Now that Big Sky is officially the biggest resort in the US, there's more than enough terrain for a week's worth of skiing. I have tried to get to every part of the resort, and after three visits, I've still missed significant chunks of the resort. Sometimes on purpose. When they say steep, they mean it. And when they say double black diamond, they really mean it. The secret stash of Big Sky is their roster of glades on Andesite. I thought I had figured them out and was quite confident that I could make my way through these hidden gems without overly challenging my capabilities on skis. I went through the gate by the sign with the 2 diamonds and floated down a vast meadow for a mile or so (it seemed). Nothing very difficult. For a glade, it didn't even have many trees. All of a suddent, the two other skiers on this enormous tract disappeared. As I came closer, I found out why -- the slope took a sudden turn downwards. Now I was alone with no way to turn back and a steep trail the likes of which I had little experience with. The snow was deep and the slope headed downwards at about a 35 degree angle for several hundred yards. This would not be considered expert by Big Sky standards, but it was enough to make me sweat bullets as I remembered to lean forward, not back. Since I managed to link turns down to the cat trail and survive the experience, I have to say it was a thrilling experience to be confronted with a challenge and succeed. Everywhere you go at Big Sky there are challenges to overcome -- for beginners through experts. And the instructors are top-notch. All credit to Ursula Howland, whose mantras I repeated as I made my way down the slope that day.