Sunday, November 3, 2013

shoulder season

Posting has been light around here lately because outdoors activities have been a little light - I didn't go MTBing the entire month of October! that's terrible! - due to the vagaries of Utah's autumnal weather.  You can have clear and warm, or clear and cold, or raining and cold, or snowing and cold, or just overcast and cold ... and the trick is to sync up your preferred activities with the weather.

This last weekend was a perfect example.  Saturday was mostly glorious with clear skies, abundant sunshine and mild temperatures.  But since the weather was due to change, we couldn't really get out and enjoy it because this was possibly the last chance we had to put the yard away for the winter.  We raked, mowed, edged, cleaned out the gutters, pulled weeds and cleaned out tomato pots.  After the chores were done, we swung by the Wasatch Powder House to pick up our Alta season passes (new photos, thank goodness) and then headed up Little Cottonwood Canyon.  Snowbird was having "Customer Appreciation Days" and, like last year, if you brought cans of non-perishable food, to be donated to the Utah Food Bank, you got a free tram ride.  And who doesn't like a free tram ride?

Looking east from the top of Hidden Peak

It was pretty busy up at the top of Hidden Peak, with lots of families and couples milling about in various degrees of appropriate clothing.  There was a decent amount of snow up top - over my hiking boots in spots - and the wind was picking up, bringing in the low pressure system from the west.  An ambitious young couple had brought lunch to eat at one of the picnic tables; but since they didn't think to bring warm jackets as well, their picnic was a non-starter.  From the tram, we saw quite a few tracks in the snow: not just deer and coyotes but also skiers and snowboarders, folks eager enough to get out there that they were willing to hike and skin up above the snow line.  Good for them!  But I'll wait until Alta's chairs start turning, thank you.

Snow starting to accumulate under Little Cloud chair

It was clouded up by the time we started heading back down the canyon and the wind really picked up into the evening, bringing the last of the leaves down from our tree and ruining the neatly-raked lawn we'd been so proud of.  Sunday morning: snow down in the valley.  It didn't last but the clouds settled into the Wasatch mountains - and that means that ski season is just around the corner.

1 comment:

  1. In this kind of weather, activities that you can do are really limited. Good thing you found a great trick to make this cold, boring day into a productive one - raked, mowed, edged, cleaned out the gutters, and more. Now I have an idea what to do when this season comes in again. Thanks for sharing.