It's a perfect day up top. The mountain is still shrouded in a cloud and there are some flurries coming down. The high yesterday reached 24 degrees. The low was 13 degrees. It was 17 degrees and cloudy at 7am observation. The mountain received 2 inches of new snow, bringing our total to 8 inches. The drifts are a bit higher near the lodge. It sounds as though the roads are going to be closed for a bit. Even if they do open up, be sure to pack a headlamp and cure yourself of summit fever! The trails are SO much harder than usual, I am walking at about half my pace. Carry food within hands' reach and extra layers/socks to change into when you're feeling uncomfortable. Most importantly, use the greatest tool of all: your brain. Turn around when you're tired, preferably 2 hours before sunset. Be a hero some other day, this is dying weather.
It is FINALLY the winter wonderland up here that I'd been dreaming of for ages. More specifically, ever since I was clearing waterbars on a sweltering July day on Vermont's Long Trail... I thought about how idyllic my winter would be, painting the fine plumes of snow piled high around the lodge in my mind's eye (that would soon be my life!) and using that fluffy snowscape to run some much needed cool through my veins, all the better to keep excuses, ennui, the devil of laziness at bay. I would rest, read books, make tea, go into a fine torpor in the winter! July is for work!
As we all know, life is cyclical. Somehow in these halcyon days I'm already envisioning some unwieldy loads of bark mulch, bloody blisters on my hands from swinging my axe and chatting with Vermont's lovely hiking populace. Life is so good, I hardly know how to express it. My fingers tingle with anticipation... for both today and tomorrow.
Enjoy the Super Bowl... and the Puppy Bowl :)