Saturday, March 31, 2012

Groomed Elevations

Hot day... Max cooling off by rolling a snow angel on
the trail.
Today's skijoring outing found us exploring the higher elevations of the Breckenridge Nordic Center.

We do not visit the nordic centers around town that often; but every once in a while we will take a spin on the few trails they have designated "dogs allowed".

After a hot & dry March, our typical backcountry trails are in very poor condition. Conversely, a nordic center does constant packing, grooming and other maintenance of their trails. So, when the unmaintained backcountry trails start to really deteriorate, it is time to switch to the well-maintained nordic center trails for skijoring fun.

So, what's the big difference between backcountry trails and nordic center trails? Two things you find at the nordic center: (1) groomed, groomed & groomed; and (2) wide trails. Groomed trails are easy trails - you are never breaking trail and you rarely hit any ice or slick/hard-packed surfaces. Wide trails are easy trails - no worry of maneuvering through tight trees or veering off trail into deep snow and plenty of room to swing out right & left to keep control.

Another typical feature of nordic centers versus backcountry trails is "flat". Most nordic centers have little elevation gain and you are skiing around pretty flat terrain. But, this is where the Breckenridge Nordic Center differs - they have great elevations on their upper trails.

Thus our outing today - groomed, wide and steep. Wheee, what a Siberian fun time! We scaled up (and down) about 2150 feet of elevation over a course of 12 miles. Our skijoring time to cover this distance & elevation was only 105 minutes - groomed and wide means fast, even if steep!

Hallelujah Hut - one of the many "warming huts" sprinkled throughout the
Breckenridge Nordic Center.
"What? A warming hut?!? You've got to be kidding, I've never been so
hot!
" demonstrates Max.
"No really - what's in that building? I've never heard of something as
silly as a 'warming hut'!
" ponders Zorro as he surveys the hut.
Groomed & wide - a Siberian Speed Track!
Vital Stats: 12 miles; 125m total time; 105m skijoring time (we took one 10m break to cool off at the warming hut and had 2 sections of exposed terrain to shed the skis and walk over); 21 MPH top speed; 2150 feet of elevation climbed.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Siberian Hot

It was 38 degrees when we started at the Indiana Creek trailhead today. It was 48 when we finished. Phew, those are "Siberian Hot" temperatures...
Everyone taking a quick break before cruising back down to the trailhead.
Our planned route was to head out & up along Indiana Creek for 3 to 4 miles, take a quick break and return the same route. The question would be "would the Spring trail conditions" cooperate with the plan?

For the most part, the answer that question was "yes". But, we did have to remove the skis twice on the way up (and twice on the way down): once to cross over about 20 yards of exposed dirt & rock and once to cross over Indiana Creek. We also had to slow down to navigate over 2 different downed trees (the trees fell in early winter and had been covered in snow until recently). After about 3.3 miles heading out & up, we had to stop and turn around. We had out-skied the common cross country trail and were in a flat meadow with a hard layer of top snow. After skijoring for a bit through this meadow, suddenly Max & Zorro stopped. Then the top layer of snow cracked and a circle about 10 feet around us in all directions and dropped about 3-5 inches. Smart boys sensed this happening and stopped to wait through the "snow shelf" dropping around us. We took a break at this point and then turned around and headed back.
Surveying the terrain around us. A group of squirrels was making noise to our
left - thus the reason both Siberians are intensely looking to the left!
Oh my - a trail casualty at Indiana Creek. You can see the existing tracks where
going over this water hole is the typical trail. We had to go to the right and cross
a few feet down creek instead. Wondering where Zorro is in this picture? Ha, he's
there, just on the other side of tall Max (you can see Zorro's tail, the rest of him is
dwarfed by the tall red boy).
Vital Stats: 6.7 miles; 90m total time; 65m skijoring time (lots of stopped and/or non-skiing time to deal with patches of sketchy terrain); 19 MPH top speed; 1100 feet of elevation climbed.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Buttjoring

Today we invented a new twist to skijoring: buttjoring (explained below)...
Our high point over 11,700 feet in between Boreas and Baldy mountains. A nice
hard layer of "top snow" to keep us from sinking in the 2-3 feet of snow under
the top layer. 
The "spring conditions" at the lower elevations (below 10,500 feet) are getting really sketchy with ice and/or exposed dirt & rocks. So, we decided to go up, way up, today. The goal was to skijor to Bakers Tank on Boreas Mountain then go straight up Boreas until we intersected with the power lines that would guide us back down onto Baldy Mountain. We knew the up route would be steep - that's not a problem, skijoring up any incline is easy & fun. We knew the down route was also steep; but we had done this down section earlier this season (when we had fresh powder) and had a great time. Oh, how conditions can change...

