Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Powder hounds and me.




With all the snow we have received in the last four days (36 inches) you probably think that this post will be an ode to powder.  Nope! What good is powder to me.  We have more fresh snow than I am tall!   I need scuba gear  to breathe as I walk through my neighbourhood. Sure it is wonderful  for you humans but powder simply means I get left at home more often and for longer periods of time.



We dropped by Ulli’s house the other day to practice some chorale music and I noticed her face was as brown as a berry.  She admitted she has a deep addiction, no pun intended, for  powder.  Her singing and teaching continued to be excellent even though she was exhausted from all her skiing on the mountain.  For me it was just heavenly lying in the sunshine under the piano bench as owner warbled and squeaked her way through a few songs.  When you leave things up to owner life falls apart.  She knew darn well I wanted photos of Ulli giving a music lesson but no…she had to go and forget the camera.

image  Anyway, while resting in the warm sunbeams I came to the conclusion that I need a summer respite, a vacation from winter, a foot-freezing free zone.  Luckily this coincides perfectly with owner’s quest for more winter up in Alaska next week. I’m heading South to the warmer climes of Dry Bones Basin.  I drifted off to Ulli and owner harmonising to What A Wonderful World. Visions of previous, or should I say precious, summer hikes drifted through my head as my bones warmed in the comfort of her welcoming home.

Thoughts of old hikes I’ve taken with owner aDSCF1608nd curly haired and Benj made me sift through some of our old photos.  David, our once  computer-game addicted boy, never wanted to hike with us.  He would tell us he was too tired to hike as he was weary from long on-line battles he had waged that afternoon.  In our minds he didn’tCIMG0088 know what he was missing, six foot flowers, raging waterfalls; in his mind we were crazy to want to go outside and just walk uphill for hours.  Fool! was the thought of both camps.


Susie Bear Creek 006

Blue Lakes Ridgway Trail 018

Angelic water fall (Bridal veil left chute)



We’ve hiked with snow on the ground and  snow bridges to cross. We’ve hiked when thunderstorms loom and we are racing as hard as wBlue Lakes Ridgway Trail 045e can to get home before lightning strikes. We’ve hiked by fabulous  waterfalls. We’ve hiked only to be told a bear is up ahead – never seen it/him yet but the humans sure start talking loudly. We’ve hiked and run out of water….oops! We’ve hiked and wished we had an extra dried out past its due date energy bar to share. We’ve hiked when the humans are happy; we’ve hiked when someone (usually owner) gets snarly. We’ve hiked with blisters;  we’ve hiked with sore toes; we’ve hiked with a broken shoe lace…you name it we’ve done it! OK, we don’t backpack….but get off our back! We’ve hiked and then the humans have talked and laughed about the day’s adventure overBlue Lakes Ridgway Trail 043 dinner…over and over and over again.  Every little tribulation we have overcome has made our hikeP1010183 more rewarding.  We have hiked with Yael wretching and vomiting for a large portion of the trail…but when it was over, even she indulged in a taco at the taco stand and said, “But we had fun, right!”. Yes, Yael, we did! 

For now dreams of hiking are all I have to sustain me through these chilly winter months.  I love snow; I do. however, sometimes my arthritis kicks in and I need to remember warm summer days.  My body is getting older and not as limber as it once was.  Every year the vet tells owner that perhaps I’m only good for a couple of miles.  Hopefully this summer I will still have the strength to hit the trails and enjoy what Telluride has to offer.  If not, memories, photos and pleasant dreams each evening of the wonderful times I’ve had out in the mountains will get me through my emotional trauma.  For now, I’ll simply sift through the powder and enjoy the remains of winter.

Did I mention that Don taught me such great sniffing skills that I recently dug a discarded sandwich out of a snowbank…and ate it before owner could tear it from my death grip!  Guess powder ain’t’ so bad!  See ya later.


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