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Colorado’s Adaptive Skiing for the Blind

By Penn Street

Colorado has a number of Adaptive Ski Programs for people who are blind and or have low vision just like me. Most of the programs are fueled by volunteers.

The first time I clicked into a pair of skis in college during an Adaptive Ski Clinic in Winter Park I was hooked.

Woman skiing down a slope, with a vest that says :blind skiier:

Skiing is freedom to me. I am not tethered to a cane or a guide dog. I don’t have to listen for traffic or focus on adapting to a world that fights me every step of the way.

When I click into my skis I can take a deep breath and every muscle relaxes. I follow my guide onto the chair lift and as soon as my skis hit the snow at the top I can fly. With very little instruction from my guide I drop off the lip of the run and the snow beneath me tells me everything I need to know. When I plant my downhill pole it tells me how steep the pitch of the mountain is. The sound my skis make whispers up through my legs and tells me the conditions of the blanket of white that surrounds me. The freezing fresh Colorado air fills my lungs with pure happiness and renews my soul. I hold my head high and I let myself fly.

Two skiers wearing orange vests on a slope with mountain range in the background

In March of 2023 I had the honor of skiing with the group, Audio Trekkers, in Vail with the support of Foresight Ski Guides. Five blind and low vision skiers stood on the lip of the run together and together we flew. We experienced freedom from the tethers together.

Group of people posing for a photo, all wearing orange vests and ski gear.

Thank you to the Lions who support the Colorado Adaptive Ski Programs like Foresight Ski Guides and the Audio Trekkers from Aftersight. Without your support we could not continue to the work of enriching the lives of Coloradoans who are living their best lives with vision loss. For more information on how to support these incredible programs contact me.

Penn Street (She/her)
Development and Outreach Director at Aftersight
Vision Chair at Loveland Downtown Lions
p: 303-786-7777 ext. 4104
m: 720-370-8625
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