Easter. A holiday filled with fond memories of family gatherings, yummy food and flowery pastel clothing. This Easter was similar, except friends seemed to replace family, alcohol was the choice instead of food and an overwhelming amount of neon made for a lack of pastel. In the same annual traditional sense it just so happened to also be Highlands Closing Day.
This was my first Highlands closing experience and after years of over-hype, it was beyond anything I could have ever imagined. To end the season proper, Highlands throws a rager where the general idea is to dress as ridiculous as possible and drink an immense amount of booze until you’re cross-eyed. First things first, hike The Bowl. In order to somehow make everything that comes after seem right, hundreds of people hike The Bowl one last time.
After two lift rides and a decent 45 minute hike, I reach a mass gathering of people standing atop Highlands, pumping music, chugging beers and getting so crazy it almost seems like the mountain could collapse. While the sea of people shredded down at will, everyone congregated back at Cloud 9 for some table dancing and champagne popping.
I was told reservations had to be booked four months in advance, but that didn’t stop people from edging inside the small lodge to the point of claustrophobia. Only in Aspen would you be in a restaurant serving $10 beers and $34 plates, while girls in vibrant one-pieces gyrate to Black Eyed Peas “I Gotta Feeling”and 60-year-old men moon the crowd partying out front. Needless to say the celebration (and inappropriateness) that ensued there and after at the base was an Easter I will never forget. —TS