Instead of a nice powder route down, we found an extremely hard, almost ice, top crust over the snow. The layer was so hard that neither Max, Zorro or myself on skis would break through to the deeper snow. That was ok at first, then the steep down incline started - far too slick for me to be able to keep the speed under control and not be launched down the mountain by my pals. I decided to shed the skis and hike down this steep area; plop - without my skis for support, my weight broke through the top crust and I sunk into waist deep snow. "Well, now what?!?" I contemplated: the terrain is too slick to ski down, the top crust is not thick enough to walk down - now what.....

Then the lightbulb went off in my head - if I am on the skis, I do not bust through the crust - how to be on the skis without skiing? I put both skis next to each other and then sat on the bindings facing forward. I put both legs forward as well so they were parallel with the skis. I told Max & Zorro to "go forward" and we started moving down the hill. I quickly learned how to use my feet to steer and act as brakes and off we went: sitting on my skis, buttjoring down the slick & steep terrain! Success!

You might wonder what Max & Zorro thought of this new configuration. At first they kept glancing back with looks of "Huh, what are you doing?" Then I started getting comfortable with the setup and letting us go a little faster - speed is the remedy to all Siberian concerns. As I opened up the speed, Max pranced back at me, tossed out a "Woo" and then turned around and started sprinting downhill with Zorro. Zoooooom - buttjoring down the mountain we went.

Eventually we got back to the lower (and less steep) elevations. We were able to resume skijoring for a little while; but eventually had to shed the skis and hike down the rest of the trail due to conditions.

Vital Stats: 9.7 miles; 135m total time; 90 skijoring time (75m up only 15m down); 25m buttjoring time; 15m hiking time; 15 MPH top speed; an exhilarating 1650 feet of elevation climbed!
A sample of the conditions below 10,500 feet - occasional "no snow" patches
to approach slowly and carefully navigate over. 
We just finished our downhill buttjoring; the human is resting and putting
the skis back on. The Siberians? Well they show no signs of sprinting and
jogging for 2 hours without a break!
"Old abandoned mine" or "fascinating squirrel fort"?
Depends who you ask ;-)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Just Enough

Just enough new snow on the trails today for us to really open up the Siberian Skijoring Vehicle...

We hit 23 MPH as our top speed flying down the trails in Indiana Creek!

1) Lower Terrain: The Creek!

Our route started at the Indiana Creek winter trailhead and then headed out into the Indiana Creek Gulch. What did we find? The Creek! Eek, that's not supposed to be this visible until late April or May!
"Eeeek! The Creek!" all 3 of us stop to exclaim!
The "spring melt" is officially "on" around the lower sections of Indiana Creek.
Note that there is water to the left and water to the right - Max & Zorro are actually
standing on a "snow bridge" over the middle of the creek. In a few more weeks this
will probably be melted and the trail will require wading the freezing creek!
A little further and we are at the most narrow section of the snow bridge over the
creek. This last little bridge over the creek was barely 2 Siberians wide. A cautious
crossing for all...
2) Mid/Upper Terrain: Fresh Tracks

Once we traversed over & across Indiana Creek, we hung a left and cruised about 1/3 of the way up the trail towards Boreas Pass. We then swung a 180 and sprinted back down into the gulch. Before hitting the exposed creek again, we hung a left and sprinted out & up along the trail that parallels Indiana Creek.

This entire stretch of trail was wonderful! 2-3 inches of fresh, untouched powder found us gliding along laying fresh tracks for miles. Wheeeee!
Mid section of the trail paralleling Indiana Creek. Fresh snow on the otherwise
hard packed trail. Cruising along having a great time.
Far back in the Indiana Creek gulch. A look back at our fresh tracks in the snow.

