It’s a new year! With new possibilities, and continuing friendships. It looks as if winter has skipped us this year, but I don’t want to be to hasty in my prescription; the beginning of February can be pretty darn cold. There is in fact a cold spell coming when I look at the ten day forecast. It may even hover around freezing for the entirety of a day!

The snow is lacking this year, but the Ice climbing is off to a fair start. Of course one is not altogether independent of the other. We need some snow for ice climbing, and some good temperatures to help thaw things out. Melting and freezing, melting and freezing. Ouray’s ice was rather pitiful when I visited just after the new year, due to lack of snow. The Sangre de Cristo’s are at about seventeen percent of average this year, which is pretty bad. The river that I guided last year, the Arkansas, gets much of its flows, from Cotopaxi down, from the Sangre’s. The rest of the river basin is not often touched by drought, being fourteen thousand foot peaks around Buena Vista, and some of Leadvilles surrounding beauty. We may still have a nice high water mark mid June, but I wouldn’t expect the water levels to hold at over a thousand through August like they did last year. Most of Colorado is around fifty percent of average snowpack at this time. It seems that we, Colorado, are just hanging out in an unfortunately dry part of the jet stream for the past month.

I started dating this fantastic girl. The kind that makes you wonder how she was ever “put back on the market.” I’m still waiting for the high to end. When it turns into some droll monotony of routine that cannot be enlivened. We share much passion for the outdoors, and have similar political stances, and so I don’t see it happening too soon. Our first real date was backcountry skiing, and despite her remonstrations, she accompanied me ice climbing. She also has a keen eye for writing and literature, which I admire. I still think the hardest part in maintaining a long term relationship is the sacrifices that must be made, by both parties, in order to keep the love alive. Right now I have to sacrifice my desire to not drive, and contribute carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, so that I am able to see her more often than once a week. I imagine she will feel the sacrifice reading a poorly narrated story I’ve written(here and there) and hopefully soon a crudely shaped novel. So far it feels pretty smooth, the relationship not the novel.

The window I ordered and have been waiting on has arrived. The electical lines are laid: DC lighing and AC power outlets. Denim insulation to be ordered today, and arrive when I get back from working in Aspen. Hopefully It will be enough. I have to order by the pallet. Home depot does not get enough interest yet in denim insulation apparently to be able to buy it in reasonable quantities.

Well, hopefully the snow starts to fall soon. I have a hut trip on Feb 14 at the Sangree hut outside Leadville. Should be a fantastic Valentines day for Jill and myself. I am excited for brie and good wine at elevation in a cozy wood heated palace.

Author: Ronjohn

When I take a deep look at my ego, I see that it defines itself as a recreation bum. I ski, hike, rock climb, kayak, raft, sail, stand up paddle, mountain bike, rock climb again. I grew up in Grand Junction, Colorado. I am a vagabond extraordinaire.

1 thought on “Winter?”

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