a lot. My summer’s project was “fixing” an 8,000 word story. Basically, I re-interviewed and rewrote the story that had not been up to our editors satisfaction. My name is on it, at the very end. But I know that this story was mine.

Ski Magazine

18 06 2007

In 2005-2006, I had a fabulous internship with Ski Magazine. Being an ambitious CU Boulder student (no seriously), I was chomping at the bit to get my name published in the coveted rag. I was studying Journalism at the time and was being groomed for the news room. But I said nay. I wanted the life that came with glossy print and color photos, and all the free ski gear.

I finally got my chance to prove that I had what it took when they assigned me to write an article for the Mountain Life Design section in the June 2006 issue. Ski_Magazine. So I didn’t get to write about the best powder ever, while trying out the seasons hottest women’s fat skis, but I did get published in a 450,000 circ. magazine that has sat on my grandfathers night stand since 1960.

Weaver Multimedia Group

17 06 2007

Weaver Multimedia Group is the publisher of official visitors guides for several major cities in the US. I worked there as an assistant editor in 2007. I wrote articles for the New York City, Dallas, Las Vegas and Los Angeles guides, copy edited listings and produced the Pasadena, California guide. I came out with some great articles and even better stories.