Friday, February 22, 2008

More fun on skis

Katja and I have been busy exploring the winter wonderland of Bush Alaska as much as the blizzard filled month of February will allow. We have had 3 serious storms in Feb. already. One of the storms we delayed school for two hours, because you couldn’t see past your hand and the temps were 45 – 50 below zero. The wind has been unrelenting, which in turn transforms all the snow we have into a giant hard packed ruffles potato chip. It makes the skiing extremely difficult.

Today was the first powdery day that we have had in the month of Feb. so far. Katja and I left the house around 8: 15 am and made it to the top of the mountain by 9 am, just as the sun was rising. The weather has warmed up this weekend, so I was able to stand up on the hill and take a couple of photos without getting cold.

The contrast between the sky and the snow is virtually indistinguishable, so when it comes to getting back down the hill, it is almost impossible to see dips, bumps, drop offs, etc. In other words, I spend a lot of time brushing snow off myself after wiping out. If the powder is good, it is totally worth it and I usually end up going back up to the top for another run.

If you look carefully at the second picture, you may be able to see the power lines far off in the distance (towards the middle of the picture). That is my guide for getting down. I follow the power lines toward the right, back to the village. The other power lines going off toward the far hill go to Nightmute (another village about 16 miles away).

Katja, as always, is barking, growling, and encouraging me to go faster and faster. I appreciate her enthusiasm. She appreciates my efforts.

Thanks for following our adventures.
Until next time,
Keep exploring!

Dirk and Katja