Too Soon

Admittedly, this was as bad as it got.

Admittedly, this was as bad as it got.

Happy Solstice, everyone!  Spurred by a need for some skiing on the first day of winter and buoyed by reports of “loads of snow in the mountains”, I went up to Glacier Gorge to see for myself.

Long story short, there was snow and everything was very pretty but the skiing was terrible.  For much of the time, I wondered why I’d even brought along the skis.  The roots and rocks of the winter cut-off were covered with snow, but it was very arduous going.  Eventually, I just strapped my skis on the pack and hiked.  The normally amazing winter “canyon” trail up at Mills Lake was again covered, but made for pretty hazardous skiing. 

A side-by-side comparison of the canyon below Mills Lake.  Keep in mind that the 2011-12 winter was also pretty poor for snow.

A side-by-side comparison of the canyon below Mills Lake. Keep in mind that the 2011-12 winter was also pretty poor for snow.

Same story on the Alberta Falls trail on the way down; thin to ludicrously-thin conditions.  I got in a couple good turns, but was generally too terrified of hitting buried rocks to really enjoy myself.

Thin cover or not, at least it's finally pretty.

Thin cover or not, at least it’s finally pretty.

Regardless, it was nice to be out in the sun and wind.  Hopefully things improve or else I’ll be doing a lot of mountain running this winter.

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