With another disappointing snow year here in Maine, I feel lucky to have our little camp up in Vermont. There isn't a huge amount of snow up there, but definitely enough to get out on the snowshoes without feeling like its a fake. I really have an issue about using snowshoes on a surface that could be run or walked on without even sinking in a centimeter!
Sunday, Kevin, Scout, and I set out into the woods at the Victory/Burke town line. We were heading for a little mountain our map called "Little Mac." Temperatures were comfortable in the low twenties, but intermittent gusty winds and frequent snow squalls made things interesting. About an hour and a half into our hike, Kevin and I both stopped and looked at each other. It had been getting darker and darker, and now we could hear what sounded like a freight train coming over the ridge line. We were suddenly hit with blinding snow and winds that were strong enough to whip the big trees around above us. Scout, only a short distance ahead, disappeared from view as a gray curtain of snow dropped between us. When we called him he came bounding into view looking thrilled about the exciting weather.
We went on until the next intersection where we decided to turn back due to the unpredictable weather. I wanted to go on, but agreed to turn back after realizing that the area we were in wasn't like the well traveled and packed trails in the Whites. If we got off trail or stranded out in these woods, it would be a while before anyone found us, like maybe next hunting season. Instead of going back the same way we had gone in, we took a little cut off trail that was a screeching steep fast and fun downhill that took us to the North Pasture Ski Trail. The ski trail was packed well enough for me to do some running. I tried to run all the ups, which was exhausting because there were a lot of them and because I haven't been running much lately! As we headed back, the sun came out brightly and the winds died down...until about the last 100 yards which felt like we were in a wind tunnel. When we got close to the truck we saw where a big moose had been walking around just a short time earlier. We were sorry to have missed seeing him.
We sure enjoyed the crazy weather we experienced even if we didn't get to the top of Little Mac. We'll get it next time.