Photo’s are here or you can just click on the photograph above.
Dog-sledding, skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and other such wintery frolics 🙂
Breckenridge, Colorado re-visited … it was great to be back!
We decided to acclimatize to the lofty (9600 feet at town level) altitude more sedately than usual with a morning of (ultimately not so sedate) dog-sledding in the White River National Forest. We were off like greased lightning as the Siberian huskies, tongues lolling from their mouths and grinning from ear to ear, chased off after the guide on his snowmobile. Hurtling around bends, scraping through narrow tree-lined trails and bouncing along snowy tracks, we criss-crossed the forest and open plains as the dogs surged ahead at full pelt.
The excited hounds refused to stop even to carry out their morning ablutions… my impressive attempt to keep them under control whilst Geoff video’d his ride from the sled at my feet was interrupted only by the sudden splatter of freshly excreted dog poo bouncing at speed towards him at ground level 😉
Disaster averted after an unscheduled stop and all went smoothly again until one of the more wayward distracted creatures at the back of the pack found something irresistible to sniff at in the trees. He came to a grinding halt and wrapped himself and his neighbor around a tree trunk. Luckily I had already mastered the art of emergency braking before we joined them in a pile under the pines 🙂
All far too active for those who live and breathe at sea level, we repaired for the afternoon to the comfort of our somewhat luxurious abode to cuddle up by the log fire in an effort to warm back up to a more acceptable temperature and discussed just how cold 19F can actually feel when you are used to a distinctly more clement 85F !
And so on to the purpose of our wintery vacation … we headed enthusiastically on to the slopes clutching Geoff’s trusted and now well battle-worn snowboard and my posh shiny new carving skis for a week of high altitude (12,998 feet), high velocity fun and exhaustion!
The quality of the powdery, fluffy white stuff and the skiing were superlative as always in sunny Colorado 🙂
I spent most of my time trying to remember how to ski whilst simultaneously getting to grips with my new skis, concentrating on not knotting my legs together and avoiding breaking my neck. Geoff, conversely, spent his time weaving in and out of the trees spectacularly failing to avoid tree limbs and ultimately passing significant amounts of time digging himself out of snow drifts … nothing new there 😉
So, all was perfect…aside from the lift pass prices which seem to have doubled since we were last in town…presumably we were helping to finance yet another recently opened Superchair and the newly created Peak 6 all week. Clearly, there just weren’t enough peaks in this town already with Peaks 7, 8, 9 and 10! Breckenridge now has 187 trails which I suspect even an avid local skier would struggle to cover in a day.
After a couple of days of skiing and snowboarding, and in an attempt to give our weary limbs (and Geoff’s bruises) a mini-break, we headed off into the hills for a hike on the Sallie Barber trail in the White River National Forest. We were finally entirely alone in the wilderness with only the sound of our feet trudging through the crisp snow, a weasel rooting about in the undergrowth and the occasional squirrel scurrying up a tree to break the silence.
The very same White River National Forest was, however, far from peaceful and tranquil on the next fun-packed day of activity – snowmobiling. The silence was most definitely broken by the deafening racket from the 2-stroke engines and the usually pristine mountain air was far from pure but it was excellent fun as usual 🙂
Three hours of high speed battering, tearing around bends, ducking branches and clinging on for dear life coupled with my responsibility as official photographer of action shots (whilst not bouncing off the back into a rocky outcrop) eventually took its toll but as recompense I was finally allowed to try out the renowned Crepes a la Cart back in town for lunch 🙂 A giant chocolate, peanut butter and banana crepe was fair reward for the probably permanent damage to my lower coccyx …I think… 😉
More skiing and snowboarding followed (unsurprisingly) during which time I almost mastered my new skis, Geoff almost mastered his GoPro video camera and most impressively he finally worked out how to board in the glades without either sinking slowly into knee deep powder or impaling himself on sharp pointy parts of pine trees.
He was a very happy boy! 🙂
….and, ultimately, I was a very happy girl as we managed to squeeze in a final hike along Baker’s Tank Trail on Boreas Pass which was absolutely spectacular and … almost as good… I loosened another notch on my belt and managed to squeeze in another chocolate crepe before waving goodbye to the Rockies 😉
We headed back for a flying visit to Denver where Geoff caught up with an old school friend from England whom he hasn’t seen in 36 years… they lost touch when they were young teenagers, as was the way of the world of our youth before mobile phones, email and Facebook… but they finally reconnected in Colorado of all places! 🙂
As usual, a brilliant week on the slopes and another skiing and snowboarding vacation survived without sustaining serious injury 🙂