Spring is a great time to get after trailwork. It is easy to see drainage issues, the ground hasn’t become summer cement and there aren’t any bugs! Last fall Rob and I did a bunch of work on the Skyline Trail in Jackson, and now that the snow has melted, it looks like we are going to have another go at it!
How do you get involved in trailwork, you ask? A lot of trailwork, you can do without any tools. See a stick on the trail that is waiting to eat someone’s derailleur? Throw it out of the way! If there is a small tree across the trail and you happen to own a silky saw (the best things ever) and carry it with you (I do in the spring), you can make easy work of it. For drainage and larger trees, it is best to find the facebook group that covers that section of trail and make a trailwork party out of a section. Everyone loves cold beers and getting their hands dirty making the biking world a better place. Plus the next time you shralp that section of trail, you will just know. Trust me.
The backcountry off Teton Pass is heavily trafficked, but you would be surprised how concentrated that traffic is around the closest tours. I guess it isn’t that surprising considering you hike less and ski more downhill with the closer lines, but I enjoy the touring part of ski touring. So I will often head out to the Claws, or even further. This weekend, since both Rob and I were recovering from the Jackson crud, we settled for the Claws and Avy Bowl.
Did I say settle? I guess that is what you call settling when you live in Jackson 🙂
Back in Jackson after our great visit to steamboat. it was back to the grind, but with a twist! I am helping with the Jackson High School robotics club! Here is a very preliminary pic of our robot! More to come…
Even though the holidays are over, we still haven’t taken down our Christmas tree/ Hanukkah bush, and don’t really intend to. It is just too much fun – note the bike parts. 10 points if you know what they are!
Early morning park adventures never get old, even in the bitter cold. Today was one of those bitter cold, wonder Wyoming windy days. We set off early, coffee in hand to drive out to the park to ski a peak called Wimpy’s. With the persistent slab, we planned to ski pretty conservatively, although there are some really cool couloirs off the backside. On the way in, we passed an early morning herd of deer and moose.
Skinning into Wimpy’s takes a bit more flat traversing than 25 Short ,and I took advantage of the time to get some skin track shots with the Tetons in the foreground.
Some days it is beautiful and sunny, and I am able to zone out for the skin track and cruise, and sometimes it is like today. Today it was bitter cold and windy. The skin track was blown in almost immediately, meaning that since rob was two switchbacks above me, we were both breaking trail. About three quarters of the way up, I needed to take a break. I took a knee to get a bit out of the wind and the steep soft skin track had obviously taken a tool on my hydration. Before I had a chance to get my water out, I had to put a hand on the ground to steady myself. Even though I wanted to take a longer break, the risk of getting chilled in the wind was too great, so I drank, ate a few bites of frozen pb&j and continued my slow motion slog to the top. That is the thing about backcountry touring. There is a fine line between too cold and sweating, between moving fast enough to be comfortable and needing to stop for food. Often, you can do a whole tour and wait until you get back to the car to chug some water and eat a ton, but that was not today.
At the top I grabbed another snack while transitioning and stashed some more calories in my pocket to snack on on the way down. Luckily, the way down was 100% worth the way up. Our tracks were the only ones out there.
Not only was the snow good on the way down, but the track out was a coast. Needless to say I took a long hot shower to warm up after Wimpy’s. Does that make me a Wimp?