This Friday’s Defiance Challenge a benefit for Sunlight ski patrol |

This Friday’s Defiance Challenge a benefit for Sunlight ski patrol

James Kellogg
Special to the Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

Sunlight Mountain Resort is hosting the second annual Defiance Challenge on Friday, March 1, which serves as a fundraiser for the Sunlight Volunteer Ski Patrol.

Are you tough enough to enter? Do you know anyone else who is up for a challenge?

According to Webster’s Dictionary, defiance is synonymous with a challenge. The most applicable definition of a challenge is an invitation to compete in a sport. From a literal standpoint, the Defiance Challenge is a double invitation to test your mettle. It’s a fitting name for a rigorous event that requires teams of two. That’s where the academics end and athleticism begins.

The Defiance Challenge is a test of legs and lungs. From 7 a.m. until 5 p.m., teams of two will ski or snowboard as many vertical feet of Sunlight Mountain’s extreme terrain as possible.

Primo and Segundo lifts will haul participants to the tops of 40 designated black diamond runs. It’s up to them to get down. Step into alpine or telemark skis or strap on a snowboard, it doesn’t matter. Just remember, it’s a 10-hour day on the steeps.

Participate in The Longevity Project

The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.

Participants in the Defiance Challenge will begin the day with a rousing Grand Prix start. Skis and snowboards will await 50 yards up the mountain. When the starting gun sounds at 7 a.m. sharp, they’ll sprint up the hill, fasten on the skis and boards, and rip off toward Segundo lift.

Skiers and boarders familiar with Sunlight will recognize the names of the runs. From the Segundo lift, expert terrain includes Showdown, Frying Pan Alley, and Casanova Glades. On the Primo Lift side of the mountain, The Heathen, Defiance, Zephyr and Perry’s Plunge are among those that await.

With a total drop of just over 2,000 vertical feet, Sunlight Mountain will dish out as much as participants are willing to take.

The Defiance Challenge is all about the vertical. Partners have to stay together as they knock off each run. The vertical feet are totaled for the team, not the individuals. Last year, the top team approached 100,000 feet.

The Defiance Challenge benefits the Sunlight Volunteer Ski Patrol. A portion of the proceeds will also go to the educational fund for the daughters of Mark Gage, a Loveland patroller who passed away last August.

Expert skiers and snowboarders, ages 6 and up are eligible to enter the Defiance Challenge. Team registration for Sunlight Season Pass holders is $100. Without a season pass, the cost to register a team is $150, which includes lift tickets for both team members. A dinner, awards ceremony and silent auction are scheduled for the end of the day in the lodge.

Visit upcoming-events to find registration forms and waivers. Contact event coordinator, Mike Baumli, at (970) 319-3158 if you need more information.

Sunlight Mountain’s expert terrain is calling you out. Are you ready to accept the challenge with defiance?

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