While there are many great things about going to business school, the trips during the breaks are definitely close to the top of the list. I knew I wanted to do a Random Walk when I started at Booth, but I didn’t realize that there were so many other opportunities to explore and have fun during business school. Traveling is practically an unofficial curriculum requirement at Booth
Every year during winter break, the Ski & Snowbard Club organizes a trip to a world class ski resort. Any Booth student can sign up and partners are always invited. My wife and I signed up for this year’s trip, and joined over 350 other Boothies in Vail, Colorado. I haven’t been on many ski trips, but this one was particularly amazing! From the outdoor Wallflowers concert in Vail Village, to the themed nightly parties (half of my suitcase was snowboarding gear, and the rest was costumes), to the five days of fresh powder, my last “winter break” before I join the working world (which apparently does not get three weeks off during the holidays) “Booth Ski Camp” was definitely a trip to remember.
The lodge itself set the tone. Replete with warm cookies and hot apple cider, there was always a wide selection of free snacks and fruit in the marble and wood covered lobby. Our condo had a beautiful view of the mountain and stream below, and we were less than 50 steps from the Gondola that took us to the top of the mountain. My wife and I joked that we got a taste of what it feels like to be rich for a week.
Our first day on the mountain was epic! It snowed huge, fluffy snowflakes all day and our condo of seven skied as a group, working our way from run to run and lift to lift across the three faces and 5,289 acres of skiable mountain. We did close to 20 runs our first day, and it was absolutely spectacular. The snow was perfect, the lifts were fast, and the mountain seemed almost empty because there was not a single line at any of the lifts. The first nightly costume party carried the theme of “Summertime Fun.” There was no shortage of board shorts, bathing suits, Hawaiian shirts, blow-up pool toys, beach balls and glow sticks on the dance floor. Although my decision to wear sandals resulted in me slipping and falling on the ice like a cartoon character, partying with other Boothies in summer clothes was a great way to end the day.
The next four days and nights were equally amazing. It snowed over two feet during our week in Vail. It was a new and exhilarating experience snowboarding in such deep powder. My wife and I were even able to ski for five days instead of the original four that we had signed up for. However, for as much fun as we had on the mountain, we had an even better time with our friends off the mountain. Four more nights of themed parties—Boots N’ Brews, Broomball Costume, Ugly Holiday, and Choose Your Decade costumes included—gave us a chance to hang out with first years and other second years. Our condo group, which included me, my wife, and a few friends from my Random Walk trip to Chile, cooked and ate together for breakfast and dinner, and sometimes for lunch since we could practically ski into our condo. It was a great time to hang out, catch up and spend some quality time with some of my best friends at Booth.
Though not exactly cheap, the ski trip was worth every penny. It would be great to recreate this experience every year (perhaps with fewer glow sticks, blowup pool toys, and green tights) but I know it might not be possible when my friends and I are all working again. That’s why I can’t recommend enough that you take advantage of the opportunities to travel while you’re in business school and, as Professor Erik Hurst would say, it gives you the opportunity to “smooth out your spending.”