Readers' Thoughts

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SKI Magazine readers share their thoughts concerning the tragedies that took place on Sept. 11, and whether their travel plans have been affected.

Dear Editors,
Yes, our ski plans have been altered. We had already put a deposit for a week in Zermatt Switzerland four star hotel and I have worked just about every Saturday to do this and after this incident it changes everything. The fact that our government is issuing a worldwide travel advisory and with everythin that is going on, I don't think it's the right time to leave the USA.

We have already skied Italy, France and Switzerland just about every year, so we are heartbroken. I don't want to change my life for this idiot but I don't want to be caught in the wrong place at the wrong time and that is the dilemma. Do you fly and get over to Europe and find out that just because you are American you are a target? We just want to ski!

We have a $400 deposit down and according to Lunn Poly in the UK, they do not refund any money that is due to cancellation to terroism. So on one hand you pay $1600 plus airfare to London and you may not even be able to get to your destination if air traffic is delayed. The travel agencies are not responsible for these kinds of problems.

Please let your readers know to look very carefully at the conditions and terms. I read it but in July when I booked it, I never thought it would apply. And cancellation insurance does not cover your deposit for these situations.

At this point we just decided to see if we can transfer the money to the next ski season and if not, we each eat $200 and be thankful that we didn't pay everything in advance.

We live in southern California and we can drive and still ski in a beautiful place. So if push comes to shove, we are going to go to Telluride and Purgatory, Colorado.

Thanks for letting me tell you my frustration with all of this and think snow!
Kandra Longo

Dear Editors,
We are going to Lake Louise in January. Our tickets were purchased prior to the WTC/Pentagon tragedy. I'm more concerned with flight times and delays than with safety concerns.

Amish Ski and Snowboard Squad

Dear Editors,
My ski plans will not be affected much at all. I live in Washington state, only about 3.5 hrs south of Whistler, B.C., THE NUMBER ONE SKI RESORT IN NORTH AMERICA in my opinion. The border crossing will probably take longer but that is just fine and both countries' freedom is worth a little extra time in line. I don't think most hardcore skiers will be affected too much by the tragedies - because they are going to do whatever it takes to go skiing - including longer airport security lines and delays. We will never forget the tragedies but we must get on with our lives and enjoy our freedoms while we can. God Bless America and our Allies.

Dwight Holmes

Dear Editors,
The recent events in both New York City and Washington D.C. will more than likely have very little affect on my winter ski trip plans. I am a 25 year-old college student (2nd attempt at college) and the events will have very little affect on my plans. This is true for the simple fact that the only major trip I plan to take this year is a 3-4 day trip to Vermont (probably Jay Peak) with my college ski and snowboard club. Since my school, Slippery Rock University, is located in western PA, I doubt that the new regulations and safety measures (long over due, in my book) will not concern my ski club's intentions of travelling to VT for the simple reason that we travel by bus. In ending I just want to say "HELL NO" the recent tragedies and there implications on the airline and travel industry will have little effect on my upcoming winter ski/snowboarding vacation.

Anonymous

Good Evening,
I was in Adelaide, Australia on the tragic day of Sept. 11, 2001. Fortunately, I was able to return to the States and didn't lose anyone close to me. But before arriving in Australia, I d the absolute pleasure of skiing for the very first time at Mt. Hutt, New Zealand in the first week of September. Goodness, why did I wait all these years to ski? But I feel very fortunate that I was able to discover this wonderful sport. I am HOOKED!!!

I had planned a trip to Jackson Hole, Wyo., for Mardi Gras week February 2002. Now that I've gotten the snow buzz, there isn't ANYTHING that will keep me from going to Wyoming next February. I would hope that all Americans will rebound from this tragedy and carry on with their lives. We MUST get back in the air to help keep this economy going. If not, then the terrorists have won. I feel that skiers are a resilient, hardy culture and I'm sure that nothing will keep the majority of them away from kissing the mountain air!!!

BRING ON JACKSON HOLE!!!

Warmest Regards,
Michelle De Lima
Metairie, Louisiana

Hello -
We have definitely changed our winter vacation plans due to the recenttragedies. We are a family of four, two children ages 8 and 6, that love to ski. We have taken summer beach vacations, winter island vacations, ski vacations, and European travel vacations. If you asked my children what type of vacation they would like to take, they would answer without hesitation a ski vacation. We live in New England and had researched ski vacations out west and in Europe and were in the process of making a final decision when the events of Sept 11, unfolded. Much to our disappointment, we have made the decision to remain in New England until we fully understand the US response to this crisis. Are we safer here, who knows? But none of us want to get "stuck" away from home if another crisis should occur. The only other alternative that we may consider is Mont. Tremblant, due to its proximity to New England we are able to drive there. It offers the European flavor the adults crave and terrain the family can enjoy together - but its cold up there!

