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You’d go to the University of (fill in the blank), why?

It’s October. The foothills are draped with color. The kind of colors that folks apparently book bus trips to drive through Vermont to look at. I just have to raise my eyes to the horizon to take in a rainbow of yellow, bronze, magenta, peach and scarlet that promises the next change of season.

We’ve also had one tantalizing storm. Cold, rain, even blops of big, wet snowflakes hit the ground on the ‘benches.’ It sent everyone scuttling to pull out the fleece, sweaters, boots and rainwear. The peaks of the Wasatch are bravely holding onto the foot or so of snow that fell in that storm, despite the now balmy Indian summer weather.

It’s going to be 76 degrees this weekend. Bah, humbug.

My mind has already moved on to blessed winter.

Yes, it’s true. I love winter because we do winter differently in Utah. You don’t have to plan a weekend, fly across country or even drive five hours. You can check the weather at 6am, shower, eat a leisurely breakfast and be knee-deep when the lifts open. And although you don’t have to slide off rails or fly off cliffs to enjoy the stuff that the mountains pull out of the chilly winter air, these two video clips–of UofU students, BTW–give you an idea of the pure joy lying there in the white stuff, for the asking.

From the U, you don’t even need to drive. Just hop on the UTA bus that stops every morning at the Heritage Center. Less than an hour of iPod tunes (or a chapter of Economics) later, you’re at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon.

And to celebrate the end of finals week on December 18th, you can go to Solitude in Big Cottonwood Canyon (the bus goes there also, after one connection) for Ski and Shred in Red Day.

Yes, it’s why we love winter. Utahhhhhh.