Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Top Crust

Great views as we glide along the top layer of snow crust in open meadows at Vail Pass!
Snow covered Rocky Mountains all around us. Snow covered terrain all around us.
Skijoring fun all over Vail Pass this morning!

Our goal this morning was to skijor the "top crust" of snow in all of the meadows around Shrine Pass at the Vail Pass Winter Recreation Area. Max & Zorro really enjoy the open meadow tours we get in Spring when the top crust can support their weight as we glide back & forth, up & down and make our own path.

We started from the trailhead on an established trail and then, after climbing up for a mile or so, it was time to test the meadows for a top layer that would support us.
Off the main trail and pausing for a second to make sure the top crust can support us.
"Feels safe to me!" exclaims happy Max.
"If it can support you two, then you know I am safe!" declares cute little Zorro.

The top crust was still intact, so "touring the meadows" we went...
Wheeee - back & forth we go! You can see tracks from someone else who recently skied
up the middle of this meadow too.

The crust is holding just fine, let's open this team up!
Zoom go my skijoring partners as they tow me up and to the left.

Unfortunately, it was a warm day (low to mid 30s F) so the crust started to get soft and a little punchy partway through our outing. Once that happened, it was time abort the open meadows and get back on the established trail. Nothing wrong with the main trail, though, but it is a shame to see top crust starting to give in to Mother Nature and Spring...
Back on the main trail. "Let's catch some air and haul this human home!" declare the
airborne, sprinting pair.

Fun on the top crust for about 1/2 the outing and then fun on the main trails for the second half: 8.3 miles with 850 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 21 MPH.

2014/2015 Season to Date: 133 days on the trails covering 1144.5 miles with 120,050 feet of elevation climbed.

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