Monday, December 04, 2006

Divided We Trek

After passing on another opportunity to break out the skis for the first time this year, Jill and I headed up to the Continental Divide with the pups for some snow shoeing action yesterday morning. Temps were in the single digits at best, but the blue skies were inviting and being in the sun felt great.

So we loaded up all our gear and headed up to the Camp Dick area, where we'd jump on the Sourdough Trail and see how far we could go. Our first and only attempt to snow shoe last year wasn't so successful, as we zigged and zagged continuously for about a mile around Bear Lake in RMNP before Jill decided she was done with snow shoeing for that day.

Yesterday started out a little sketchy, I turned onto the road road and it proved to be a serious adventure for my 2 wheel drive truck. We weren't sure we were going to make it out of the valley, and pretty positive if we did it would be with guard rail damage along the entire passenger side. But hey guardrail damage sure beats plunging off a cliff right?

Once that was behind us, we found our way to the trail head and started stomping snow as quickly as we could. The dogs were quite happy to be out, and they yo-yoed off the front of us as we stomped along. We were actually making pretty good time as the terrain isn't as steep initially like Lion's Gulch we hike at so often.

We met a couple other people out, most of whom had pooches with them as well. One couple had a male version of Molly, who jumped and played with our two as he passed. I think Baloo might have even been confused, as he normally pays little attention to other dogs, but took off with the male impostor before we called him back.

Up on the divide the wind was howling, but in the tree cover it was pretty reasonable. We've accumulated some really nice cold weather gear (Pearl Izumi Am-Fib tights are a godsend), so the single digits temps coupled with 30mph wind really wasn't too bad, especially in the trees. Also, it doesn't take long to realize that snow shoeing is a really good exercise. You start warming up in a hurry when your bundled up and you are climbing an incline with snow shoes on.

We did about a 3 mile out and back, which judging from how tired and sore the dogs were last night, was probably about right. Had we not had the dogs and been quite hungry ourselves, we surely would have gone a little further. Regardless this was a MUCH better experience than our first time, and I think Jill actually enjoyed it this time.

1 comment:

Chris said...

Great pics. Looks like a (hard) blast! :)