Friends endlessly tease me because they know I don’t like winter for a multitude of reasons. The first is it prevents me from hiking. I spend all winter making plans, but become frustrated when the reality is months away. Gardening is also fairly limited, as well as being able to feel my hands or feet. To round it out, the roads are often terrible, which wouldn’t be so bad except that I see a whole lot of people out there who obviously failed physics. And – here is a little piece of advice – just because you have a big 4WD truck doesn’t preclude you from the physical laws of nature. But since winter is seemingly unending (another reason I grouse so much), I do try to make the best of it.
We kicked off the season by celebrating the Winter Solstice with lights around the patio and a fire in our little portable fire pit. Knowing the days will soon grow longer gives me hope.
Serious winter weather tagged along with the official start of the season, so we’re doing our best to enjoy it. The boys are making snow forts using one of the tree containers as a mold. If this weather holds, it will be impressive because they are far from finished.
This morning was particularly frosty and beautiful. Even Kelo was tinged in frost, yet was toasty beneath his blanket. He was standing in the sun when I sledded the bucket out to feed, and I’m sure his warmed, soaked feed makes him feel good even when it’s so cold.
In the afternoon, Sam joined me for about an half an hour on his new skis. The blue sky is stunning and, although we had a slight breeze and only 9 degrees, we were still plenty warm. After dropping him off back at home, I continued for another 40 minutes using it as an exercise time as much as just being outside. With so many big hikes planned for 2018, I need to grab every moment of training, even when I’m too big of a chicken to brave the whackadoodles on the road.
So far I’m keeping my spirits up despite the short days and cold. As long as I can get outside to enjoy our beautiful area, ticking down the days until the sun – and hiking season – returns will be bearable.