3) Top Terrain: Snow Angels

At our highest point, we actually found ourselves breaking trail in over 8 inches of powder! We only went 10-20 yards in the deep stuff before taking a break to make some Snow Angels and then head back down to the Indiana Creek winter trailhead.
Beautiful snow angel by Max! Notice the snow all over his back as he just finished
a complete roll in the snow. Nice form!
Max continuing his snow angel antics while Zorro chomps on snow cones in
the background. Max loves doing snow angels to cool off, Zorro loves chomping
down on snow to cool off...
Vital Stats: 7.3 miles; 87m total time; 77m skijoring time; 23 MPH top speed; 1100 feet of elevation climbed. Zoooom - fast day and nice amount of elevation climbed!

Monday, March 19, 2012

A Trace - Lets Go!

We had a trace of new snow at home overnight. But, we have not had new snow in almost 2 weeks; so a trace was enough to send Max, Zorro & I out to the backcountry. It was beautiful up high on our lesser used/lesser known trails; but it was a trace of snow over a sheet of ice near the trailhead.

One of the lesser known trails we use to loop up, down and around Baldy Mountain.
Just the 3 of us laying fresh tracks in a trace & up to 2 inches of new snow. Woo
We started at the Baldy Mountain winter trailhead and took off to explore all the hidden pockets of trails on Baldy. The first mile from this trailhead is very well-known and well-used; so it was skijoring with a trace of new snow on sheet of ice. "It will be an interesting path down!" I commented. After the first mile, we got onto our lesser-known trails that loop us back & forth and up & down Baldy. This was wonderful - 1-2 inches of fresh snow on the packed (but not ice) trails. Wheee, we had a blast cruising around Baldy and laying fresh tracks in the snow. But, eventually we had to come back... I talked with my skijoring buddies and we all agreed, "Every path down is going to be only a trace of snow over a trail of ice. We might as well come back down to the Baldy trailhead since we saw the worst (ice) parts of the trail on the way up!"

Just as we expected, it was a slick & difficult path back down. Constant snowplowing to keep our skijoring vehicle under control on ice. Frequent stops to rest the human's burning legs from pushing so hard to keep under control. Phew, that last mile was tough and slow...

All in, we had a fun & fast first 6 miles flying around Baldy on lesser used trails and we had a very slow final mile coming down steep terrain on sheer ice. 6 out of 7 isn't bad - woos from all  :-)

Taking a quick break near the True Romance Mine. Max looking for the "source"
of all those fox tracks to his immediate left and down to his right.
Same as above... But, the sun just broke through the clouds and Zorro is now
in the "where is the fox" observation point...
Another shot of us cruising up & along the trails.
A glimpse of the untouched 2 inches of snow waiting for us on the trail. Our path
from here is fresh tracks forward and then right at the big tree shadow and up & into
the forest. Wheeee!

Vital Stats: 7 miles; 100m total time; 85 skijoring time (15m for one break and rests for the human on the difficult downhill mile of ice); 14 MPH top speed; a fun 1200 feet of elevation climbed. Given the conditions, we never had a path to "open up the throttle" and hit some really fast speeds.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

I Love It When...

I love it when a squirrel, snowshoe hare, or other tasty wildlife jumps on the trail in front of us when we are skijoring uphill - talk about Siberian turbo boost!

There is no feeling as cool as being in a "downhill tuck" while flying uphill - Siberian Power at its best.

Conversely, though, there is nothing I dread like a tasty morsel dropping on the trail in front of us while we are flying downhill. The Siberians do not need a reason to boost their downhill momentum! Thankfully, today's wildlife boost happened on uphill terrain - wheeeeee!

Cruising down Boreas Pass Rd. Note the swath of exposed dirt on the shoulder
ahead and to the left. Even though we were high up on Boreas, this trail is so
sun & wind exposed that it is quickly approaching non-skiable if we do not
get some new snow soon!
It was "spring skijoring" today as we had conditions all over the map: (1) started at Indiana Creek and skijored up a "trail of ice" as we started towards Boreas; (2) moved into nice packed powder as we got further up the trail and past the point most people go; (3) intersected "sun & wind exposed" Boreas Pass Rd for quick sprint down to Bakers Tank; (4) cut up into the backcountry onto one of our "secret & little used" shady trails and enjoyed soft powder for miles; (5) eventually had to return home and got back onto another "trail of ice" to return to civilization. Unfortunately the last part of the final leg was soooo steep and icy that we had to shed the skis and hikejor down (hikejor - human hiking while the Siberians are still in skijor hookup).

