Trailwork, skiing, and some thoughts

This past weekend, we worked on a morning project with the local BLM office and the Canyonlands Field Institute, putting up railings, closing social trails, and adding Carsonite posts.

PCO Joan

This site gets more traffic in recent years and the work will protect the site a bit more.

The BLM plans to put up interpretive signs and establish the site as a national historic site. Additionally, the BLM will consult with the local indigenous people to give the place a more appropriate name that reflects the culture and history of the people who lived here long before any Euro-Americans left their mark.

An argument can be made that these improvements and potential kiosks may draw more attention to the site. On the other hand, over 100 people a day visit the place during peak season, and unintentional damage is impacting the site already—a balancing act of protection vs. access vs. making a site known. I don’t have the answer, but we did some necessary work in light of the increased site visitation.

The following day we drove down to Monticello to meet some friends for dinner.

It’s been over two years since I’ve skied. Due to bunion issues, we have yet to find Nordic boots that work well for Joan. Throw in Reynauds Syndrome, and Joan, understandably, does not enjoy this outdoor activity too much.

But I miss it.

I miss gliding along on the snow, taking in the cold air, and experiencing the outdoors in a way that makes the snow fun and not something to trudge through.

While Joan, her colleague, and the children stayed local, Josh and a colleague of his and myself played up in the mountains a mere 15-minute drive from their home.

Much like riding a bicycle, I seemed to remember the ins and outs of Nordic touring. I took my trusty Asnes Combat skis for the variable conditions, which again reminded me why I enjoy these skis the most of my quiver.

Though the snow presented some crusty conditions, I grinned by the time I made it back to the truck at the bottom of the road. Frankly, I love this type of skiing and obviously missed it.

After our time in the snow, we returned to their home, where Josh showed off his superb pizza-making skills with his dedicated pizza oven, and then we noshed on some deserts we brought over.

All in all, an excellent weekend of desert and snow, hiking and skiing, and catching up with friends.


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