Monday, May 9, 2016

Slow but Fun

A "slow but fun" day on soft & sticky conditions.
"Toes on snow in May - no complaints here!" declare the happy pair looking back at me at
our turnaround point of the day.
Today was the first day this spring where the "spring crust" did not hold up. Even though temperatures dipped below freezing overnight and we were on the trails around 8am, the terrain was soft. Here is what happened... 2-3 inches of fresh snow fell overnight but the snow started falling before the temperatures dipped below freezing and the snow was wet & heavy. As a result, the 2-3 inches actually acted as an insulation layer that prevented the crust layer from fully freezing overnight. The result was sticky new snow on a soft crust. If we went too fast then the crust became punchy (as you are exerting more force with speed) but if you held yourself to a gentle jog then the crust held. Max & Zorro are as smart as me and quickly realized the state of the trail and they held themselves back to a gentle jog all day without any instruction from me. So smart!

Our "action shot" of the day as we are gently jogging and laying fresh tracks in 2-3 inches of sticky snow atop a soft crust:
Keep the speeds in check and keep on trucking :)
With no opportunity to put the pedal to the metal, the outing came with lots of off trail entertainment...

Pausing to check out an old mining cabin. Note that the Forest Service actually keeps this cabin intact, albeit original form, as it is a popular destination for summer bikers and hikers.
"Knock, knock - anybody home?" asks curious Zorro. He actually tried to push the door open
but it had a closed latch out of his reach :)
"Sniff, sniff - smells unoccupied!" declares inspector Max.

Pausing at the edge of a cliff to look at the ski runs from Breckenridge Ski Resort on the mountain across the valley from us.
"Shall we ski down the cliff?" asks silly Zorro getting as close to the edge as the gangline
would allow. "Not impressed... But I am very impressed with the squirrels darting through
the trees to our right!" declares hunter Max.

Finally, one of our favorite forms of "side trail" entertainment: Moose Tracks! The moose had recently crossed the trail and sauntered off into the trees to our right. Max & Zorro quickly hopped off trail to sniff the tracks (a sign they are very fresh). Max then quickly whipped his head up to scan the trees for moose. Zorro, on the other hand, is apparently doing a Moose Track Bellyflop - what else would you call it?
"Looking, looking - where are the moose?" asks tree scanning Max.
"I am immersed in moose track - aaahhhh!" declares bellyflop Zorro.

Slow but fun on soft & sticky conditions: 5.7 miles traveled with 900 feet of elevation climbed and a moderate top speed of 14 MPH.

2015/2016 Season to Date: 124 days on the trails covering 1122.9 miles with 123,400 feet of elevation climbed.

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