Dave's Report - November 15, 2005
Hard work, but worth the effort.
Because my wife has been working very hard all year 'we' were able to get new trekker bindings, had them mounted earlier in the week, and yesterday we put on the skins and tried out our new toys. We started at the back of the ticket office and headed up Lizard towards the bottom of the Bear Chair. Our journey was made a lot easier thanks to a groomed track that runs up to the Bears Den, which was initially our first objective. By the time we got there though, it ended up being also our final destination, due to blisters ! A lesson Anita learnt was, dont grab the first pair of socks in the drawer if you are planning on skinning, especially if they're 2 years old, have stretched a heap, and have the heel pocket, now two inches up the back of your foot. Blisters are guaranteed to result.
Because we started a little later than planned the sun was well and truly up and after about 15 mins the layers started coming off. Conditions snow wise sure are looking good at this early stage and even somewhat better than a week ago when we snow shoed up. There were scattered groups on various parts of the Ski Hill all enjoying the beautiful day and the promise of some soft turns, all to themselves, on untracked snow.
The last little climb before you get to the Bears Den is quite steep so when we finally got to stand on some flat ground we were some what oxygen deprived. As we sat and took in our surroundings we could hear some folks over in Easter hooping and hollering. The boys from Kaz's house arrived at the Bears Den a short time after we did. It is very comforting to see a group of kids in the 20 ish age group looking as puffed as we were. A few more temporarily weary groups arrived also to have a break and enjoy the great view up into Lizard Bowl, with Polar Peak and Grizzly Peak towering overhead. The boys prepared themsleves both mentally and physically for the next stage to the top of Bear, by posing for the camera, while making suggestions as to whether or not they should be paid for the privilege.
As we had no way to alleviate the blister situation, we came back down on Elk , which to our delight was pretty much untouched and had fresh turns down to the base. Not very far, but well worth the walk up. The new toys were great. Thanks Anita. Keep up the good work.