Contrast this fun, untouched snow to the photo above. We have a network of
"secret trails" that we use to connect between the busy/packed trails. It is so fun
to get on our own terrain!
Snow Angel Max cooling off in the snow. It was hot enough today that Zorro joined
in the snow angel festivities; but the stupid human hit "delete" instead of "save" after
snapping a photo of Zorro's snow angel antics.
Vital Stats: 8.2 miles; 110m total time; 85m skijoring time (25m for one long break to cool off and time hikejoring down the last stretch of trail); 17 MPH top speed; an exhilarating 1400 feet of elevation climbed! 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Sightseeing

Approaching our finish at the French Gulch
trailhead. Max hamming for the camera;
Zorro happily lunging forward.
Today we went "skijor sightseeing" to a bunch of mining relics on Boreas and Baldy mountains...

(1) We skijored to Bakers Tank on Boreas.
(2) We skijored to Iowa Mill on the west face of Baldy.
(3) We skijored to the True Romance Mine on the north face of Baldy.
(4) We skijored to the Sally Barber Mine on the north face of Baldy.

A typical cross country skier would visit one of these sights in a days' outing. An expert cross country skier might visit 2 of these in a days' outing. A Siberian propelled cross country skier (me!) visits all 4 of these in a day's outing - Siberian Power :-)

The conditions at the trailheads (start and finish) were hard packed sheets of ice. But, a mile or so away from each trailhead was great - packed powder, not packed ice. We could have skijored peacefully all day on the nice trails deep in the backcountry - too bad we had to return...

Vital Stats: 9.6 miles; 125m total time; 100m skijoring time (we had about 10m of breaks and one unfortunate section of carrying the skis hiking down a rocky, ice path for 15m); 16 MPH top speed; 1150 feet of elevation gain.

Happy running Huskies as we come up a little incline to finish
at the French Gulch winter trailhead.
video

Cruising along the packed trail to the True Romance Mine. Zorro taking a
peek down the steep incline off the trail.
We'd been skijoring for over 90 minutes straight before taking a quick break.
Is Max tired? "Nope, I'm ready to keep going this direction!" He demonstrates.
"Not tired either, this direction looks fun!" says Zorro.
I guess only the human needed a quick break after 90 minutes of jogging
and sprinting skijoring...

Friday, March 9, 2012

Icy Trailhead

Pausing for a quick equipment adjustment - the Siberians
are primed & ready to go!
It was supposed to be a short, fast outing in Indiana Creek today.

It started just that way as we went cruising out & up the trail at a pretty nice clip. It is uphill the whole "out direction" and we covered the 3.25 miles and 800 feet of elevation gain in a fast 35 minutes. I did note to myself, "the trails are pretty hard packed and icy, should be an interesting trip down..." Understatement of the year...

It continued as a fast outing as we came back down. The upper sections of the trail are not as heavily used as the lower sections; so, although the trail was hard packed, we were able to keep under control and cruise the first 2.25 miles at a pretty fast pace.

Then it all came to a halt... The last mile back to the trailhead is a heavy used cross country ski trail - extremely hard packed snow. In addition, we have had been in a heat wave the last 3-4 days with high temperatures around 40. This means the top layer of the packed trail starts to thaw each day and then re-freezes into a sheet of pure ice overnight. As we approached this last mile of pure ice going downhill, I realized "stopping" was an issue - getting propelled by two Siberians on pure ice means you cannot stop! Well, needless to say, I am not going to launch myself down an icy hill with my sprint partners with no ability to stop! So, we instead progressed very slowly this last mile: begin to skijor until you feel the ability to stop slipping away from you and then immediately cut left or right into a stop - then repeat... This is when our fast outing did a 180 and we took probably 15-20 minutes to traverse this short mile of ice.... Oh well, at least the first 5.5 miles was a sprinting blast.

Vital Stats: 6.5 miles; 80m total time; 70m skijoring time; 18 MPH top speed; 800 feet of elevation climbed.

A look back at our tracks far back in Indiana Creek - we have out-skied all
existing cross country tracks and are having a ball laying fresh tracks
across the untouched terrain.
"Yep, untouched terrain - having a ball - digging for rodents!" demonstrate
Max & Zorro.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Definition of Warm

You know it was a warm day when....

