20 March 2017 — Winter is over, World Cup is wrapped up, but fortunately for us the lifts keep turning…big news of course is Mikaela Shiffrin claiming the FIS World Cup Women’s Overall title; she’s just the 5th American to hoist the big globe. As you can see in the photo above, doing so on close-to-home snow in Aspen CO was quite an emotional experience, and the US ski community couldn’t be prouder! We’ll do a complete recap on Wednesday…sorry to report that Rachel Dewey, 48, of Colorado Springs CO fell to her death this weekend while skiing on the Little Italy Couloir on Pike’s Peak. Now to be clear, this is a back country event, Pike’s Peak has no formal ski lifts or trails. Our thoughts are with her family, and her students; Dewey was a teacher in the Springs…and another tragedy comes to a close, the body of 57-year-old Steve Leavitt, missing since March 6th has been found at or near Mt. Hood Meadows. Searchers included Mountain Wave SAR, Hood River County Sheriff’s Office, Hood River Crag Rats, Portland Mountain Rescue, Deschutes County SAR, military personnel from the 304th Rescue Squadron and the 125th Special Tactics Squadron and Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Patrol. Conclusion is that Leavitt hit a tree and was subsequently buried by snowfalls…let’s wrap up today on a more positive note; “congratulations” and “job well done” to Gary DeFrange, stepping down from the helm of Winter Park Resort CO after more than 20 years. Interesting stat: DeFrange was just the third person to run Winter Park since it opened in 1939. It should also be noted that he has served at the National Sports Center for the Disabled for 38 years. We wish him a lot of well deserved happiness in retirement.