Thursday, January 10, 2008

Buried.

I've lived in this valley for ten years and visited here for about 5 years before that. And I've never seen precip here like we've had since early December.Not to suggest that it's of biblical proportions--nothing of the sort. It's just significantly more than normal, and I've really been enjoying getting out into it.

Our local ski area is only about 30 minutes away by car, but it's also ~4000-6000' higher than the valley floor, and they've also received huge snow so far this winter. The Dog and I headed up early this AM and enjoyed a peaceful skin to the top with only a hawk and a raven for company. The deep snow slowed our uphill progress so that as we began the descent the unwashed masses were already being ferried up the lift. I typically try to be done before the lifts open, so as not to have to worry about Doogan getting in anyone's way. Anyhoo, it was great fun to be arcing turns through over-the-hood snow with Doogs bounding in my vapor trail, all while people hooted and hollered from above.

The snow wasn't completely untracked on the main runs and glades, so I snuck into a few of my favorite stashes to get some really deep turns. I'd dropped in and linked 8 or 10 of the best turns I'll get all year (chest deep on bent knee, with over-the-head shots in the pockets) and was already gasping for air when it occurred to me that Doogs wasn't going to do very well with this kinda snow depth. I pulled up short and starting calling for him. After an anxious 60 seconds he appeared as a silhouette on the ridgeline, tunneling, bounding, and plowing his way toward me, and unmistakably smiling the whole time.I stomped out a bit of a platform for him so that he could get up out of it, shake the accumulated stuff out of his eyes and nose, and just catch his breath. Then we dropped in again, and again, and again.

Not a bad way to start a day.

Calories and compromise Part 2, coming up next...

MC