Monday, March 21, 2011

About that snow...

The title of this blog has the word "snowy" in it because Valdez is known for having pretty epic winters, and 7-8 feet of snow isn't unheard of in this neck of the woods. In a week. 

But despite promises of having to ski to the cabin most days, or actually digging out of the cabin once and awhile, it hadn't snowed in a month until Wednesday night when we got a couple of inches. And the wind. THE WIND. Perhaps you heard of the 130mph gusts through these parts three weeks ago. It was hellish, and nuked all the mountains. There is hardly any snow at all up high, and you can actually see some patches of ground around the cabin.

But, this past weekend the wind finally abated, and by midday the sun softens the snowpack a little, and the cross-country skiing has been superb. Tory and I have been out every day for the last three days, and have taken advantage of the still-frozen creeks to explore some the of drainages around the snowy cabin.

Friday we skied up Brown's Creek, a 10 mile round trip, and unfortunately the camera wasn't working. But yesterday we had a sweet little ski up Wortmann's Creek, right behind our cabin. It's a lovely ski, mostly flat, and it takes up through a canyon to Wortmann's Glacier.

The waterfall was in the sun, but not us. 

We skied up the creek, weaving our way over snow bridges. Because there hasn't been so much snow this year, we won't have long until the snow melts and we won't be able to take advantage of the easy traveling conditions. For now, seize the day!

Wolverine tracks!

We saw plenty of signs of life. Just like us, the animals are taking advantage of the easy terrain, and we saw tracks from wolverine, wolf, ptarmigan, fox and porcupine. 

The view beyond

After the 10-miler the day before, I was ready to head home. It was inspiring to see the mountains beyond. With a little more snow, they even look skiable!

Headed home!

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