A new ski season is nearly upon us and we shouldn’t let Covid 19 keep us closed up indoors.  Even as last season saw a cessation of official tours by the club there were plenty of opportunities to enjoy the mountains and get together with friends in activities where responsible social distancing was easy to maintain.  I’m particularly thankful for a number of hikes and ski trips we did in areas that were heavily impacted by the fires.  

Jim, Justin, Bianca, and I did the 12 mile hike and ski into Jefferson Park in mid-May.  The Whitewater fire heavily burned the trail head and much of the forest on the way in but the Park itself was as beautiful as ever and the skiing was great.  I’m pretty sure we skied more than half the total mileage and I’m glad we got to share this gem with Justin before he had to move back east for a new job.  According to reports, the Park was spared the ravages of the latest fire but I expect more of the hike in will be charred.  But who knows, maybe the lack of canopy will open the possibility of an early winter trip.

2 weeks later we did the annual Tam McArthur ski.  This was a couple of weeks earlier that we often manage to get there and the snow was great, the air clear, and the views outstanding.  Jim, Bianca, and Fiona joined me for this outing.  It’s always fun to share this extraordinary experience with a newcomer.  I’ve yet to have anyone consider this anything short of a peak experience.  Other than the steep climb for the first mile the rest of the terrain offers ski routes that can be managed by the moderate skier or challenging for the tele inclined.  The vistas are unparalleled.  

Jim, Bianca, and I hiked French Creek Ridge on July 11.  This area far above Detroit was covered in rhododendron and some nice wildflowers.  The view down on Detroit was something we won’t see again for many years.  I’m sure the trial is also significantly lost for some time to come as is Bianca’s favored Sardine peak hike.  

But a new season begins, and new challenges can be pursued so contact those you trust and are comfortable skiing with and meet up on the snow for some great skiing.

Bob Young

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