Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Bells Canyon Trail- May 2014

Memorial Day. A holiday that is based on reflection. One to honor those who have come before us and are no longer with us. I have always felt that honoring our departed was best served having fun in their honor. I hope when it is my time, everyone does the same for me. Me and the ladies had planned to head south for the weekend, but some things came up, so it was going to be a staycation for our family. We spent most of our weekend getting caught up on the house and projects. And being with my family is so much fun, it is kind of a vacation when we can just relax and enjoy each others company. We ultimately decided that an over nighter was in order, and we figured since we live in a very nice wilderness right here in our backyard, why not go and enjoy it! We hiked in Sunday evening, and spent some time at the lower lake, just relaxing, fly fishing, and just enjoying the evening temps. my friend Chris had just hiked up there, so we spent some time fishing and hiking the area before we parted company and we made our way of the Bells Canyon Trail. The evening light was great, and the temps were still very nice. As we were crossing a meadow, a deer came right across the trail, and we watched it forage the bushes for a minute before moving on. A few uphill sections and we crossed the bridge.

We found a nice little spot not far off the beaten path, and we set up the tent and got camp situated. The sky was clear, and relatively no wind at all. The sound of the the running water from the spring runoff was soothing. Kind of drowned out the overactive mind, and brought a sense of feeling relaxed. This is something I have missed since last falls final outing. Of course snacks were in order. Eventually we decided to turn in, and get some much needed rest. The hike out on the main trail was busy on Sunday, as I guess everyone else decided to get out and enjoy the nice weather. The temps were substantially warmer on the jaunt out, and we were all relieved to get to the car for cold drinks. What a very nice way to start off the backpacking season by heading out in the Wasatch. Let the adventures begin!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Splitboarding Albion Basin- 5.9.2014

Since Alta is now closed, and it has been snowing for two days up there, I figured why not go for a walk on the splitboard. Crazy light in the canyon to start off on the skin track. Full hot sun, then instant grauple. It did this several times as I climbed the road, then up the meadow. I got to the bottom of the Sugarloaf lift and heard a crack of thunder. I ran into a nice guy named Paul, who is a forecaster for the Utah Avalanche Center. He was kind enough to snap a pic for me. I think he was thinking what I was thinking, get outside! I climbed for a bit more, then decided with the dark clouds coming in, it was time to head down. It was heavy, wet snow all the way to the car. I got a few soft turns, but mostly had to stay in the track to keep my speed up. I made the right call, as I walked up to my car after finishing my run, huge thunder sounded off over the top of Mt Superior. Then it just started dumping grauple. This was the last day out for the season for me, unless we get some freak storm. I think the wet content in this snow is gonna make a fast melt out with the heat we are expecting in the next week. But you never know. I have had 16" of powder on May 31st before. Either way it has been a great season. Time to get out the backpack and fly rod and camera and head into the wilderness.

Albion Basin Tour 5 9 14 from Christian Paul on Vimeo.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Mayday Pow- 5.8.2014- Snowbird

Old Man Winter decided to give us a surprise 10" overnight at Snowbird. I connected with my friend Jason for one more day this season with some lift served turns. There was a small crowd to start it off, so the snow was wide open right off the Tram. After about three laps, word had surely gotten out that there was powder in them hills, so the Tram line backed up for a bit. But then Mineral was opened, then things mellowed out. I did two laps back there, then moved it back up front into Peruvian Gulch. Traffic was very light, even to say non-existent would not be a lie. Walk on Trams at that point, and a really nice stash of pow left in Peruvian to slash it up in. I made a lap out Road to Provo when they opened that area. But it had sat till nearly 1 PM, and by that time those aspects had set up quite a bit more than that the cold stuff we were riding in the AM. Still fun, but more of a hero snow consistency and roller balls of death hiding everywhere. I for sure got some unintentional air out there. Nice to finish off the lift served turns with a pow day. Some touring if we get more snow, but this was one of the last days of the season for sure. It has been a good one. It has been a great one this season. Powder, some cold smoke, but a wetter snow pack than in recent memory. I hear the mountains calling me to go backpacking and exploring. I think I will answer that call.

5 8 14 Mayday Pow Snowbird from Christian Paul on Vimeo.