When Zorro is doing Snow Angels in the snow to cool off!
Zorro rolling a snow angel in the snow at the trailhead.
Max is the consistent "snow angel husky" in our pack, as he does them regularly - regardless of temperature. Zorro, on the other hand, typically eats snow cones to cool off and rarely does snow angels. But, when it gets hot enough, Zorro realizes snow angels are a more effective cooling tactic than eating snow cones.

It was sunny and 28 degrees when we started our outing today and sunny and 35 when we finished. That is "Siberian Hot", especially when towing a human up, down and around the mountains.

Fun episode of the day... We started at the Swan Road winter trailhead next to Good Times Adventures. Now, recall that Good Times runs Dog Sled Tours on trails in this area. Our intent was to head out and up the South Fork of Swan Road towards Georgia Pass. Good Times runs their tours primarily on the Middle Fork of Swan Road. But, there is an overlap between these 2 routes at the trailhead. Anyway, we were going up the trail near the start when we heard a noise behind us. All 3 of us looked back to see an 8 dog sled (loaded with 2 people) coming up the trail. Max & Zorro exclaimed, "Uh uh, not gonna pass us!" and then took off sprinting up the trail and we started pulling away from the 8 pack! We then got to a fork in the road where we went right to head up the South Fork and the 8 pack turned left to stay towards the Middle Fork. Of course, we were not going to be able to out run an 8 pack for very long; but it had to impress the tourists to see a 2 pack & guy on skis pull away (if only for a short distance before we went separate ways)! Wheeeeee.

When we arrived back at the trailhead, one of the operators of Good Times was coming by on a snowmobile. He stopped to talk to us and said, "That's a nice looking pair of huskies." How flattering to be complimented by someone who runs Siberians professionally!

Vital Stats: 8.5 miles; 95m total time; 85m skijoring time; 19 MPH top speed, 1400 feet of elevation climbed. The only bummer of the outing was that our route got very busy with snowmobiles coming up as we were going down. There are lots of blind corners on this trail, so I never felt "safe enough" to open up the Siberian Throttle and really sprint - too dangerous to encounter a group of snowmobiles when flying around a blind corner.

Of course Max did his snow angels to cool off today too. But, he does snow
angels when its zero degrees...
Zorro laying flat in the snow to cool off while he eats some snow cones. He
hasn't decided to "snow angel" yet, still trying the snow cone approach to
cool off.
Nice shot of the pretty terrain around us and sunny blue skies.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Good Time by Good Times

We had a good time skijoring to, by and past Good Times Adventures today. Good Times is the local outfit in Breckenridge that runs Dog Sled Tours for tourists in the area.
We took a quick break when we came out of the mountains towards Good Times.
I could hear the Good Times' Huskies howling when we stopped (we were not
within sight of the dog yard, just hearing distance). If I could hear 50+ Huskies
howling, you know Max & Zorro could too! Look at Zorro pointed and focused
in the direction of the howls - he's sooo intense when he locks on something!
This was a new route for us today - we were attempting to connect 2 known areas (French Gulch and Swan Valley) via a route never traveled before. Here's how the outing went...

(1) Start at French Gulch and go straight up a VERY steep Forest Road 567. This exhilarating section took us up 900 feet in under a mile. Phew, that's a workout for all.

(2) After cresting high above French Gulch, we continued on Forest Road 567 down into the Swan Valley area. This took us down about 1100 feet over 2.5 miles of snowmobile trails - "scary steep" for a few short sections, but mostly a gentle ride down.

(3) After connecting into Swan Valley, we took South Fork Swan Road up & out for a little jog (this road is closed to cars in the winter, but well traveled by snowmobiles). After doing about 400 feet of gentle up, we turned around and headed down towards Good Times.

(4) After taking a quick break to listen to the Good Times Howls, we started again towards Good Times and skijored to their front entrance and then down Tiger Road back towards civilization.

(5) A little ways past Good Times, it got interesting - we started running out of snow! I had no cellphone reception, so I could not text Nancy to pick us up. So, we got creative - we skijored the shoulders of the road, the middle of the road, basically anyplace with a little snow or ice until we got back into cell coverage. In total, we went about 2 miles on very sketchy terrain (going somewhat slow to make sure we avoided exposed rock & dirt).

Overall, a fun & successful time connecting French Gulch to Swan Valley; but a little disappointing terrain for the last 2 miles.

