Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Back to May

Back to "late May" on the trails at Vail Pass this morning.
One of the few nice open stretches to get some speed.
Those clouds sure do look promising to help extend our season; but unless the temperatures
drop, they are bringing snow destroying rain! Ugh!

While it was "February conditions in late May" on Sunday, it was back to "late May" conditions today. The temperatures did not drop below freezing overnight so, even though you see a lot of snow in today's photos, it was soft & slow and you could not deviate from the set trails without sinking to your Siberian chest in wet snow.

We were ok with the soft & slow conditions at the Vail Pass trailhead as our plan was to go up from there. We expected the temps to drop as we climbed and expected to find firm & fast conditions as we ascended. Unfortunately, we climbed and climbed but never found firm snow.

Eventually I had to declare the "search for firm snow" over and announce it was time to turnaround and head back down:
"We may have failed to find firm snow, but it IS Toes on Snow!" declare the happy pair
circling back to me at our turnaround point of the day.

But wait a second, it is a "siberian hot" morning (temperatures around 32-36 F), so...
"Must roll snow angels to cool off before starting down!" state funny pair.
Nice form to their synchronized snow angels, though!

We did find a few stretches were we could open up the throttle....
Zoom we go on some nice conditions in this stretch of forest!

But as nice as that last shot looks, here is what happened down low...
Yikes! Skis off as we hike out the last mile or so...
"But, wild pheasant to the left - that can distract us from depressing mud!" declare the
pheasant hunting pair!

A slower than usual day on soft snow (and mud) searching for but failing to find firm snow: 6.4 miles with 850 feet of elevation climbed.

2014/2015 Season to Date: 149 days on the trails covering 1282.2 miles with 134,250 feet of elevation climbed.

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