The long-standing ski town tradition of tallying your number of winter days on the mountain, and using said number as bragging fodder, is getting more complex (and fun) with the advent of new technology.
Local skiers and riders can now use the Aspen/Snowmass Live Pass app to track, not just days on the hill, but granular statistics like your amount of vertical, distances, speeds and more on their phones.
I recently upgraded to a big boy smartphone and have kept the new app running over the course of this young ski season.
The coolest feature is GPS tracking. I’ve simply logged into the user-friendly app as I’ve headed up the gondola. Throughout the day, you can review just how much gnar you’re shredding out there.
For example, on opening day on Aspen Mountain, the app tells me I took six runs, with a maximum speed of 60.3 km/h (that’s about 37.5 mph, I’m not sure why the thing’s on the metric system), and an average speed of 16.5 km/h (10.2 mph). It also tallies “moving time,” but appears to track all of your moving — not just schussing downhill — if you keep it running all day. So the number doesn’t mean much (mine was 96 minutes, 42 seconds on opening day).
The GPS also can show you a map of your ski day, displaying each of the runs you’ve taken from a Google Maps view. With only three lifts open on Ajax, the map has been pretty boring so far — but I imagine when the whole mountain is open and you’re hitting it from all sides, it’d be pretty cool to review.
The app saves your numbers and logs them by day, so over the season you can compare them and get some stats to back up your “best day ever” claims.
Live Pass also has up-to-date snow reports for all four mountains, including info on what runs and lifts are open, a daily weather report and live cameras from each mountain. The camera proved helpful last Sunday, when a stormy fog settled over town and I was trying to figure out just how bad visibility would be on Ajax before heading up (pretty bad, it turned out: a camera outside the Sundeck showed a total whiteout).
There’s also a photo feature on the app, where you can save all your season ski shots in an album.
My problem with these types of tracking apps in the past has been that they drained my battery to nothing. I tried using MyTracks a few summers ago, for instance, to track mountain bike rides, but it always shut down my phone within an hour. So far, the Live Pass hasn’t killed my battery after skiing with it over several hours.
And a big plus for broke ski bums: Live Pass is free. So, no excuses. Give it a shot.
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Aspen/Snowmass Live Pass