Friday, December 24, 2010

Exploring Dyersville Ghost Town ... Boo!

Zorro says, "this is great!"

Thursday morning found us skiing to explore the historic ghost town of Dyersville.

The town of Dyersville was inhabited in the late 1800s/early 1900s to work the nearby Warriors Mark Mine. Our goal this Thursday morning was to ski, photograph and perceive both Dyersville and the Warriors Mark Mine. Skiing a success... Photos a success (see below)... Ghosts? No - boo!  ;-)

The route was an interesting contrast in terrain.
  1. The first 2.4 miles was a hard packed, uphill & well traveled cross country ski trail - the Indiana Creek winter trailhead up the Indiana Creek trail until the right turn to Dyersville.
  2. The next 0.5 miles was exhilarating! As soon as we turned off the main trail onto the path to Dyersville, we were met with deep & untouched powder - Max, Zorro and I trailblazing the path to & through Dyersville and up to Warriors Mark Mine.
  3. The snow was so deep in sections that I lost "touch with ground" - that is, multiple times I drove my ski pole into the snow to help propel us upwards and my arm & pole drove straight down past my foot, never connecting with solid ground! Yes, that is the length of my arm plus the length of the ski pole in depth and I never connected with solid earth!
  4. The next 0.5 miles was the return (in the same deep powder) from Warriors Mark Mine back to the main Indiana Creek trail.
  5. The last 2.4 miles was, again, the hard packed & well traveled trail to Indiana Creek winter trailhead. Except this direction was downhill (the elevation delta over this section is about 1000 feet)... Hard packed, occasionally steep and attached to 2 Siberian Engines - yikes, this was a test for my intermediate skiing skills!
Vital Stats: 5.8 miles total; 2hrs 5 min travel time; 93 minutes moving time (lots of time stopped exploring Dyersville & Warriors Mark); 3.8 MPH moving average (that 1 mile of deep/deep powder really slowed our average!); 14 MPH top speed.
The first abandoned cabin of Dyersville.
Continuing on to see more of Dyersville.
Those tracks in front of us are RABBIT TRACKS!
A water crossing to another cabin of Dyersville.
Note the narrow "snow bridge" to the left - this was our path over the ice cold, fast running stream.
Starting up from Dyersville to Warriors Mark Mine.
Fresh, untouched and deepening powder!
The narrowing & deepening trail to Warriors Mark Mine.
Warriors Mark Mine.
The snow was waist deep in the "shallow sections" here.
I did not want to get too close to the mine for fear of what I could not see under the snow...

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