Boys Weekend Boys Weekend Logo Winter 2008

March 21-23, 2008


By Bob Gifford

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Well the fun started on Friday morning when Stan, Joe and DP found themselves at the end of Beaver Meadow road. The parking lot was ringed with 10-foot high banks and there was not a track on the trail to Beaver Meadow. We had just been blessed with a storm that started as rain and then turned to snow leaving well over a foot of fresh snow. The boys set out on what must to have been the nastiest haul in ever. The sled hauling system we have developed over the years was now being tested. It took a solid 5 hours to get from the cars to the cabin. Apparently (Joe elaborate here) there were technical difficulties, 500 trees blocking the way and a little whining. I left work at 3pm on Friday and headed to the food store. Lucy had been waiting all day for something fun to happen. She rode to work and sat in the car wondering if this was some cruel joke. She saw the skis and saw the pack but now hours had passed and she had not set foot on a trail, something was amiss. I hit the Interstate and headed for Stowe. It was sunny and looked to be an awesome afternoon. I got to the lot at the trailhead about 5pm and spent a little time packing up and loading my sled. I headed up the trail and quickly realized that the 2 foot deep trench I was easily skiing along in cost somebody dearly.

After climbing through countless tree branch arches and fording sinkholes I wondered if I wouldn’t catch up with the trailbreakers. I found a PBR pounder embedded in the trail about a mile from the cabin. Things must have been rough to be loosing beer along the way. I found the whiteface trail with what looked like sled tracks leading up. Could the boys have been so spanked they actually took that right? I found broken pole corner covered with tracks. It looked like several tired sled draggers had staggered to the edge looked around and then searched for an alternate route. I just followed the route someone ended up taking and completed my trip to the cabin in a little over an hour. I found the boys huddling next to a still cool woodstove. They were not even unpacked and they looked beat. It wasn’t quite that bad but they did report a very long and difficult trip in. Lucy was now very happy We ate a pile of food Friday night with the stand out being Stan’s hamburgers with all the fixins. It seems simple but boy it tasted good. A few beers and sleep came quickly around 10pm. Shane rolled in about 11:30pm. He did the haul in with a guitar on his back. It was howling windy all night. The big dead tree hanging over the cabin is going to be the end of that cabin.

Saturday dawned clear we cranked the stove made coffee and had a bacon and egg breakfast. We headed out to the glades over past Beaver meadow. The snow was as deep as I have ever seen it. I skied up on top of both cabins without trying to hard. We found the Glades untouched and began a skin line straight up one of the lines. After about 30 minutes we were in the spruces on top so we de-skinned and descended. Awesome is all you can say. Huge open wide-open powder runs to the bottom with plenty of room for the 4 of us (DP went off somewhere else). Stan and I did 4 runs before heading back for lunch. The snow was excellent with an occasional wind slab or wind scoured spot. We exploited lines both to the right and left looking up. The last run was far right and required a nasty traverse through some pretty tight spruces. Stan threatened mutiny but it did yield a nice decent. They wouldn’t call it bushwhacking if it was easy. Shane took a nap while the rest of us cut wood. What is up with that? We ate and drank some beer and then after his little rest Shane and I went skiing again. This run was up back of the cabin. We went looking for some new lines and found some cool terrain but not much open snow. We fought back through tight spruces and ended up right back at the cabin as the sun went down. Dinner was steak, pork loin and other snacks. We killed all the beer and sat around the stove chatting. It was cold out this year with nighttime temps in the low teens. That cabin is pretty drafty so you really need to stuff the stove if you want any warmth in cold temps.

Sunday again was clear but still windy. As usual we got up ate some food, drank some coffee and some of us ran to the outhouse. The outhouse is really and excellent example. It even has little curtains hanging in the window. We packed up our junk and proceeded to rig our sleds. It seems like each year something new pops up. The Mad river Rocket popped up a few years back. It’s a simple sled and can be used with just a rope for pulling. The classic red sled also has been used pretty effectively as long as its load is light. Stan has a giant black sled, which seems to work for those 80-pound loads. DP found a military sled with fiberglass poles. It didn’t seem to work all that well. I like the rocket with a rope for up. I like to tie a stick to the sled for the decent. Anyway we headed out in a fragmented group. Shane left about 8. The rest of us pulled out about 9:30 and before long Bob and Joe were out in front. We hit the lot about 10:30 and headed off for Easter activities. Stan and DP were probably 30 minutes back taking their time enjoying the sunny day. It was another great trip with no problems.

The Highs

The Incredible snow pack with a nice powder top surface.

Blue sky days

NO visitors and no cannon needed to keep them at bay

Sports illustrated swimsuit edition

Good food!

Lucy the most excellent Camp dog

The lows

JohnBoy got grabbed by the Easter Bunny and failed to show up.

Pretty freaking cold out for spring.

Nasty beast under the cabin, not sure what it was.

Ice on all the fire wood


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