Sunday, April 20, 2008

Make Hay While the Sun Shines

I love living in Cascadia, but it is not without problems. Often one of the most challenging aspects of life in the Northwest - on a daily and weekly basis - is choosing your recreation du jour. This is especially challenging in the spring as longer and warmer days bring life to the flora and waterways of this region. Of course, there is always something to paddle throughout the year up here, but when the flowers start coming up, you know that the plethora of choices is about to explode like a tulip bloom on a sunny spring day.

Of course spring is also a time of year when people start looking to get on their bikes with more frequency, or head for the east side to soak up some vitamin D at their favorite crag. Additionally, spring storms often remind us that winter does not want to fade into the past as huge swell pounds the coast and snow continues to blanket the mountains. Finally, the ocean is always there offering up some of the world's best sea kayaking. On any given day, the choices of how to go play in the wilderness can create a sort of paralysis - sometimes referred to as the Seattle Disease.

In the past I have dealt with this decision making process in two ways: keeping the number of activities I participate in low and placing quality above quantity. This year I might be breaking rule #1 as I feel tempted to dust off the rock climbing equipment and "pull down" whereas in the past I would simply keep my garage filled with only ski and kayak gear. We'll see how that goes. I am also being tempted by friends to buy a surfboard and sea kayak. Pretty soon I'll need a yakima rack with so many accessories that I can't actually put anything on it.

Skiing has the unique aspect of powder, which is finite in both quantity and quality. When it's good, it's only good for a short time - especially here in the lower elevations of the cascades - and can be enjoyed by others before you get the chance to indulge. Thus, I usually let powder skiing trump kayaking as I know that Robe will be running for several more months this year and the forest roads will soon melt out allowing access to all the other local delights. And, the highest quality of snow will quickly be a thing to only look forward to for next year.

As the forecast calls for yet another winter storm (with possible snow in Seattle!) this weekend, I am looking forward to another lap in my newest favorite tour: The Slot Couloir. Below are a few pics from some recent trips. Enjoy.

Dale dropping in

Dr. Timmy taking his turn

Photo by Jason Salvo

Our token splitboarder and resident dirtbag

Dr. Daniels fills her powder prescription

Exiting the couloir and opening up some speed for the apron

Tim coming in hawt!

Becca goes for more

One of the finest lines I have ever skied!

Time to go home

Photo by Tim Holmberg

No comments: