Monday, January 21, 2013

BackYard Backcountry: A Much Needed Escape into the Killington Woods

The town has been crawling with people.
Skiers & Snowboarders have been flocking to Killington,
eager to enjoy the amazingly favorable weather we've been having.

Don't get me wrong.
We've been enjoying it, too.
And the business that comes with.
But sometimes, you need a break.

To pull back from the craziness of life on the Access Road.
A Return to the Simpler things in Life.
A Return to Nature.
A Rejuvination.

So one night after work at the shop,
we packed up the sled,
Strapped on our snowshoes...
and headed out the back door.

And found ourselves deep in the
Calvin Coolidge State Forest

As the suns set,
we flicked on our headlamps
and enjoyed what has horrified so many off the backside lately:
the Vermont woods at night

The air is so still,
the forest so silent.
We saw footprints, but would hear and see no animals.
All we could hear was the light floof of our snowshoes in the fresh snow.

The ridgeline,
normally so visible in the daylight hours
quickly vanished.
We were forced to rely
on our map skills and memories
to find our way to our destination.

But it was wonderful.
Except for the sled dragging behind me.
Especially maneuvering around tight trees
over few brooks and streams
and then pulling the damn thing uphill.

But one day I will learn patience.
I hope.

Just as Vespi's tummy startd grumbling we arrived at our destination.
The summit of some random mountain in the middle of the forest.
Just a slight upslope, quite unremarkable save for the increased density of pine trees.
There were no blazes, no markers -
Just an old ragu jar, hanging from a tree.

So we signed in our names in the little spiral notebook that had been stuffed in the jar,
noticing that no one had been here since July.

And that it was a lot warmer then.

The next hour is spent focusing on the necessities of life.
Shelter.
Warmth.
Food.
And fast.
before our internal body temperatures begin to match that of the outside.

But soon we are nestled in our down jackets and sleeping bags,
snuggling close so that i can return
some dexterity to my fingers
before lighting the stove.

I rub them,
i blow on them,
and stick them under my long johns to absorb some of the heat from my core.
And soon I am ready to touch the metal
and try not to set fire to the tent
while I prime the stove.

Eventually, the water boils
and our dinner of rice pasta, pesto & sausage
disintigrates into a gooey mess.
Definintely not how i had imagined it
while I was packing
but cheesey and warm just the same.

it goes Perfect with the hot toddy
that I carried in my thermos
And I sink further and further
down into my sleeping bag

We can hear the wind rustling through the tree tops
as we read our books to the light of headlamps
And nothing in the world matters
...except staying warm

We rise with the light of the sun
shining mellowly through the tent walls
42.0
Degrees in the tent.
Not too bad, considering :)

I shudder about sliding
into my snowboots probably frozen
waiting for me in the vestibule.

The thought of hot banana waffles
when we arrive home
eventually pulls me from my bag
as does the call of nature

We wandeer through the woods
for a few more hours
Back to the real world,
to the Access Road
and the roar of snowguns
Back to heated homes
and wonderfully warm showers.

Then we grab our skis
and head out to the mountain.




2 comments:

  1. This sounds like a most amazing mini-retreat. Thank you for sharing your two-planked adventures! I love following along!

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    Replies
    1. Glad to hear you're enjoying our adventures!! Hopefully we'll have more exciting tales as the season unfolds!!

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