Day Eight, 2/9 – Skalkaho Pass

Big Horn Sheep.
Definitely not something I’m used to seeing on the way to a mountain.
Big, huge, sheep with horns. Standing in the middle of the road. And not moving.
Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas any more.

Last week, after saying we were going to ski multiple days in a row, only to sleep in or take a nap or have to go to Missoula, we finally got on our skis. Doug and Aiyana were heading out on a short, 50-mile training run at Skalkaho Pass, so we decided to tag along. The four of us got up and dressed. While Daryl and I were drinking coffee and eating oatmeal, Doug got the truck set up and Aiyana fed her dogs. The Explorer and I left about an hour before Doug and Aiyana and drove up to Skalkaho Pass.

We put our skins on our skis, grabbed our packs, and off we were!
The plan was to skin out for about an hour and set up to take photos of the dogs as they went by. We are helping Aiyana with her website and with the Jr. Race to the Sky coming up the next weekend and the Jr. Iditarod at the end of the month, this was the perfect opportunity to get photos and videos for the site.

It was so beautiful! This continued my 100% streak of bluebird days while skiing in Montana!

Aiyana and her dogs are so awesome! It’s been years and years and years and years (about 20 or more of those years) since I’ve seen sled dogs in action, and I really don’t remember if we even saw them run (we went to some Iditarod event in the spring when I was little, but I have absolutely no idea what it was!).

After they ran on by, we continued to skin up the road a bit more. It was beautiful and the road was easy and we were finally off our lazy tushes and out exercising!
I’m absolutely sure these cross country skiers were laughing at our clunky AT gear. They sped on past us and were coming back the other way before we knew it!

So cute, my sweet Explorer is!

We set ourselves up again to watch the team come back down the road. This time I was in charge of the GoPro and I invented the new “boot mount”, which is entirely made up of the head strap mount wrapped around my boot. Fancy, huh?

Go Aiyana!!

After Doug, Aiyana, and the dogs went by, D got a couple turns and we went back down the trail to the car.

Eight days down, 92 to go!


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