(Originally posted last year, this article is back by popular demand. And let’s face it, we could all use the reminder: Kim)
Recently, while standing at the bottom of T-Bowl on Speed Control, a yound girl dressed in a one piece pink snowsuit stopped to ask if I had any dog cards. "Sure," I said. "But first you have to tell me one of the skier responsibility codes."
She looked at me blankly.
"You know," I continued. "One of the safety rules."
She looked at her father knowingly.
I figured they must have rehearsxed on the chairlift and she was about to say something like watch for others when merging onto a trail, or don’t go under rope lines or at the very least, always stay in control.
Instead she looked straight at me and said, "Never, ever, ever eat yellow snow."
I had to admit, she had a point. Which brings me to my issue. Yesterday I hiked the King and at risk of sounding incredibly pet peevish, I’ll just go ahead and say it. There were no less than ten patches of yellow snow. I mean come on people. Perhaps it is some kind of Kilgore Was Here mentality that comes over these guys when standing atop a spendid peak with a pristine view of Mt. Rainier (and yes I suspect that most of the culprits are, in fact, men). Perhaps it replaces the flag that one could plant at the top of a more formidable peak. Or maybe, as I expected the pink suited girl to say, it is an issue of staying in control.
I don’t know. But I do have this one plea: please take if off the trail. Isn’t that what bushes and trees are for? How about this: Just don’t make it visible. Walk three steps off the trail and go there. Better yet, stomp a hole in the snow, pee into it and cover it back up. And remember, always stay in control.