Lisa Allocca

Dear Editors,
I work(ed) in the north tower. I was at ground zero and saw the first plane go in. Stop me from skiing? No way! I'm also an avid mountain biker and surfer. The first thing I did when I got home (after making sure my family knew I was alright) was to stop at my local bike shop. Didn't want them to think I was dead and cancel the order I had for a new downhill wheel and tire.

The next day I stopped into my local ski shop. Had to let them know I was alive too.

I work for the Port Authority. I lost people I knew. I'm alive. I am not going to let a war ruin my life and I'm not some teenager who is more concerned with fun then responsibility. I'm 52, married with children and plenty of responsibilities. I spent 21 years in the military. We've been working 24/7 lately, but eventually things will return to "normal." If life does not go on, the terrorists will have won.

Bob Veit

Dear Editors,
We live in Fla. and have plans to ski Snowmass, Colo., in Jan. 2002, Whistler, B.C. in Feb. 2002, and Big Mountain, Mont., in March. There are 8-12 people going on each trip and we are 36-56 years old. Not one of us has thought about not going and we will not let the current events change our plans and take our freedom to enjoy travel and skiing. We will all fly, providing Frontier Airlines, Delta and United are still around.

Thanks,
Jim Safford

Dear Editors,
My plans were and still are to spend two weeks at the end of January skiing in the Salt Lake City, Utah area. I will be driving there as I had planned, and meeting two friends who are flying. Maybe the Olympics will make SLC a target for terrorist attacks, and maybe it won't. But Osama bin Moron can't keep this powderhound from roaming the country in search of freshies. Nothing will stop me from living the life I love, and I hope the rest of America's skiers feel the same way.

Paul

Dear Editors,
While my outlook on life has definitely been changed by the terrorist attacks recently, I am not changing any of my ski vacation plans. I have two trips planned - one to Breckenridge, Colo. and one to Banff, B.C. - and will be flying to both. I love the sport too much.

Lofton Spencer
Associate, Communications Group
GE Capital Commercial Finance
Alpharetta, GA 30004

Dear Editors,
Our plans for a ski trip have not changed. We have already reserved a house in Breckenridge, Colo., for the first week in March and will drive as originally planned. I would expect it to be less crowed since some foreign travelers may not make a trip to the U.S for a vacation.

Anonymous

Hi,
My intentions to go skiing this season have not changed. I am 39 and grew up in a family of skiers. I have been married for 12 years, and have a 9 year-old daughter who is learning to ski.

Within a few days of the tragedy, like most Americans, my thoughts were turned towards grief, the welfare of friends and family and the plight of the victims and their families. I was deeply affected and experienced what many have referred to as "a loss of innocence".

After about 2 weeks, I began to consider how the tragedy would affect the future of our country and alter the lifestyle of Americans. I realized that the act of skiing represents the ultimate expression of our freedom. To cancel or change plans to go skiing out of fear can only mean a victory for the terrorists. To go skiing is an act of defiance and a refusal to surrender to the forces of evil.

My plans for this season have not changed. My family will ski together over the Christmas holiday in New England. In February, I will fly toMontana and ski for ten days with my brother on the runs at Big Sky, Bridger Bowl, and Big Mountain - the biggest ski trip of my life, but not the last . . .

- TCB

Dear Editors,
The past 5 years in a row I have planned trips out West, and this year we are definitely rethinking our choices. We have been to Tahoe, Vail and Beaver Creek, Utah, and Whistler. Hands down Whistler is the top choice, but their lax security is a concern. I remember the year we went (1999-00 season), they had actually caught someone at the airport with bomb making materials and stuff. While in Vancouver, we had a great time but do remember seeing a high number of Middle Eastern people. Not that I am or any of my friends are racist, but I think now we are a little hesitant about our surroundings. There is nothing more nerve racking then being on a plane, because you do not have a choice in living or dying. It is that simple. Cars, trains and buses, to me, are a lot safer, although stats say otherwise.

We are not sure what we are going to do, but to say the least Whistler is last on the list. With their lax laws on borders, and "shady" security at the airport, I am a little nervous. I remember being in the airport when we were leaving, my friend and I messed up and forgot to check our bags. We literally walked all the way to the gate with our bags not knowing why we were the only ones. Well, a security guy saw it and went nuts. He would not let us leave, and would not let us touch our bags. A huge delay went on and they actually had to delay our plane because of it.

