“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.”
― Edith Sitwell
I woke up first.
I always do.
It was a restless night of alternating hot and cold, our legs aching still from the efforts of the night before. Muscles I didn’t know existed ached.
But I woke with the sun, heated some water and made tea, and enjoyed it whilst watching the sunrise hit the peak of Mt. Sneffels [alternately my truest love and my closest nemesis].
I even sat, meditated, and with my eyes wide open watched my beloved Matt sleep, quite contentedly.
Once he did awaken, we discussed THE PLAN for the day.
It had, originally, consisted of snowshoeing around the area…checking out what the Blue Lakes trail might be like this time of year, as well as Cocan Flats…things that we had seen on our earlier hike in the area and watched to discover in the winter… but we were still exhausted.
The call of delicious beers, hot springs, and sleeping in our own bed was stronger than the call of adventure.
So we restocked the firewood [my first time splitting logs all by myself!!!! I was such a he-woman!], cleaned up really well, shoveled trails to the loo and woodpile, turned off the propane, and headed out.
Though it was much faster going out, thanks to my trailblazing on the way in, the sore muscles continued to ache, and it felt as though the trail would never end.
And it doesn’t, does it? It’s like it says in The Lord of the Rings:
The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
Just substitute ‘road’ with ‘trail’ and you have a perfect metaphor for life.
We met with a group headed in and upon discourse with them discovered they were headed into the hut. We were so happy to tell them we cut the trail, left them plentiful firewood, and bid them well.
Needless to say, we no longer held regret at our decision to exit when a larger group was headed in, and we would have shared the space with them. Doesn’t really fit with my idea of a totally romantic Christmas Vacation in the mountains.
Once we reached the car it was but a short deal to achieve a table at the Ouray Brewery followed by the immaculate hot springs pool and vapor cave of Wiesbaden.
We found heaven.
Here I am eating oatmeal for breakfast.
My view out of the compost toilet this morning. Amazing. Here I am at the Blue Lakes trailhead.
Matt’s amazing pano of the San Juans.
I asked Matt to take this one for me…
ALL PHOTOS ABOVE CREDIT TO MATT JANSON PHOTOGRAPHY
A shot of the Mt. Sneffels summit as sunrise hits the peak. It was pretty amazing as the wind gusts would come and make tiny avalanches with the snow off the of the trees.
Matt and I about ready to head out!
Here we stopped so Matt could take an amazing shot of West Fork of Dallas Creek. He is amazing.