Monday, March 24, 2008

Welcome to My Underground Lair

What a fun weekend! I have logged another first. Bryce, Wrigley and I headed down to Turnagain Pass with plans to find mellow terrain (some serious snowfall - 40 inches in a 36 hour period - meant avalanche danger in steep terrain) and a place to build a snow cave. We decided to head up Center Ridge, just beyond the typical backcountry ski spots for Anchorage-ites. Bryce hauled the sled with most of the goodies most of the way (I hauled it a bit too, thank you very much), and then we found our soon-to-be-home-for-the-night. Look right there between the tree and Bryce. Bryce dug in for the initial work as I dug out a kitchen in the trees. Then we worked together to carve out our underground lair and toss the snow into a berm that Wrigley later used as a patrol post. Here is a video of home sweet home.


videoThe skiing was fun, but a lot different than anticipated. The snow kept on comin', and it made for some ridiculously slow downhill because of all the powder. It also made for some ridiculously beautiful scenery shots. You ought to head down to the area and make use of our kick-ass camp. Just look for this entrance, sans Mr. Wiggles.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Mush!

I took my Second Annual Fairbanks trip this past weekend with Jenn and Karen and Wrigley. After a long drive up to the "frozen" land (it was +40 degrees there), we unpacked in our new diggs for the weekend (thank you to Karen's friends!) and got some shut-eye. We awoke to sunshine for a day of mushing. Tom has 9 dogs at his place: Siku, Lady Lou, Haiku, Rusty, Enlo, Jerry, Smokey, and damn it, I can't remember them all. Wrigley got to join the ranks of the sled dogs that day and made no. 10 on the line. Here's a pic of him...he was so confused! He stood there looking around, and if he has thoughts, he was thinking, "What the...? What's this? Why are we all tied to this line? How come I can't turn around and jump on all these dogs? Does this mean I can't wrestle?" And before he could get his last little doggie thought out, Tom gave the team the cue to go "Hike!!" And whoosh, off they went! We were lucky enough to convince Tom to let us actually "drive" the sleds...sorta. We drove a tandem sled and man is that fun! Each of us took a ride, launched ourselves off the sled as it rocketed over berms, and ended up with bruises like you wouldn't believe. Here's a video of Jenn's take off (double click the play button on the bottom left)...
videoWe rounded out our trip with a visit to the World Ice Carving Championships. Sure, sure, the sculptures are cool, but the real reason to visit is the ice slides. Jenn's laugh describes the fun even more than words. Here is a video of our ride down the first run of the evening. video