Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Three Snowshoes in One

I ventured out for a few snowshoes that I haven't told you about yet. Three are worth mentioning.

The first was two Saturdays ago. I planned to hike South across Lake Fanny Hooe and climb up the ridge. But the winds were howling something fierce, and my curiosity pointed my boots toward Hunter's Point, where I figured the waves would be raging.

I am usually one who tries to look for the glory in the mundane, but let me tell you, snowshoeing through Copper Harbor on the flat land is pretty lame. My path options for this three mile trek were: cross country ski trails (on which Duce would make his own tracks over the groomed ones), the road, people's yards or areas with dense trees.

Holding hopes of a worthwhile journey I made it to that magical Point. Frozen splashes of waves pelted my face. The wind almost knocked me over in some spots. It was pretty brutal, but worth the excitement. I love the roaring waves. Here is an example of how consistent the wind was blowing. See the trunk in the background? That is standing vertical. The pines froze pointing south.

Luckily a couple friends came by to give me a ride, so I didn't have to walk the three miles home on the road.

Then I took a trip with the girls and a girlfriend for Duce. Not just any girls, however, some tough chicks. We crossed Clyde's field in a straight shot sinking through 7 inches of the two feet of powder. We looked up for a good spot to climb, and hand-over-footed it up ridge number one. That ridge was probably 82 degrees at its steepest, but standing and fallen trees gave us just enough grip for the ascent. At the top, we felt like we accomplished a feat.

We climbed two more ridges this way, and seeing that we would be descending if we kept heading straight, we decided to go back down -- the best part of all! Pick a clean line, and ski on our shoes or slide on our buns. Squeals of joy could be heard by the birds.

The snow was so thick up there. Below is a shot of a tiny pine tree holding probably twice its weight in a giant snow ball!

Then yesterday Aaron took Duce and I across a ridge by the Garden Brook as he scouted for new trail options. For most of this hike we walked parallel to Brockway Mountain -- West then East. That's always a majestic view.

My favorite part of this journey was the cedar bogs. Have you ever been in one? The trees are so close together, and so thick on top that they close you in the dark. I always think of the words dingy and murky, but still full of awe.

It's hard to really traverse the cedars when the ground isn't covered in three feet of snow. Your feet just get so wet, and you have to walk over so many fallen trees. But in the winter, it sure is a treat!

That's enough about snowshoeing for now, but I want to let you know, if you don't already, that the night all the ice blew out of the harbor, a new layer formed on top! Here's hoping it will stay!

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