Sunday, January 22, 2012

Feelin' the Love

After a weekend spent surrounded by good people, I'm feeling the love.

This beautiful mountain community that I live in, currently buried under the white blanket of winter - is populated by amazing folks.  Over the 7 years that I have lived in Banff, I found that it didn't take long to connect with like-minded people.  Our collection of fun and fantastic people has continued to grow and the friends we have made in  the Bow Valley never cease to amaze me.  Young and old, I love these mountain people.

I enjoy people who love the mountains and who appreciate them as much as I do.  You don't have to be a crazy endurance athlete to enjoy and appreciate mountain living.  All of us mountain lovers share the same sense of wide wonder when we gaze upon the beauty and the vastness of the immense wilderness that surrounds us.  We are all connected by this. I just like to connect with it by feeling it under my feet, seeing it with sparkling eyes-wide-open and hearing it in the sound of crunching snow.

This weekend I got to enjoy the good company of these like minded folks and realize:  Damn.  I live in a great community.  I spent part of my day today volunteering at the Lake Louise to Banff Loppet and reconnecting with many of my friends in the Bow Valley.  The end-of-the-race party is my favorite part - a room full of good people and good energy.  A room full of the warmth of a community and of good friends.

My weekend has Slam-Bam full of reconnecting with good peoples.  As well as my super day today, I got out for a ski tour with Suzy and Monica on Friday and I got enjoy some quality time in with Super Angela.  We hit the road this morning for a few hours of run time.  It's also been All About Winter.  This week we saw -34c temperatures and a new blanket of snow covering the pine forest.  Fortunately, we broke out of the deep freeze this weekend so we could all get out and play.

Me and Suzy - getting ready to ski.

Fluffy Powder in Chickadee Valley

I'm loving up the ski touring - I always have - but it's good to be out enjoying winter in this way.  It's pretty magical - I mean, how many people get to do this?

All smiles, with Monica

I've got the whole winter to enjoy this sport - we ski here well into May and I'm planning on enjoying it.  I've been a life long skier and while I may not be using a chair-lift much these days, I still love it as much as when I was a young ski-bum. :)  I reckon the main difference is I just don't drink as much beer.

Ladies of the Bow Valley Unite!!!

Today, I did a run with Angela which has almost become a January tradition for me.  Every year, I take a road run on Highway 1A and it's awesome.  I don't know why I don't do it more often.  Keith dropped us off at Johnston Canyon and we ran home.  One of my favorite thing about running the 1A is looking for animal foot prints.  Today we saw lots of coyote prints, deer, elk and wolf.  And little critters too - like mice, voles, squirrel and pine marten.  I'm always scanning for prints - it's one of my favorite things about winter.  My friend the divine Ms. Ellie saw a Lynx today while skiing from Lake Louise to Banff.  A Lynx is a pretty special sighting - I've only ever seen 2.  Such a lucky girl!

It's a secondary highway.

Angela doing her Angela Thing.

Arriving back in Banff on Vermillion Lakes Road

Feeling the Love!!

Fenland Trail

Done!  O.K - I didn't ski from Lake Louise to Banff, but I'm awfully impressed by those who did!

There were also lots of friends participating in the ski loppet today - it's a very special race.  They only groom this trail once a year to create this epic 70km Cross-Country ski race from Banff to Lake Louise.  Maybe one year, I'll dust of my cross-country skis and give-it-a-go.  Congrats to all who finished and the stand-out performances of my friends Liza Pye and Blaine Penny!  Both of these ridiculously talented athletes (and ultra-marathoners) finished at the top of the heap today.  Congrats, Y'all. 


HappyTrails said...

That looks awesome! Good times for sure, and glad to see you guys getting the white stuff. Pretty slim so far down here but hoping the mountains get some fresh whites in the coming weeks. BTW, we thought for a bit that you two might forsake the cold country and move to the southern hemisphere - looks like you're staying though!!!

Mary said...

What a great place you live in! I'm coming there someday..

Olga said...

Beautiful white fluff!!! And awesome community to enjoy it with!

Brian said...

Lucky girl! Thanks for giving this snowless (so far anyway) flatlander a faint whiff of the mountains.

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic weekend after those freezing temperatures. Give me snow! 100 mls rain has fallen since 2pm yesterday and 250 since Sunday night. The Golf course 1 big lake.

Helen said...

Did you guess who Anonymous was? I was sure I had typed my name!!!

Leslie said...

Hi Steve and K!! Damn, y'all are having the craziest non-winter ever. Can't get over that you're still running on dry trails with the odd little icy patch. It's a good thing we like winter so much - but there will be more traveling in our cards, we've only just got started. :)

Hi Mary!
...and I'm coming to visit you and the Hells Canyon Wilderness some day soon. I'll pitch my tent in the yard seeing you have no rooms. :) You've got an open invite - you could make Banff happen as soon as this summer if you like

Hi Olga! Yup, the friends, neighbors, young folks and old folks of Banff ROCK. In winter, I get to go out with hardcore old farts - and we're always introducing new young folks to ski touring as well. We're always growing the "friends to play with" collection!

Hi Brian! Snow-less? Really? What's that like? I live in the bubble that is Banff and sometimes I forget how unique it is. Winter will be here until May - it's a long time, so we'd might as well embrace it.

Hi Helen! Damn, that's a lot of moisture. Is that normal for this time of year? It's normal to get high humidity and moisture in January right? That sounds like a ridiculous amount of rain.