Monday, January 16, 2012

Snatching adventure from the jaws of the couch!

After over a month of fantastic winter weather, conditions are changing, clouds swirling, ice forming on the high peaks.  I awoke to low grey skies, damp ground, and this:

Hmmm...sub-optimal riding conditions.  For days I'd thought today was the start of the spring semester, but on working over my class materials, I realized that today was Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday--no school.  So, better celebrate it Scotty style.  But the fog, the cold, the damp...The couch was calling, good books aplenty, more coffee.  Must. Fight. Sloth.   Jodi and are are contemplating a week-long hike along the Pacific Crest Trail in early April, weather permitting, and Django needed a workout, so suit up and head out.

The boots:

The 40 lb. pack:
The goon:
The hound:

After much shuffling about, zipping up, getting down, locking and loading, we finally got out the door, Django pitching a fit of excitement to GET OUT OF HERE!  A fire road and mist-cloaked mountains loomed above.  No one else was out.  Across the valley, before we entered the clouds, we saw a transformer explode at a substation.  Portents, signs, keep moving...  The road ascends steeply for about 1,000 ft. of elevation gain.  The pack is comfortably heavy, my warm layers keeping the cold wind at bay, and Django and I work our way upward, the mountains to ourselves.

The frost is heavy on the pine needles, the wind cutting sharp across the pass, my own personal little South Col.  The prevailing wind direction is not hard to infer!  Below is a video taken at the top.  I'm narrating the scene, but the wind makes is almost impossible to make out.  There's a "South Col" remark and such.  Dig it:

A "shadow" of wind-cast ice crystals spread across the road:

When the weather is bad, the spirit sags, and it's easy to opt out, hit the couch, flip on the boob tube/LCD/LED/whateverthehell and let the opportunity pass.  Today: Scotty and Django 1, sloth 0.

Carry on...


  1. I was on my first cycle camp of the year in those sort of temperatures. It was very brisk out even at low altitude:0)

    Good to see you and Django enjoying yourselves.

  2. Hey, Dex: I've been felled by the dread flu-plague-thingy, so Jodi's been out these days with the hound while I lay around groaning. Ugh. Been almost a week so far. I'm quite ready to be done with it!