The plan was set.
It was the end of November and there wasn’t good snow to speak of, but the plan was set. We were going to ski. We went to bed the night before with knowledge of high snow levels and poor forecast for the next day. But our bags were packed and we were going skiing.
Waking up for a ski trip when you know the snow is going to be terrible is less than easy. The house was so cold and the bed was so warm and why isn’t winter here yet?
Coffee was made and homemade bread was eaten.
(This year for Friendsgiving I made my usual bread, this time substituting whole wheat bread flour for white bread flour. The taste was great, but I was disappointed with the overall results. Baking bread at 3200ft is different than baking bread at sea level. I hate when the first time I bake things for new people, it turns out less than perfect.)
After breakfast, we got dressed and loaded all our gear into Nick’s Subaru.
One of the major perks of working coffee at an outdoor gear store is clinics. At the beginning of October we had an Arc’teryx clinic and we scored amazing discount cards (off our already amazing pro discounts). Since I bought my beautiful Arc’teryx shell last spring, I decided I’d use my card to upgrade my ski pants. I knew that I wanted full side zips so that I can take off and put on my pants whilst still wearing my ski boots (a must when starting a journey up a mountain in the cold morning and continuing to skin into the heat of the day) and since my lower back constantly gets wet and cold, I needed bibs (or in the very least, pants with a higher back). Enter: the Theta SV Bib. Talk about the most perfect ski pant ever!
Anyway, this was their inaugural trip and I was in love.
We drove to Lost Trail Ski Area and continued to get ourselves together. Daryl made a trip to the Grinnell Glacier in Glacier National Park with Don, one of my coworkers at The Trail Head, in October, but this was Nick and my first trip out on our skis since Mt. Adams in July. Needless to say, we were all a hot mess. Eventually we looked like we knew what we were doing, and off we went!
We skinned up Boomer, then Lower Oreo, and up into Oreo. During the off season this year, Lost Trail cleared 300 acres in the trees, so we skinned through some of the “new” area.
It was so beautiful! And the snow was actually really nice! Powdery and wonderful!
We took a little break in part of the new area and joked around whilst drinking Cold Smoke.
Waist deep pow!
About half way down the slope, Daryl and Nick decided to head back up to slay some more pow. I had been nursing a terrible headache for about a day, and while it had gone away for a bit, it started to come back, so I chillaxed where I was.
Eventually they made it back down the mountain and we headed back to the car.
I’m proud of my skiing for the day. There was legit powder on the mountain, which I have never skied in before, and I was making turns. I linked turns and began feeling out how to ski in powder (which is totally different than the snow I’m used to skiing on). I’m excited to be able to actually ski in Montana snow, but I refuse to stress about it. I snag a lesson or two and I’ll be golden!
We got back to the car and loaded up. And then got stuck. Half an hour later, the car was free, and we actually left. C’est la vie. At least we were in a parking lot, with plenty of warm clothes on and three shovels.
We stopped at Higherground Brewing, had a DELICIOUS Thai pizza (it blew Mackenzie River’s out of the water!), and made friends with the bartender Evan before heading home.