April 2nd 15:00 – We arrived in Bozeman Montana earlier than scheduled which was a nice surprise. The spacious yet quaint wooden and hunter decorated airport greeted us warmly with a crackling fire in the fireplace and a bronze bear statue. We grabbed our gear and started trying to figure out how on earth we were going to get to Big Sky! There were loads of people scurrying around the airport at 11pm at night. We tried asking the transfer vans if they had room, “not really” they said. We couldn’t find a public bus which, at least according to the website, should run regularly til midnight. There were a large group of French junior riders also on the same flight that we were on but they said they were spending the night in Bozeman before continuing on the next day to Big Sky. I overheard a guy asking the transfer driver if he could follow in the rental. I asked if he had extra room for us and it turned out he was happy to have the company so we were set. Well, except for the fact that there was no chance of getting our gear into that little midsized sedan! We begged the transfer guys enough to have them take our bags while we followed and by midnight we were on the road. The guys dozed on and off in the back and the driver Patrick and I chatted the whole way to Big Sky making the drive short and painless. We got our keys fast and most importantly for me, a package. I had my new snowboard boots mailed to the hotel. Finally new boots! How exciting!! After having to literally duct tape my old boots onto my feet after breaking the lacing system, this will be a real treat! Our room is super spacious and has everything we could need to spend a week. We settled in a little and around 2am finally went to bed. Would have been really nice if I could have actually slept but just wasn’t going to happen last night I guess. Spent the whole night awake, relaxed, but awake.
April 3rd: I was really concerned about how I would hold up today to be honest although thanks to snow and fog, we are playing it low key and checking out the area a little. I had a real American breakfast with eggs and pancakes, almost exploded from overeating! We got our accreditation for getting the discount lift tickets but will have to go back tomorrow to do the real contest accreditation. I had to pick up a screw for my bindings since the TSA managed to lose one. We had a bite to eat at Whiskey Jacks and did a little window shopping in a souvenir shop before returning to the hotel to check out the pool, hot tub and fitness room. Tonight we’re hoping to head into town and meet up with a local who is a friend of a friend of mine from Jackson Hole. It will be really cool to have a local to get some tips from.
Update: following the pool/hottub/fitness session I proceeded to take a “nap” …. Early night to bed tonight: more about Man-tana tomorrow!