An old abandoned mining cabin on the route between French Gulch/Swan Valley.
I was checking the GPS for the correct route down - if I stop for too long, Zorro
always plants his butt in a statement of, "I'm dying standing still, can we go yet?!"
At another "check the GPS" break, Max decides to roll in the snow to cool off.
Zorro coming to inspect Max's snow angel. Every Siberian owner knows what
happened next (after they "locked eyes")... Yep, a Siberian wrestlefest broke
out in the middle of the trail.
Approaching the front entrance of Good Times. A "dog box trailer" with a
couple of dog sleds on top. We were never in sight of the actual dog yard, but
the howling was increasing - every Siberian sensed the presence of other Siberians
in the vicinity!
Vital Stats: 8.1 miles; 120m total time; 95m skijoring time (quite a few stops to check the GPS for route selection and then quite a few stops checking for cell reception); 17 MPH top speed; a nice 1300 feet of elevation climbed.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Half and Half

A nice "half and half" day skijoring in French Gulch. (1) The lower half of the trail was well-traveled: a wide, well-used trail with 0-2 inches of fresh snow. (2) The upper half of the trail was all to ourselves: breaking trail in 4-8 inches of fresh snow over a very narrow "hidden" trail. The established trail in the upper half is only one Siberian wide (or one pair of skis wide), so we had to skijor single file through this section. As usual, if you stepped off the established trail, you sunk into a couple of feet of snow.

Breaking trail in about 6-8 inches on a narrow "one Siberian wide" trail. Max
and Zorro glancing back at me to say, "Hey dude - narrow trail, breaking trail -
put that camera away and keep in sync!
"
Max out in front leading the way. You cannot see the trail - but it is there as
a well-packed base under the fresh snow. It always amazing me how well Max
and Zorro can stay on a hidden trail and not fall off the edges into much deeper
snow. As soon as the hidden trail gets too narrow to skijor shoulder-to-shoulder,
they automatically drop into single file configuration. Smart Guys!
A look back at our tracks ascending up the Little French Gulch trail. We took
a quick break here before heading back down. The sun was nice enough to
break out of the clouds to warm me a bit during the break. It was 4 degrees when
we started with a strong, gusting wind - so, the brief sun was much appreciated!
Apparently I took too long taking a break in the sun. Max and Zorro, tired of
waiting for me, decide to go "head dunking" and exploring off the trail. Wonder
who found the best buried treasures?
Ah - apparently Max's treasure hole was the most interesting. Here comes
Zorro to help explore. Don't worry, I flipped the gangline over the poor little
tree behind Zorro before he could snap the tree in half!  :-)
Vital Stats: 7.1 miles; 95m total time; 85m skijoring time; 19 MPH top speed; 1100 feet of elevation gain. That might seem like a "slow outing", but factor in 1/2 the time spent breaking trail over a narrow path and it makes sense...

Friday, March 2, 2012

Fresh Tracks to 500 Miles

Cruising back down Boreas Pass Rd. Max
doing his usual "hamming for the camera".
We passed 500 miles for our 2011/2012 skijoring season today!

Our last 3 outings have been quite intense (either in distance or breaking trail in extremely deep snow). So, today was an intentional "short sprint day". It is nice to mix a little run in now and then...

It was a beautiful & brisk morning - partly cloudy with occasional sun and a Siberian ideal 2 degrees at the trailhead. We were the first tracks on Boreas Pass Road with 2-4 inches of fresh powder all to ourselves. A wonderful day to jog about 7 miles while laying fresh tracks in the 2-4 inches of new snow!

When we got back to the trailhead, Max had no interest in a drink of water. "Geez, we only went 7 miles without having to break trail... And, it never got above 10 degrees - who needs a drink?!?!" declared Max. Zorro, on the other hand, was doing his usual chugging of snow cones at the trailhead - at least he worked up a little thirst ;-)

Vital Stats: 6.8 miles; 83m total time; 73m skijoring time; 18 MPH top speed; 650 feet of elevation gain. A nice little trot on Boreas Pass today... A video of our final approach back to the Boreas trailhead below:

video

Max, head covered in snow, just finished rolling a snow angel. I was too slow
with the camera to catch the action before he popped back up.
Rabbit Tracks!!! Other than the occasional snowshoe hare tracks, we had Boreas
Pass to ourselves today and were laying fresh tracks in 2-4 inches of snow.
A look back at our fresh tracks coming up Boreas.