16 May 2013
In Search of the Endless Winter
by Jessie Cassidy
Every autumn in the high alpine regions of the country the leaves begin to turn, the air becomes cooler, crisper, and snow eventually begins to coat the high peaks. For many in these mountainous regions this brings excitement as thoughts of the ensuing winter fill the heads of these winter enthusiasts. For a select few however frustration and disappointment are the feelings expressed rather than excitement. For these people winter is seen as a hindrance rather than a wonderful time of the year that many winter sports enthusiasts view it as. Known as Snowbirds, these types of people tend to spend the winter months in warmer regions of the country such as the sun belt. On the opposite end of the spectrum we see the reverse snowbirds if you will, those who seek endless winter.
Reverse Snowbirds are generally winter sports enthusiasts that seek endless winter by means of hiking hours for one run of skiing in the summer, or even moving to the Southern Hemisphere during our summer months. Come late April or early May most of us are content with barbequing and trading skis out for bikes. Meanwhile however, the reverse snowbirds are driving south to the Eastern Sierra’s to start the spring back country season. While we are drinking beers on the beach, these die hard skiers are hiking, often for hours, to ski just a few runs in the spring corn down on the east side.
Some of these reverse snowbirds even take it to the next level by moving to the Southern Hemisphere during our summer months. Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand are popular destinations among these winter enthusiasts. The Andes Mountain range in South America harbors high peaks and deep snow that keep these reverse snowbirds satisfied June through August.
While a majority of us are enjoying our favorite summer time activities such as SUP, biking, hiking and such, these select few are chasing endless winter season after season. Come October as the first snow begins to blanket the peaks in the Northern Hemisphere, most skiers are elated with joy as they have waited upwards of seven months to strap skis to their feet once again. Meanwhile these hardcore reverse snowbirds are returning from winter in the Southern Hemisphere only to have at it once again only ever increasing their ski day totals.