Sunday, May 15, 2016

the ski area in summer

The local ski area is anything but sleepy in the off-season.  In the summer, there are zip line tours, and you can ride a gondola to the top (and back down).  Downhill mountain bikers race down the trails.  Huckleberry pickers know where the good patches are on the mountain.  Runners and hikers regularly make their way to the top.

I decided to go check out the trail, since I hadn't been to the ski area since the day it closed in April.

I stopped to check out the view into town.  The views from here are often better in the summer, since winter has its share of inversions.

The lifts waited quietly for winter.  The main lift runs in June, taking hikers, sightseers, and mountain bikers to the summit.  The restaurant there is open for lunch.  No dogs allowed on the lift though!

After about an hour, I ran into solid snow.  I abandoned the trail here and headed straight up.

The summit was still wintry and a chilly wind blew. The peaks in the park looked remote and cold. It will be awhile before any fires happen up here.

I headed back down into summer.  A couple of mule deer looked at me curiously. No bears today.

There are more spectacular peaks and trails here, but this mountain is close by and it defines our town. You can go there after work, since it stays light until almost 10 right now.  You can go there every day of the year if you want, to run, hike, or ski.  You can watch how it changes: how the snow hides the trails, and what time the flowers start to come out.  It's always worth the trip.

4 comments:

  1. Nice photos views....I remember this. Anticipating huckleberry time and wishing I could be there then!

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    1. Hopefully we will have a good huckleberry year. Last year wasn't that good, too hot and dry I think.

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  2. I like hiking through our local ski area in the summer and fall. Lots of great wildflowers and fall colors. And it's fun to see my favorite runs without snow!

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    Replies
    1. Somehow they look much less steep without snow!

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