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"Lift Lines" is a new series from Aspen Public Radio that shares the joys of winter sports, broadcast throughout the week as part of our morning ski report. Reporter Kaya Williams brings her microphone to the chairlifts, gondolas and trails of the Roaring Fork Valley to ask people why they love sliding on snow.

Lift Lines: Paul Chan

Skiers ride a chairlift on a cloudy day in Snowmass Village
Kaya Williams
Aspen Public Radio
Skiers ride the Village Express chairlift at Snowmass Ski Area on Dec. 10. A foggy, windy morning didn't deter snow-sliders from heading to the slopes for a bustling Tuesday at the mountain.

It was a foggy, snowy morning at Snowmass Ski Area on Tuesday, with a light layer of snow on top of a much firmer base. But the flat light and funky conditions didn’t keep skiers off the mountain for a bustling Tuesday on the slopes.

And depending on the condition of your ticker, you might be better off out there this week than just about any other, according to Kansas City, Missouri cardiologist Paul Chan, who was in town for a cardiovascular conference.

“It’s a good time to have heart problems because there are 200 cardiologists right now on the ski slopes,” Chan joked while riding the Village Express chairlift.

So, from a cardiologist’s perspective, is what we’re doing out here in the snow good for us?

“Absolutely,” Chan said.

“It’s good for us from a physical standpoint because the recommendation for the general population is to get two and a half hours a week of at least moderate aerobic activity, and skiing is one of those activities,” Chan said. “I think also, our endorphins go up and we feel better just because we’re out and enjoying the outdoors, so I think it helps people’s moods and elevates the moods as well.”


Kaya Williams is the Edlis Neeson Arts and Culture Reporter at Aspen Public Radio, covering the vibrant creative and cultural scene in Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley. She studied journalism and history at Boston University, where she also worked for WBUR, WGBH, The Boston Globe and her beloved college newspaper, The Daily Free Press. Williams joins the team after a stint at The Aspen Times, where she reported on Snowmass Village, education, mental health, food, the ski industry, arts and culture and other general assignment stories.