Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Rio Grande

Have finally made it to the Big Bend of the Rio Grande - it's such a small river compared to our raging torrent in the Kootenays. It is lovely, though, and the mountains are most impressive. Last night we had a nearly full moon coming up over the Sierra del Carmen while the sun was setting over the Chisos Mountains. Temperatures are mid-70's and ever so comfortable. All you friends suffering in Canada, I need to tell you that there are mosquitoes! Saw a vermilion flycatcher this a.m. on our walk - so startlingly beautiful.

Monday, 10 January 2011

More of America's Best

Had a lovely walk this a.m. near Moab, UT. We hiked to Corona and Bowtie Arches. The trail was mostly snowfree and the slickrock wasn't in the least bit slick. We had chains to climb up a short steep section and even one ladder. (Sorry, no pictures - Dave forgot the photo cable!) These red rock canyons really are America at its best, in my opinion. The brilliant sun and blue skies are making up for the cold. I also love the fact that I experience about 90 more minutes of daylight than north of 49!

America's Best

There's something about simply crossing the border that can bring a smile to me and that is the ancient art of rural mail delivery. We came across south of Creston and the first thing I noticed stateside was a fellow driving along delivering the mail - it's so wonderfully quaint! I think Canada has done its citizens a disservice by cutting it out, but in SK it hadn't been happening for decades. The rural mailbox at the end of lane has such charm; a superbox on the side of the road near Kootenay Lake has none of it!

Monday, 3 January 2011


I've been out on the back country skis a couple of times this season, but most of the time it's a matter of putting on the cross-country gear or wearing snowshoes. I've got to say that I love the simplicity of the "light" skis and the snowshoes. There's a couple of things to load into the car, about 2 minutes of equipment attire to put on, and you're off. On Dec. 29th, we skied with the "heavy" skis and not using the skidoo did make the procedure pretty simple. I was afraid to ski the cutblock because there wasn't a ton of snow on it, but Andrea and Demitri sure make it look easy! I chose to keep walking up the FS road and enjoyed the ski down in deep enough powder to keep easy control. Every time I go out with only a small amount of equipment, I reflect on how much I enjoy the simpler experience without a lot of extra gear. The snow here is pretty good because the colder weather has made it light and fluffy. The walks through the woods are wintery and exquisite.