Wednesday, April 1, 2009


This weekend I was not exactly at my sparkling best. For one, I was *supposed* to go backcountry skiing on Saturday. Then I bailed because of "winter storm warnings," etc. And because when I woke up in the middle of the night, rain was falling in Biblical proportions.

These are perfectly good excuses not to go outdoors. But I know myself better than that. I know that if I do not get out in the mountains at least once a week that my outlook on life gets extremely grim.

I secretly hoped everyone else would cancel. That weather would turn them around. That they would arrive at their destination and be so miserable that they gave up in despair.

But this was not the case. They all had fun! While I, on the other hand, stayed home and got increasingly agitated, getting everyone else (dog, boyfriend) increasingly agitated along with me so that a massive fight broke out by 8 p.m.

So I made a choice. The next day I blew off all other responsibilities and went skiing. The weather wasn’t much better. It was snowing the whole time. All the slopes were a big slab waiting to avalanche so we just skied along a road. But, Glory Halleleleujah, I got my exercise and my dose of UV rays and a few mountain views and I was golden.

I stayed toasty dry in my jaunty blue Marmot Oracle jacket (pictured above). I am one of the least gear-savvy outdoor freaks around but I do know this: if your jacket doesn't keep you dry, you're doomed.

This video from British company Webtogs actually taught me a lot about rain shells that I didn't know -- for example, that all these years I've been buying "membrane" jackets as opposed to "coated" jackets - and that Gore-tex is a type of membrane. The cute outdoorsy British dude mentions Berghaus jackets (a Euro brand) as an example of a good membrane jacket but I'll stick with my Marmot, thanks very much!

And I’ll be sure to get out it in next weekend, or else.