At Monarch Mountain and the Upper Arkansas Valley, spring is a conflicted time for those who inhabit the Continental Divide ski and snowboard area – either on a daily, weekly or seasonal basis.
Yes, the warm weather and full rivers are welcome after a long winter of storms and icy roads. Most turn attention to the rafting and kayaking on the Arkansas River as a way to cure the summertime blues, but it means no more snorkel-deep powder, spine-pounding moguls or snowcat rides into the backcountry for nearly eight months.
So, Monarch management tries to make the transition from winter to summer easier with the famed Kayaks on Snow event on Saturday, April 7. For a $10 entry fee, participants jump in a small kayak, take a double-ended paddle and attempt to negotiate a “boater-cross” course on the beginner slope at the base of the mountain. The course features berms and bumps and a finish in an icy pond.
Registration is between 9 and 10 a.m at the Guest Service Desk. Heats begin at 10 a.m and the finals go off at 2 p.m. Awards are presented at 3 p.m. All competitors get a t-shirt for their efforts. Call 888-996-7669 or click here.
And while at Monarch, check out the season-ending deals in the ski shop on helmets, hoodies, outerwear, glove and goggles. For a look at the deals, click here.