Sunday, March 25, 2007

Our trip to the mountains

So back in December we'd reserved a cabin for ourselves during my wife's vacation. Not until the day before did we begin to hear even hints of bad weather coming, and even then we just thought it'd be nothing to worry about. But late the night before the forecasts took a change...and we realized there was no way we dared drive up a twisting mountain canyon with snow blowing as hard as they were saying.

Good thing--that was the blizzard that shut down the airport in Denver for days, that shut down the expressways all across the western plains. It gave us more than 2 feet of snow, and Estes Park, where the cabin was, at least 3 feet. Our Kia is not equipped to handle such conditions.

Well, we couldn't get a refund on our cabin, but they offered a gift certificate instead. So my wife rearranged some of her schedule to give us a 3-day weekend and make a second go. It's been such good weather here, we had visions of hiking all over, of letting our son play on the playground at the resort and wander around with us among the cabins.

And the weather was good when we first arrived...

We managed a brief hike with the rain already starting to fall, and then we returned to our very small cabin to check the weather report. Winter storm warning for Estes, 8-20 inches of snow. What? Fortunately it stayed as rain overnight, only switching to snow Saturday morning. And even then, the air and ground were so warm that most of the snow melted as it fell--there was maybe an inch total accumulated, though it was probably 3-4 inches that actually fell.

Still, slush didn't sound like a great way to drive back down the canyon this morning. So I was a bit concerned. ("We can stop if you're scared." "I'm not scared. I was...concerned, but that's not the same thing.") But then the snow stopped already in the evening, and the roads were already clear then when we ran into town mostly to see how they would be. So the drive this morning was fine. Beautiful and sunny--but why couldn't it have been like that yesterday when we wanted to go hiking? Instead we could only look out the little windows in our cabin and catch the occasional glimpse of part of a mountain peeking through the clouds or fog or snow.

We have another cabin reserved over on the western slope in a little over a month when my parents visit, and now I'm nervous what will happen then. Are we cursed?

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