At the time, you really don't think anything of it. I honestly forgot all about it, until the tragedy on Sept.11. Now what really concerns me is that the Vancouver airport was suppose to be on "high alert" at the time, and we walked by at 6 in the morning with 2 full size ski bags and boot bags. We will have to see what happens...

Eric Grasso
Recruiter

Dear Editors,
I saw the towers fall from the window of my Manhattan office, and it was the worst thing I'd ever seen -- but hell no, I'm not canceling any ski trips because of those idiots!

Danny Klein

Dear Editors,
My plans have not been affected. We still plan to ski Austria this February. anged by the terrorist attacks recently, I am not changing any of my ski vacation plans. I have two trips planned - one to Breckenridge, Colo. and one to Banff, B.C. - and will be flying to both. I love the sport too much.

Lofton Spencer
Associate, Communications Group
GE Capital Commercial Finance
Alpharetta, GA 30004

Dear Editors,
Our plans for a ski trip have not changed. We have already reserved a house in Breckenridge, Colo., for the first week in March and will drive as originally planned. I would expect it to be less crowed since some foreign travelers may not make a trip to the U.S for a vacation.

Anonymous

Hi,
My intentions to go skiing this season have not changed. I am 39 and grew up in a family of skiers. I have been married for 12 years, and have a 9 year-old daughter who is learning to ski.

Within a few days of the tragedy, like most Americans, my thoughts were turned towards grief, the welfare of friends and family and the plight of the victims and their families. I was deeply affected and experienced what many have referred to as "a loss of innocence".

After about 2 weeks, I began to consider how the tragedy would affect the future of our country and alter the lifestyle of Americans. I realized that the act of skiing represents the ultimate expression of our freedom. To cancel or change plans to go skiing out of fear can only mean a victory for the terrorists. To go skiing is an act of defiance and a refusal to surrender to the forces of evil.

My plans for this season have not changed. My family will ski together over the Christmas holiday in New England. In February, I will fly toMontana and ski for ten days with my brother on the runs at Big Sky, Bridger Bowl, and Big Mountain - the biggest ski trip of my life, but not the last . . .

- TCB

Dear Editors,
The past 5 years in a row I have planned trips out West, and this year we are definitely rethinking our choices. We have been to Tahoe, Vail and Beaver Creek, Utah, and Whistler. Hands down Whistler is the top choice, but their lax security is a concern. I remember the year we went (1999-00 season), they had actually caught someone at the airport with bomb making materials and stuff. While in Vancouver, we had a great time but do remember seeing a high number of Middle Eastern people. Not that I am or any of my friends are racist, but I think now we are a little hesitant about our surroundings. There is nothing more nerve racking then being on a plane, because you do not have a choice in living or dying. It is that simple. Cars, trains and buses, to me, are a lot safer, although stats say otherwise.

We are not sure what we are going to do, but to say the least Whistler is last on the list. With their lax laws on borders, and "shady" security at the airport, I am a little nervous. I remember being in the airport when we were leaving, my friend and I messed up and forgot to check our bags. We literally walked all the way to the gate with our bags not knowing why we were the only ones. Well, a security guy saw it and went nuts. He would not let us leave, and would not let us touch our bags. A huge delay went on and they actually had to delay our plane because of it.

At the time, you really don't think anything of it. I honestly forgot all about it, until the tragedy on Sept.11. Now what really concerns me is that the Vancouver airport was suppose to be on "high alert" at the time, and we walked by at 6 in the morning with 2 full size ski bags and boot bags. We will have to see what happens...

Eric Grasso
Recruiter

Dear Editors,
I saw the towers fall from the window of my Manhattan office, and it was the worst thing I'd ever seen -- but hell no, I'm not canceling any ski trips because of those idiots!

Danny Klein

Dear Editors,
My plans have not been affected. We still plan to ski Austria this February. I will admit I'm wondering how nervous I'm going to be when the plane starts taxiing to the runway.

Anonymous

Dear Editors,
I don't plan any changes for this winter. I have never heard of a terrorist attack at a ski resort in New England.

Anonymous

Editor,
We are going to the Rockies with eight of our best skiing buddies. Welove to ski early and all (or most of the) day, dine early and ... crash.Those days of dancing in your ski boots are over. We're flying!

Jim

Hello from Meadville Pa.,
Our plans were to bus to Toronto and then fly to Fernie to ski and then return to Toronto and bus back to Meadville. So nothing has changed for us unless they cancel our flights.

F. J. Kiefer

Dear Editors,
It feels wrong in a way to be discussing ski trips considering the events that unfolded 2 weeks ago. Working in lower Manhattan, I know all too well the feelings of fear and frustration felt by the entire city. I was in my office went it happened and saw first hand something I hope to never witness again. However, trying to return to normalcy is something we all must do.

