Sunday, December 15, 2019

Powderface & Prairie Loop December 15, 2019

Today was forecasted to be the coldest day and wouldn't you know it, this was the day we agreed upon to hit the hills for a hike.  We had a few options on the table and of those I liked the hike up to Powderface Pass the best mainly because it was the shortest drive of all the options.  We went for the early start which meant we caught the reminance of the sunrise.
It was cold!  Boy it was cold!  We were in the forest away from any sun but at least we were sheltered from any wind.  I checked all the weather reports so I knew it would be cold but I did not expect -25C and that was with no windchill!  We motored along the trail to stay warm.
 I do like how beautiful it is when it is frigid.  
 We were happy to just be sporting spikes instead of having to contend with snowshoes in the cold.
We reached the meadow where the sun shone down.  
Everything was covered in a thick layer of hoar frost and large snow crystals.  
 a close up of the crystals
 amazing designs by Mother Nature
After a few minutes warming up in the sunshine at the junction, we made a split second decision to opt out of continuing on to Powderface Pass in favour of taking the Link towards Prairie Creek Trail. The trail had been firmly packed to this point and it was much softer and loose towards The Pass.  We wanted firmly packed the whole way so The Link route it was.
 a view of the backside of Prairie Mountain
We found a spot in the sun along the Prairie Creek Trail and settled down for some lunch and to warm up again.  After lunch we checked out the area and noticed this wall.  My friend wondered about it as she is a climber.
We took off in the opposite direction instead of heading back yet.  We were keen to explore a bit.  The wide open meadow looked inviting, it was fully in the sun and it was warm here.  A little play time would assist in keeping us warm.  Like sand through the hourglass so was the snow in our arms! The snow had the sugary consistency and we worked to find a way to keep it in our hands and arms while the camera timer clicked down to toss time.   We call this "sugar toss at powder meadow"!
 We tried and tried to get it right!
My friend got it down to a science!
It was time to head on back as we still had numerous kilometres to cover.  
The sun began to slip down behind the ridge and once again it got cold.  
 I took one last look back then it was all business to get back out to route 66.
It felt just as cold when we arrived back at the car.  We got the car going to warm it up, geared down quickly then settled in to the warmth for the short drive back home.   We agreed our split second decision to avoid Powderface Pass was a wise one and we were on the same page with feeling content and fulfilled with how we saved our day!


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