Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Mountains

I have been enjoying two things that have happened quite independently of each other. The return of my repaired camera and now that it is a little later in the year the return of longer days. On top of the longer days has been a string of sunny days. With today's weather calling for sun glasses and skis I just had to go some where new. I had in December attempted to go for a ski by the hot springs. This worked to a point but I too the wrong entrance and caused my self more work then I had wanted. On top of that I never ended up on the trails them selves but was content to stay on the logging road.

Today I got on the trail at the first entrance, and found my self on a near perfect base which due to recent heating and cooling was solid and quick with only a thin layer putting up much resistance. It was quick and smooth. There were some minor issues. The track was oddly deep and periodically dented with foot prints. Moose it would seem were using the ski trail to there advantage. The moos tracks did not present any real challenge until after I had skied beyond the limit of the last fresh trail.

After a Kilometer or two there were no ski tracks that predated the most recent snow fall, the same could not be said for the moose tracks which were plentiful. They wondered making slow zig zags from one end of the cleared trail to an other, often strait down the center. And where there were not fresh tracks there were old ones covered in snow. Now I should point out that it works out that this moose or these moose made tracks that were nearly the same width as those made by a skier. So at a glance you might think the moose has done some work for you. it will be easier then plowing your own trail. This was wrong.

I found that the moose tracks were deep and caused my skies to sink irregularly and I was plowing through the snow between its foot steps in a deep channel. I did learn and start to move out of the moose tracks on to untouched snow where I hardly sank at all and a side from occasionally crossing moose tracks and the more frequent sinking of my ski pole into a hidden soft spot left by a buried moose track was able to make good speed. Now I feel slightly sun burnt on my cheeks and a little stiff in my legs but it was well worth it.

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