Lessons learned in pleasing the snow god

ullrparty“Home we go!
Out of the driving snow!
Yule tree sought we, Yule tree bear we!
Home we go!
Yule log’s might and main we bring
With Ullr’s blessing: let us sing
Around the fire’s glow!” — Lyrics from Ullr’s Yule Gift by Winifred Hodge Rose.

Ullr (pronounced oolar) — the god of snow — is worshiped in ski towns like Sun Peaks. When there’s a lack of snow, it’s said that one must pray to Ullr to make it snow. Praying to him means one must sacrifice his or her ski equipment into a raging fire while crying out his name, and only then, will Ullr be happy enough to bless the town with snow.

Sun Peaks local, Dom Koric, throws a popular and anticipated Ullr party every year to bless the town with ample snow throughout the season. Year after year, he graciously opens his backyard, lights a fire for everyone to sacrifice their old skis and snowboards, and sets up a dance floor complete with DJs spinning their tunes all night.

Every year, it snows the day after Koric’s Ullr party. This year, though, there was no early season tribute to Ullr. All over the news, there have been reports of the worst amount of snowfall in all of the West Coast in years. Mt. Washington postponed their opening day until the New Year, and had to close twice this season due to lack of snow. Sun Peaks was blessed with enough snow early in the season for a good base, but then settled into a drought that lasted for weeks. Could it be that Koric’s decision to not pay homage to the snow god is the reason for the lack of snow in the West?

Realizing his error of omission Koric threw a late season Ullr tribute complete with a giant screen streaming the men’s Olympic ski slopestyle event. From what I heard, the party was amazing, and only equipment deemed worthy was allowed in the fire since pleasing Ullr was a top priority. And, poof, with a shimmer in the sky, just like past years, it snowed 10 centimetres the day after Koric’s nod to the god.

Koric’s party clearly worked in pleasing the snow god. Here’s hoping he learned from his mistake this year and throws his party at the beginning of the season next year.

Check out Carmen’s blog to read more of her work.

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