I stood on a mountain as steep as a cow's face. The "winter trail", a nice name for a downward plunge, was crusty and I was carrying a heavy backpack with tools in it. Where were my trusty snowshoes? Oh. At home. Because my husband said I wouldn't need them. Despite all evidence to the contrary, he still believes I can ski.
With a sigh, I remembered the previous day's snowshoe. I have no problem slogging all day in fluffy snow to get to meadows like these.
When it comes to skiing down hills, though, I felt a familiar and frustrating fear. This fear has followed me all of my life. While I am not afraid of camping alone, animals (except occasional grizzlies), kayaking in big seas, or thunderstorms, the fear of falling never really goes away.
We had skinned up several thousand feet to clear the winter trail of blowdown and to check on the backcountry hut. I love, love, love my new skins. They allow me to climb up huge hills. But even with them on for the descent, I was afraid.
|Yep. Just over the edge, a scary fog awaits us.|
I know in my heart that it is mostly an illogical fear. Just like the people who will no longer hike on the trails here because they suspect that wolves will take them down. The problem with illogical fear is that it is just that, illogical. No matter how many times I successfully descend, I will always have it to some degree.
|This is the smile of someone who is relieved that I haven't killed him.|
|Cale looks pretty with his Happy New Year headdress.|
And yes, I'm still married. But next time I'm bringing snowshoes as a backup.