Feb 16, 2018

The Cham-Pour Family Ski Trip, Part 2

We took a break from skiing on our third day in Steamboat to try out a little snow tubing.  Mr. Ray packed him helmet and it really came in handy...
This nice and serene shot of Corinne with the tube doesn't really capture the experience very accurately.  First of all, Corinne tubed once or twice and then refused to do it any more, which meant one adult had to stay with her the entire time; secondly, the tubing ranch didn't have the safest set-up as far as one of their runs basically ran through where riders needed to line up to access the lift, so with 4 kids who rarely pay attention our terror alert was elevated the entire time; and thirdly, Pawpaw concussed a gentleman whose tube had come to a stop mid-run as the man was trying to escape to safety.  All in all, it was an eventful outing for the family...
We survived and made it back to the base area where we took this group photo...
Then we were off to our sleigh ride dinner...
These photos are beautiful, but because of one of the kids being in the restroom or something, we did not take our family photo with the sleigh until after the ride, which resulted in it being grainy and dark...oh well...
Dinner was nice.  Have you ever had bison? It was a big part of the menu...
The next morning we were back on the slopes...


Until Stella had a little too much fun.   She was getting tired and took a wrong turn while skiing out in front of Damon and I on the way to lunch.  Damon caught up to her, but then I gave them bad directions on the cell phone which resulted in them having to ski a few more runs and eventually she had a pretty bad knee twist in some deep powder.  She did win a ride down from ski patrol, though...





 

The green team rides the lift...
Three little peas in a gondola...
A low-level one skier, a non-skier, and Cille, in that order...


Mountain coaster time...

Two thumbs up for family fun...



Somehow our photos are out of order and this was Corinne napping on the way to the tubing place...


Riding the tubing lift...








This is how Corinne ended most of our restaurant meals...
And this is the trek that we had to take to get back to the plane.  Not really sure why they couldn't pull it closer to the gate...
I promised a critique of the Backpacker trip in my last post, so here goes.  The Backpacker trip is great for someone who has never skied before, or someone who does not have the time or the know-how to book their own travel.  For us, it was not a great fit because we usually use points for flights and we also have Global Entry and TSA pre-check, which makes security at the airport a lot easier with the kids.  Since our flights were booked as a group we were not pre-checked, and I also think we would have selected different flights if we had booked them ourselves (obviously to avoid the 5 hour layover in Denver).  The condo was super nice, but we would have preferred something less luxurious but closer to the slopes.  We did not attend the mixers that Backpacker offered, so that might be fun for some folks, but we were really there to spend time with the family and friends that we came with, so that wasn't a big draw for us.  In closing, if you are planning a first time ski trip and need a service that makes it super-easy, check out Backpacker, but if you are a seasoned traveler with your own perks, go on your own.

Feb 15, 2018

The Cham-Pour Family Ski Trip, Part 1

We pronounce that "Shampoo" if you are wondering, and it is our combined family names, similar to a celebrity couple name like Brangelina, because we are cool like that, plus our friendship honestly has a lot more staying power than a celebrity couple, in my opinion.  The dads and kids in the Cham-Pour family love to ski, although the moms are lukewarm about it.  We decided to hit the slopes together and the Chambley's suggested one of their favorite ski resorts: Steamboat, Colorado.  We booked the Backpacker group trip, which I will review at the end of the posts, but I will let you know up front that it led to a couple of hiccups, and that's where this 12 passenger van comes in...
Our flight from Lafayette to Denver basically got canceled, resulting in us having to fly out of New Orleans and gifting us with a 5 hour layover in Denver.  With 6 children.  Instead of spending lots of time "entertaining ourselves," i.e., threatening the kids with imminent punishment if they didn't behave, in the airport, we decided to rent a van and have lunch and possibly bowl a little during our down time.  Unfortunately, after we got the van, drove to the restaurant, ate, and checked the time until take-off, bowling was out and we actually felt a little rushed heading back through security because the line was L-O-N-G.  So it was not our best plan, but nonetheless, it is what we did.  Eventually these crazy kids made it onto the next flight...  
And to the condo.  Beautiful, isn't it?
The next morning the big 3 were suited up and ready to hit the slopes!
Here's our group waiting to ride up the gondola the first day...
Here's our group plus Damon and Pawpaw.  Let's face it, Damon is always late and he gets it from Pawpaw.  Our kids are missing from the photo because they were already in ski school.  And Mawmaw and Corinne were still relaxing in the room since neither of them ski...
Perfect conditions...(That's sarcasm, for you non-skiers.  I HATE to ski when it is snowing!)
We survived day one and our kids were able to do one of their favorite things: hot tubbing with the parents!
See?

Corinne had a blast with Mawmaw.  We weren't really sure how into the snow she would be, due to her less than enthusiastic response to the Baton Rouge sneaux, but she loved it...

The weather conditions...


Our little snow angel...
Dad and Stella were ski buddies due to their advanced skill level...

Coco with snow on her eyelashes...
The Chambley guys...both are great skiers...
The Hecht family, who we are friends with from school and gymnastics, were also in Steamboat so we got to spend lots of time with them.  We were able to hashtag our dinners out together #HechtofaChamPourFamily.  Cute, huh?

Here's Corinne beating her snowman into submission...
I wish Live Photos worked on blogger.  Since they don't, I'll have to explain these two shots.  In the first, Cille is outdone because she has just been told that the lifts are closed for the day...
If this one were live, you would see that Cille quickly found the silver lining, by sticking her tongue out to eat some falling snowflakes.  I love this kid...
Riding up in the gondola...
The other gondola passengers...
Cille, Graham, and Stella...
Stella, Caroline, and Diana...

The green lovers...
Cille...
Cille and Caroline...
We even ran into school friends on the mountain!  The always stylish Bella Jay is even dolled up when she's a snow bunny...
Sweet Caroline...
Cille...

All tuckered out at the teepees...
We're not done!  More ski trip fun to come...