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Taking Care of the Better Half

Published online: Jan 15, 2014 White Out & Wide Open—The Blog Steve Janes
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White Out & Wide Open-The Blog

           Last week we were out riding after the big storm had blanketed the area with about a foot of dry mountain powder. We had spent most of the morning picking our way boondocking through trees where the snow had collected, making for one of the better powder riding days in a long time.

            On the way back out, as we picked up the groomed trail, we passed a young woman sitting patiently on her sled at the side of the trail. She had the body language of being bothered by her situation. Just sitting on her sled, she looked cold and bored.

Looking around, we noticed a man who was stuck chest deep in snow some 30 yards off the trail.

            Naturally, we spun around and helped him get out of his mess so the two could continue their ride. But as I pondered this scenario, I couldn't help but wonder how many women go riding with their husbands or boy friends out of an obligation or desire to spend quality time with them even tough the sport of snowmobiling may not be the woman's true passion.

            For men, snowmobiling is a passion. It's a manly activity where we can go out with the guys and "conquer" nature. For some, convincing our wives or girl friends to go with us is usually a challenge. Naturally, since we're so impassioned by our activity, we just assume the little woman would find it equally exhilarating.

            In some cases that is likely true. But way too often women agree to go riding with their man just because they believe it's their duty to "stand by your man?"

            And let's be real. How often is the little woman placed on an older snowmobile-perhaps one that was actually your old sled before you purchased the latest model, leaving this sled as a not-so-desirable backup snowmobile . or what we'd like to call "the wife's sled."

            So we take the little woman out, put her in winter clothes that have zero fashion appeal (and they make her look fat), and certainly aren't the state-of-the-art Klim gear that we wear; then we throw her on an old sled that rattles her teeth as she rumbles down the trail. We take her out on a rough trail, with her old sled bottoming out in the bottom of every bump, and encourage her to go faster in order to keep up. Once we're out in the snow, now we want to show her how fun things are by showing off our talents in busting powder . which usually gets us about 30 yards off the trail and stuck in chest deep powder.

            Do we really think she's going to have fun?

            Then we wonder why she seldom wants to go riding with us.

            Our logic for putting her in crappy gear and on a bad sled is: Why buy her a new sled or new snowmobile gear until after we find out whether she's cut out for snowmobiling?

            For those of you whose wife or girlfriend is still willing to at least fake enjoying to ride, count your blessings. If she loves you this much, don't be a jerk and abuse the good thing you have going. Don't buy yourself a new sled and let her have the old one . let her buy the new sled. Let her buy the great riding gear. Let her plan the trips according to where she wants to go and the types of terrain she wants to ride.

            If we want our women to be as passionate about the sport as we are, we had better start satisfying their needs and desires. And that will pay big dividends for us in the long run.

--SJ