One fine adventure in the Gore Range

Today we planned to hike up Bald Mountain. We did. Victory dance!

View into the Gore Range from the top of Bald Mountain

 

I wasn’t feeling it at the beginning, we started super early to get up while it was still hard and icy, and ski the soft spring slush down around noon once the sun softened it up.

Going up was just miserable and I felt I was slipping and sliding all over, could have almost used an ice axe in parts where my skins would just slide me backwards!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank goodness The Man was more motivated than I today, we made it and oh was it worth it.

Backside of Bald

The view over the range was gorgeous and there was even cell service up there, who knew.

The spoils, after an almost 4 hour hike up

 

About to summit the ridge

Skiing down was super and we timed it pretty much perfect. The snow was softening up without being mushy and dangerous – anything over your ankle is no go, but it gets sketchy long before that on certain slopes.

We did see two avalanches on the way up. They had happened a while ago, looked to be triggered by snowmobiles judging from the tracks, but it is hard to say. Both on east facing steep pitches, not hard to believe with how strange the snowpack is and how warm it has been lately.

Remains of an avalanche up the Spraddle drainage

Making some turns off of Bald

After we skiied all the exposed stuff, it was time for some lunch – cheese dogs over a fire, oh yeah. There is nothing that tastes so good as a smoky hot dog after a hard hike. Love it.

Lunch time=delayer in the springtime sunshine

 

 

 

 

Blood, sweat and tears

Wow, what a day. The Man and I hiked to the Ben Eiseman hut, up the Spraddle Creek drainage. It took a whopping 7 hours!

Reading on The Man’s Suunto when we got back to the car

It is meant to be an overnight, but we just did a day trip to see the hut. Plus, the last one we did (Peter Estin Hut out of Yeoman Park) was a relatively short hike in. So was really shocked at this one. Skins on, skins off, back on, with all the variable pitches. Plus it has been super warm so it was crazy icy, skis couldn’t even bite and kept slipping on the thin trail.

Enjoying some delicious Honey Stinger waffles, finally made it to the hut

So happy to be heading “down” to my lunch at home

It took us 4 and a half hours to get up to the hut. The view was totally worth it (of course I say that now – was ready to kill while going up the last stretch!)

Vail Mountain with some of Holy Cross in the distance – picture doesn’t compare!

We relaxed for half an hour and began the long journey back to the car. I have never hated being on skis so much, even the turns weren’t that great since the snow alternated between spring slush and icy parts.

The Man pointing out Bald Mountain

Bald Mountain

Saw some incredible vistas though, got a fantabulous sunburn too, it was a gorgeously warm and bright day. And definitely feeling a sense of achievement now.

Going to the Hibachi place in town for dinner tonight, can’t wait!

Spring is in the air

It definitely feels like winter is coming to an end – really hope it snows before my mom gets here so it is not completely barren for the end of the season! In the meantime, I am quite enjoying the warmth, even if the skiing is not that grand. Today I am wearing pumps to work! With no socks. That is how warm it is.

Just went for a glorious run up Gore Creek Trail.

Trailhead for Gore Creek Trail

It was getting pretty toasty running straight up Bighorn Road, think I overdessed a bit. But beautiful, shady and quiet once I got into the trees further up the trail.

Looking back down the valley

Only saw 2 other people and they were snowshoeing. Otherwise I had it all to myself and the sunshine.

Shady pines along the creek

 

Spring is definitely on the way, so warm that parts of the trail have melted and refrozen, making for some ice – slightly precarious in just running shoes!

Ice ice ice

I just ran a short loop that backs out of the campsite further up the old Vail Pass road; and then back home.

Off to work now, but feeling most productive after that adventure.

Gore Creek Campground

Monday in the mountains

Breathtaking Monday morning, gorgeous sunshine and crispy air. Loving it today. Just got back from a quick run around East Vail – sidewalks slightly icy but otherwise it was a good one. We got up crazy early to do some work on Twitter accounts @bagandpack and @marinae1188.

I was just placing an order with Ibex (www.ibex.com), an awesome merino wool layering company. They make warm and breathable layers for sports and gorgeous lifestyle pieces such as sweaters and dresses. I had had my eye on one Meridian Cardigan all winter. Shock horror when I looked and they had changed to spring inventory already and I could no longer order it! So I emailed Ibex and they tracked one down fro me I am now going to order. Awesome service and approachability! (if that’s a word).

Early morning Vail mountain hiking

What a glorious morning! Back to work at noon but made the morning count with a skin up to Two Elk Lodge at Vail. Despite a late start – we missed the bus we were going for at 6.15am by seconds – we beat the crowds and were skiing down by 10am. Had a lovely snicker at the maze long line at the Vista Bahn and headed home for some well deserved oats oats oats.

M in his snazzy new Oakleys at the top of Chair 14

Two Elk Lodge and its troop of snowcats

M&Mย at Two Elk Lodge – well worth the hike up

Showcasing my Pret helmet

Snowy snowy day

Sitting inside on a snowy day with some movies sounds good to me! Hike to the Eiseman Hut is going to be postponed once more.

Snow storm unleashing in East Vail

Nutella and banana slice crepes for breakfast, yummy.