Kitty Calhoun navigating the doldrums, skiing at Red Mountain Pass Colorado

Kitty Calhoun, Co-owner Chicks Climbing and Skiing, can’t quit laughing. Chicks Intro to Backcountry Skiing and Spitboarding Hut Trip, Red Mountain Pass, Colorado. ©Kitty Calhoun Collection

For days, I was in the Doldrums

For no particular reason, I felt listless.

Everything was a chore. I had to force myself to stay on task and be productive.

Yoga and the climbing gym helped, a bit, but I had no motivation to work on the computer.

I wasn’t even excited to go skiing with Angela, but I figured I should.

As we drove up the winding road towards Red Mountain Pass, we craned our necks and mused in awe at the large avalanche crowns on either side of the valley.  We imagined the avalanches starting, collecting speed, growing, and then destroying everything in their path.

Naturally occurring slides are most likely within 24 hours of the last storm.

I’ve witnessed enough to know that within minutes there’s calm and stillness again. It’s as if nothing ever happened.

We donned our skis, checked our beacons, and started skinning up a track through the trees.

I became focused on my breathing. Rhythmic, cold, white breaths formed frost on my hair.

It was snowing, and wind built drifts and further caked the heavy tree branches.

I became mesmerized with the cadence of my breath, the crystal beauty. I lost track of time.

Eventually, we arrived at a bench in a cirque near tree line and prepared for our descent.

Skiing down, I felt weightless in the deep, untracked powder.

We swept over rolling hills and snaked our way through large, evergreen trees.

I heard Angela laughing as she disappeared over a mound.

I followed, yelling,  “Yee-Haaa!”

Today, I feel like I can tackle anything, uplifted by of the power of the outdoors, the majesty of the mountains, and the wonder of snow.

I agree with Florence Williams, author of “The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative.”

The best prescription for the doldrums yet—go outside!