During a recent dinner conversation with friends, the topics of skiing and golf came up and soon the entire table was putting in their “two-cents worth” regarding which sport was more fun, more challenging, easier to learn, etc. etc.

Our conversation was energetic and lively and I thought I might share a few of the comments and insights right here in the Daily.

  • You can ski 18 different runs without ever changing skis—however, you need 14 clubs to play 18 holes—advantage skiing.
  • Both sports are played outdoors and under varying conditions, but few of us golf when the temperature drops below freezing, much less when it’s 10 below—advantage golf.
  • There’s no ranger on a ski hill telling you to ‘hurry up.’—advantage skiing
  • Ski equipment and clothing is more expensive than golf equipment and golf clothing—advantage golf.
  • The primary focus on golf is the score; in skiing, it’s having fun—advantage skiing.
  • Golf clothing and footwear is more comfortable than ski clothing and boots—once again, advantage golf.
  • You can ski whatever runs you choose and in any order you choose—advantage skiing.
  • We tend to lose a lot more golf balls than ski equipment—advantage skiing
  • Depending upon where you live, golf season tends to be a bit longer than ski season—advantage golf.
  • Both skiing and golf can consume the better part of a day, so there’s no advantage either way.

As you can see, each sport has its advantages and disadvantages, so perhaps a few quotes from the experts might clarify the matter.

On golf:

  1. “Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated; it satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect. It is at the same time rewarding and maddening – and it is without a doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented.”—Arnold Palmer.
  2. “If you really want to get better at golf, go back and take it up at a much earlier age”—Thomas Mulligan
  3. “The real reason the pro tells you to keep your head down is so you can’t see him laughing”—Phyllis Diller
  4. “Golf is played by twenty million mature American men whose wives think they are out having fun”—Joey Bishop
  5. “The most important shot in golf is the next one”—Ben Hogan
  6. “The four most unwelcome words a man will ever hear from a woman are “We need to talk;” Golf’s four most unwelcome words are “It’s still your shot.”—unknown
  7. “I have a tip that can take five strokes off anyone’s golf game.  It is called an eraser”—Arnold Palmer
  8. “This is a game of misses.  The guy who misses the best is going to win”—Ben Hogan
  9. “Of all the hazards, fear is the worst”—Sam Snead
  10. “Missing a short putt does not mean you have to hit your next drive out of bounds”—Henry Cotton
  11. “Baseball reveals character; golf exposes it.”—Ernie Banks
  12. “Golf is 20 percent talent and 80 percent management.”—Ben Hogan

On Skiing:

  1. “Skiing is a dance, and the mountain always leads”—Unknown
  2. Stretch pants—the garment that made skiing a spectator sport.”—Unknown
  3. “Gotta use your brain, it’s the most important part of your equipment.”—Kevin Andrews and Warren Miller.
  4. “When it comes to skiing there’s a difference between what you think it’s going to be like, what it’s really like, and what you tell your friends it was like.”—Unknown
  5. “The sensual caress of waist deep cold smoke….glory in skiing virgin snow, in being the first to mark the powder with the signature of their run.”—Time Cahill
  6. “There’s no waiting for friends on a powder day.”—Unknown
  7. “Snow: a form of precipitation that usually occurs three weeks prior to and the morning of your departure from your ski vacation.”—Unknown
  8. “Turn right, turn left, repeat as necessary.”—Unknown
  9. Corollary to #8—“Every other turn is left”—Unknown
  10. “The ski bum trades security for face shots, the future for the moment.  Considering how hollow the promise of a corporate career has become, who can say the ski bum is not the wiser investor in his or her youth?”—Unknown
  11.  “Powder snow skiing is not fun.  Its life fully lived; life lived in a blaze of reality.”—Dolores LaChapelle
  12. “Do your shopping at Safeway, not in a mogul field.”—Butch Mazzuca, ski instructor.

If you had to choose one or the other, which would you choose?  I suspect proficiency at each would dictate many answers, but from a personal perspective there are two primary reasons I would choose skiing.

First, regardless of how poorly I skied on any given day, I’ve never been tempted to throw my skis into Gore Creek and secondly, while a few true “golf shots” will bring me back to the course, I’ve skied on powder days that were absolutely “magical” and no golf shot has ever felt as good as making fresh tracks down Forever or Lost Boy or the Grand Review.

Quote of the Day: “There is no comparison”—Vail Resorts

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