Today, Mr. Fatback, my amazing mountain bike for riding in snow, made it possible for me to take a trail ride on deeply snow-covered paths.
K and I rolled out into blustery cold, heading straight for a viewpoint. We had the idea that we might be able to see the mountains, unlike yesterday.
Indeed, the snow covered peaks jutted up through the swirling white clouds. Someone recently asked me why the mountains and the forest animals continue to fascinate me after I've seen them so many times. The person was obviously struggling to understand me. The truth is that the mountains mysteriously change daily and noticing the nuances makes me feel alive. And, the animals? Almost everything about them is still a mystery to me so each glimpse and photo gives me new insight.
K stuck to my side like my guardian angel today, barely straying to check scents or tracks. We seemed to float over the snow, like a pair of ghosts. I love riding with K, and I'll miss it so much during my enforced layoff after my surgery.
After I dropped off K at home, I rode up a trail that I haven't visited in at least a month.
In June, the view from the top combined bright green leaves with snow-dotted mountains.
Today, the view was much harsher, with skeleton trees and the Divide completely enshrouded in clouds. The wind gusted crazily, and a shimmering fog of snow blew across the surface of the ground. The flying crystals reflected the sun with a rainbow of sparkling colors. At one point, I crouched down to watch the blowing snow from ground-level. It was surreal so it makes sense that I couldn't capture it in a photo.
As I crouched down, I noticed brilliant splashes of red - rose hips! Many of the thorny bushes still had shriveled berries hanging from them. I've read that deer and elk love eating these berries in mid-winter.
After a much longer-than-planned ride, I returned home to find R stretched out on his bed, snoring away. Notice that his first gray hair is visible on his cheek in the photo. I wanted to join him but had things to do!
I wish you all an adventurous and peaceful new year. May you have the strength and flexibility to thrive no matter what unexpected twists and turns you encounter.
Happy New Year from your romping friends in Colorado.