John Lawson, of Red Deer, puts on his snowboard at Canyon Ski Resort on Saturday afternoon. Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff

Central Alberta skiers, snowboarders thrilled for start of season

Central Alberta skiers and snowboarders are finally able to hit the slopes, as the season has officially begun at Canyon Ski Resort.

Colm Murphy, of Red Deer, was out on the hill with his three-year-old daughter Ava on Saturday, which was the resort’s opening day this season.

“It’s her first time skiing today, so we got some lessons for her. She was awesome, she was super pumped for this,” said Murphy.

Murphy has been skiing for about 20 years.

“I love the freedom of being outside and the speed. Skiing is a bit of a challenge, and I’m always up for a good challenge,” he said.

“I started skiing later on in life and my daughter, to be able to ski at three, is pretty exciting. She’ll be able to do this with her friends, and down the line, she can pass it on to her children.”

Tim Ursuliak, of Lacombe, has been skiing for about 20 years as well.

“I’m super pumped to be out here. It looked like we were going to have an earlier winter this year, and it kind of burned off, so I was a little nervous the start of the season wasn’t going to happen.

“But it’s always good to come out to Canyon. It’s close and it’s good to support local hills,” he said.

What does Ursuliak love about skiing?

“What’s not to love? You have the freedom to express yourself in a sport that really has no rules, which is kind of nice and appeals to me,” said Ursuliak.

With this being the first time out this year, Ursuliak said he had a bit of rust to shake off.

“I’m getting old, so I’m feeling it way more than I usually do. I’m 28, so hitting the jumps and the rails is not as comfortable as it used to be, but I’m still having a good time,” he said.

Kate Martin, of Sylvan Lake, and her family, which includes three children between two and seven, were at Canyon on opening day as well.

“The family time we have here is the best thing. We all love being outside and the fresh air. Everybody seems to have a need for speed in the family, too. Everybody likes to go fast,” said Martin.

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