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1. Call in sick on a powder day.
Extra credit for using one of these excuses:

"I fell asleep in the tanning booth and was seriously burned over 96 percent of my body. It's imperative that I remain naked." (This will explain your skier's tan.)

"Okay, since you asked: It really hurts when I pee...."

"I don't know what it is. The doctors are saying it's an airborne Ebola variant.... Yes, I'm sneezing. Should I come in anyway?"

"The plate in my dog's head froze last night. Right now I'm holding him upside-down in lukewarm water with bendy straws in his nose so he can breathe."

"My great aunt from Vermont just had a nervous breakdown and is picking off squirrels with a .357 Magnum. I've got to get up there; I'm the only one who can talk her down."

2. Ski these classic runs
Corbet's Couloir, Jackson, WY
High Rustler, Alta, UT
Couloir Extreme, Blackcomb, B.C.
KT-22, Squaw Valley, CA
Goat, Stowe, VT
Kant-Mak-M, Telluride, CO

3. Ski runs just as good, but less well-known
Steep 'n' Deep, Monashees, B.C.
Pas de Chèvre, Chamonix, France
Big Couloir, Big Sky, MT
Cambodia, Red Mountain, B.C.
Red Square, Vail, CO
Skydive, Fernie, B.C.

4. Rent ski flicks in July

5. Do a heli.

6. Rack up 10,000 verts at a ski area with less than 500 vertical.

7. Be the first one into an untracked bowl as patrol drops the rope.

8. Give first tracks to someone else.

9. Put your boots on in August and walk around the yard.

10. Get countless face shots.

11. Tune your mom's skis.

12. Ride a T-bar on a snowboard to reaffirm your love of skiing.

13. Take a nonskiing friend skiing.

14. Ski naked.

15. Drive through a raging snowstorm on a lonely road at night to go skiing.

16. Know how to make a hot toddy.

17. Flirt with a lift op.

18. Hike for your turns.

Top 10 reasons why you should:
10. You didn't buy a lift ticket with a fine-print warning about skiing at your own risk.
9. Nobody is cell phoning his broker in the lift line.
8. Everybody you ski with has nice big thighs.
7. You can eat brie and burgundy al fresco for the price of a greasy burger in a crowded cafeteria.
6. Parts of your lungs get air for the first time in years.
5. It isn't nearly as disfiguring when you run into a tree going uphill.
4. If you take a big spill, nobody yells insults at you from the chair above.
3. Fun tickets in your wallet don't keep changing into lift tickets on your jacket.
2. After a while, you learn to really love the pain.
And the number-one reason why you should hike for your turns: 1.You get to ski flawless, untracked powder in solitude, at your own pace, without the rabid feeding frenzy of inbounds lift-served skiing.--John Rember

19. Go to France.
Ride two trams to the Aiguille du Midi, a huge rocky pinnacle at 12,604 feet on the legendary Mont Blanc. Then spend the day skiing the crevasse-strewn Vallée Blanche back down into Chamonix. Eat a jambon sandwich along the way.

20. Paint your face red, white, and blue.
Then go to a World Cup Downhill and scream your bloody head off.

21. Own a chainsaw.
Cut your own line through the woods. Name it. Ski it.

22. Ski under a full moon.

23. Ski at Aspen wearing camouflage pants, a fluorescent orange knit hat, and a hockey jersey.

24. Ski at Pine Knob, Michigan, wearing real fur.

25. Dance in your ski boots.

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