January 17, 2013

Mountain Snowshoe

A warmer than usual January has been at our doorstep this month, but when fresh snow falls, I'll surely take advantage of it. Waking up to nearly a foot of snow overnight - the decision was unanimous - outdoors we go! Luckily we were able to slip away to Douglas Mountain, about an hours drive from home. Unpacking the snowshoes from the truck, we went off in search for the summit. Reportedly a stone look-out tower (built earlier in the century) will mark the peak. Adventure - what I call a good afternoon.

This trip provides a chance for me to become more familiar with some gear I've been waiting to use:
Snowshoes have a way of making a 3 mile hike feel like an entire afternoon workout.


Stopping to see the depths of holes carved by a local Woodpecker. The wind today is brisk and I've folded down the fleece lined ear flaps for warmth. Some of these holes are rather recent.

A small spring-fed spring flows across our path. We pause briefly to watch the cool water flow over snow covered rocks and make it's way South.


Ice is just now forming near the source of the spring. The snow clings to the rocks, waiting for ice to take over the width of the stream. 

 The job of a man is never done. Quickly lifting a few trees out of the path....

Lunch hour. I loosen the straps of my pack and rest it against a birch tree. We spot a downed tree that will make for a bench. We brush the snow from our seats.

Locally-made pepperjack cheese and crackers. Good for what ails you.


Sliding the CRKT Knife back in it's sheath, we tighten the straps of our snowshoes and continue up the trail. For some of us who despise cardio, it's a painful elevation gain.

The view begins to appear through an opening in the treeline. 

 A small staircase leads to a small observation deck situated on top of the tower. We peel off our snowshoes and make our way up. 
 
 Views of Sebago Lake and the flat surroundings to our East.

 Snow-covered mountains can be seen West. The eye can see as far as Mt. Washington in New Hampshire. Surprised by the grandness of the view, we take a few moments and silently take it in.


 Snowshoes with a view.

   
Up here the air seems cleaner, the soul seems more alive and the smile is glued on. Another warm and satisfying journey through the woods.

7 comments:

Tom said...

My outdoor life is vicariously lived through you Rhon.

-Tom

Arizona Wanderings said...

Beautiful pictures, Rhon. Thanks for sharing.

Ben

Rhon Bell said...

Tom,

Very kind of you. Appreciate that.

Rhon

Rhon Bell said...

Hey Ben,

I can say the same for your blog as well man. Thank you.

Rhon

Moose Huntah said...

Rhon - you've captivated my wife and I for months now. Keep all this up. Great photos and writing.

sweet harvest moon said...

Great pictures! Went snowshoeing this weekend too!

Rhon Bell said...

Sara,

How much snow has fallen over there? Always a worth-while workout! Take care.

Rhon