Saturday, March 26, 2011

Siberian Turbo Juice

Summit of Boreas Pass.
Snow melt to the right goes to the Altlantic.
Snow melt to the left goes to the Pacific.
We woke to 2+ inches of snow in town with reports of 6+ in the upper elevations. Spring rules: never waste new snow - so to the backcountry Max, Zorro & I headed this morning.

We did an invigorating 11.3 mile trek with 1,400 feet of elevation gain. The "up route" was a steep 4.5+ mile climb (yes, we skijored UP 1,400 feet in just 4.5 miles in just over 1 hour!) - the "down route" stretched the 1,400 foot descend over 6.75 miles.

After the first mile, there were no existing tracks on the trail. We did not encounter tracks again until about 2 miles from the end point. That is 8.3 miles of breaking trail in what turned out to be 4-12 inches of untouched powder! What a workout!

The only thing we encountered in the 8.3 miles of untouched terrain? Snowshoe hare tracks and fox tracks - LOTS of them. Some of the tracks were in the trail, some crossed the trail. If you want to experience "Siberian Turbo Juice" - put a set of hare or fox tracks on the trail for an extended stretch - the Siberians will certainly pick it up a notch following these tracks! The cross tracks kept me on my toes. Toss a quick "forward, let's go" command just before the Siberians intersect a set of tracks crossing the trail and Max & Zorro will (usually) glance left or right as they power on past the tracks. Perfect boys today - listening to the musher and crossing all the fox/hare temptations without breaking off the trail!

The Route: Indiana Creek winter trailhead and up Indiana Creek towards Dysersville. Continue past the usual left turn to connect with Boreas Pass Rd and continue another 1.5ish miles up the gulch until you intersect with Boreas Pass Rd at the Boreas Summit (this section is steep and had 6-12 inches of powder to break trail through - the reason most people take the earlier left ;-). Take a break at the Boreas Summit and then sprint down Boreas Pass Rd to the Boreas winter trailhead.

Vital Stats: 11.3 miles; 2h 20m total time; 2h 5m moving time; 5.4 MPH moving average; 15 MPH top speed; 1,400 feet of elevation gain (& loss). A pretty good moving average given the elevation gain we had to ascend while breaking trail through 6-12 inches of powder!
Zorro says, "don't most people turn left here to head up to Boreas?"
Max says, "don't care - power forward!"
No tracks in front of us, it quickly transitioned to 6-12 inches of powder from here to the summit.
At the Summit of Boreas Pass.
Section House, one of the Colorado Backcountry Huts, to the left.
Closeup of the Boreas Pass Summit sign.
The top of Section House behind the sign.
Max & Zorro making dual snow angels as we take a break at the Summit.
The Summit was very windy - apparently only the human thought it was cold
and the Siberians needed to roll around in the snow to cool off!

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