Snow Daze


Well, it's been a week and I'm home and the Katz are off to Copper where SK will probably be doing more of the thing that those shredder folks do... sit on the ground and ponder life.

Since they do it so frequently, one would think that sooner or later someone would make heated and padded seats for their snow pants. The unfortunate reality for shredders (snow boarders) is that it is not easy to lounge around on those things while both feet are snapped in place.

My friend's spouse and a friend of hers were the first to climb up the stairs where we were supposed to meet for breakfast. She did have this apprehensive look on her face, something along the lines of "what have I gotten myself into?" I think that when she saw that I didn't really have fangs and that I could converse free of drama, for at least a few moments, she began to relax. When SK climbed up a minute or two later I walked up and give him a hug and tried to squeez the life out of him, but it didn't work.

That meant that the old guy from the flat lands needed to try and keep up with the younger one who goes to the mountains just about every weekend. Left to our own devices, we headed off to ski and board, first the front side of the mountain, then the back, and finally the front again. Just before we headed down into the back bowl I had dragged my camera out (again)and was taking a shot SK at the top of the mountain. As I was framing the shot a young woman offered to take a shot of both of us, so now both of us are exposed out there on the slopes.

After a full day of skiing and boarding the four of us had a great dinner and watched gonza or fonza or whoever they are try and upset Arizona in one of the basketball games that makes for the madness in March. Soon the katz and kitten were on their way back down the mountain and I headed off to crash. The plan was to check in the morning and see if SK was up to meeting me at A Basin for round 2.

When I awoke I realized that I had left the cell phone out in the car so I headed out to retrieve it just before 7 am. I was pleased to see that the caller ID indicated a recent call, and I was even more pleased to hear that they were already on the road headed up to Keystone. That ment that day 2 at A-Basin was a go.

I waked back into the motel, grabbed my camera and drove up the road a piece for a shot of this peak in the early morning sun.

We met in the lodge and soon were back on the slopes. HK, not even thinking of the more extreme slopes of A said that she was content to sit in the lodge and enjoy the mountain view. There is a trooper for you, I'd have to be outside on something that moves. But then again, A Basin is my favorite among the slopes. Perhaps it's the extreme altitude, or the wind that blows over the top of the ridge dropping the temperature at the top of the mountain by a good 10 or 20 degrees.

Early in the day I suggested that SK go on down the mountain by himself as I was going to take off my skis and climb up to the top of the ridge behind the ski lift. I suspected that there was a great view from the other side, and I was pleased to see the grand vista that unfolded in front of me. At the top of the ridge I walked over to the boundary rope so that I could get it behind me and out of the picture, but in so doing I sank a good three feet down into the snow. HK told me to take some pictures from the top (I needed to be told that) and so I put together a series that are stitched together into the panorama below. It was later in the afternoon after SK and I watched a couple of kids go off the edge on their boards that I suggested that I climb to the left and he go right and I would get the images. He jumped, he fell, I laughed as the snow flew in every possible direction, but the last laugh was on me, as I didn't get the shot of the face plant. DO IT AGAIN SK He did, and I advanced to the edge of the ridge and straddled it for my next series of shots.

Larger panorama image here What you don't see in the image is the wind whipping the snow just over the edge of the ridge. It was so fierce that I used my jacked to cover my face and kept the camera inside of my coat to keep the blowing snow off the lens.

Monday was cloudy and snowing so I spent most of the day at the Frisco library working on a presentation for Thursday morning. Grabbed a couple of images as I was headed out of town for a quick night ski at Keystone.

Day 4 on skis, sun again. Tragic.

These two images are of the back side of ABasin and the ledge from which I took the panorama. Just right of center is a dip in the ridge, and that's the spot for the photo shoot, and the SK jump off the top of the mountain. Skis unbuckled at 2:40, drove to downtown Denver, fought the streets and traffic, showered, changed, walked down to my 6:00 meeting at 5:59.

Life is good.