In the afternoon, we finally reach Gudauri, Georgia’s (and perhaps the South Caucasus’) most popular ski station. It’s quite a jarring experience seeing snow all around in the middle of spring, but it’s a fun one nonetheless, especially when you’re from a tropical country.
No sooner than we climb down the van when we are making snow angels and snowmen, and throwing snowballs at each other. The snow is quite an unfamiliar sight for many of us that we’re at a loss on what to do with all that white.
Our hotel, the Guduari Loft, is also great, with bright and airy rooms that have very pretty views of the Georgian mountains, as well as great indoor facilities. In fact, we just spend the rest of the day lounging around the pool, the Jacuzzi, the sauna, and, before retiring to bed, the restaurant.
All that relaxing proves to be necessary as preparation for the following day, which we spend on outdoor winter activities, particularly snowmobiling and skiing. It’s actually my first time to try both.
It turns out that I love the snowmobile. It’s quite scary to try at first, especially when you’re still trying to familiarize yourself with balancing in the snow. Since it’s April, the snow is already starting to melt and the ground is soft, which can throw you off-balance. A couple of times I feel like the snowmobile is going to topple over and pin me underneath. But I end the session unscathed.
On the contrary, I find that I do not enjoy skiing so much. It requires much more effort on your legs than I expected since you’re wearing heavy boots. And going uphill with those boots are exhausting. After two hours of skiing lessons, my legs were sore (and I pride myself on being able to walk a lot).
But the experience is overall great. It’s an unusual yet thrilling conclusion to our trip in Georgia. Late in the afternoon, we drive back to Tbilisi where we will spend another night before heading to our next destination.