I do have 2 major trips planned for this winter: first to Courchevel, France in February and second, to Whistler in March. I will admit that I am extremely concerned about travelling overseas considering the United States (and allies) is gearing up for a full fledged and prolonged retaliatory strike. I'm going to discuss the issue with the other members of my group, but for security and safety issues that are obviously questionable, I may vote for moving that trip to a western U.S. resort. While skiing in France has been an exciting prospect, postponing that trip would seem like the wisest decision at this time; especially since we'll be returning to one of the major New York area airports.

As for Whistler, being closer to home and to the States, I feel confident that we'll still follow through with those plans; although any airline travel will be done with heightened anxiety on my part.

I'd like to see this impending conflict end quickly, but unfortunately, I do not believe that to be the case; and thus feel that international "pleasure" travel would not be in our best interests.

Thank very much and God bless,
Thomas Albano

Dear Editors,
The horror and tragedy of the World Trade Center attack will always be part of the American psyche. However, we are not going to let this change the wonderful lifestyle to which we have become accustomed. My husband and I will continue to take the ski trips that we planned and look forward to every year. This Christmas, we are already booked and ready to fly to Vermont for a 5-day trip. In late February or early March, we will again take our annual trip (flying) to a (yet to be decided, we're debating) Western ski resort. Since we live in Tennessee, Fla., we will also take (driving) several weekend trips to Sugar Mountain, NC to satisfy our snow cravings! We cannot let the acts of cowardly, religious zealots make us afraid to live our lives. We refuse to stick our heads in the sand and never leave our homes. We will LIVE!!!

Thanks,
Louise Stark

Dear Editors,
I have no intention of changing plans for an annual ski vacation.I don't know where it will be yet, but I definitely will fly. I have never had any intentions of going to Europe, but if the bargains get to be too good to ignore, I might be tempted.

Anonymousry. I will admit I'm wondering how nervous I'm going to be when the plane starts taxiing to the runway.

Anonymous

Dear Editors,
I don't plan any changes for this winter. I have never heard of a terrorist attack at a ski resort in New England.

Anonymous

Editor,
We are going to the Rockies with eight of our best skiing buddies. Welove to ski early and all (or most of the) day, dine early and ... crash.Those days of danciing in your ski boots are over. We're flying!

Jim

Hello from Meadville Pa.,
Our plans were to bus to Toronto and then fly to Fernie to ski and then return to Toronto and bus back to Meadville. So nothing has changed for us unless they cancel our flights.

F. J. Kiefer

Dear Editors,
It feels wrong in a way to be discussing ski trips considering the events that unfolded 2 weeks ago. Working in lower Manhattan, I know all too well the feelings of fear and frustration felt by the entire city. I was in my office went it happened and saw first hand something I hope to never witness again. However, trying to return to normalcy is something we all must do.

I do have 2 major trips planned for this winter: first to Courchevel, France in February and second, to Whistler in March. I will admit that I am extremely concerned about travelling overseas considering the United States (and allies) is gearing up for a full fledged and prolonged retaliatory strike. I'm going to discuss the issue with the other members of my group, but for security and safety issues that are obviously questionable, I may vote for moving that trip to a western U.S. resort. While skiing in France has been an exciting prospect, postponing that trip would seem like the wisest decision at this time; especially since we'll be returning to one of the major New York area airports.

As for Whistler, being closer to home and to the States, I feel confident that we'll still follow through with those plans; although any airline travel will be done with heightened anxiety on my part.

I'd like to see this impending conflict end quickly, but unfortunately, I do not believe that to be the case; and thus feel that international "pleasure" travel would not be in our best interests.

Thank very much and God bless,
Thomas Albano

Dear Editors,
The horror and tragedy of the World Trade Center attack will always be part of the American psyche. However, we are not going to let this change the wonderful lifestyle to which we have become accustomed. My husband and I will continue to take the ski trips that we planned and look forward to every year. This Christmas, we are already booked and ready to fly to Vermont for a 5-day trip. In late February or early March, we will again take our annual trip (flying) to a (yet to be decided, we're debating) Western ski resort. Since we live in Tennessee, Fla., we will also take (driving) several weekend trips to Sugar Mountain, NC to satisfy our snow cravings! We cannot let the acts of cowardly, religious zealots make us afraid to live our lives. We refuse to stick our heads in the sand and never leave our homes. We will LIVE!!!

Thanks,
Louise Stark

Dear Editors,
I have no intention of changing plans for an annual ski vacation.I don't know where it will be yet, but I definitely will fly. I have never had any intentions of going to Europe, but if the bargains get to be too good to ignore, I might be tempted.

Anonymous