Christmas Chalet

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas. I enjoyed my holiday with Tanner and good friends Jason and Elizabeth at our own little mountain chalet on Mt. Hood... the cabin is situated far from the parking area, so to get there you have to strap on packs, tow along a sled, and snowshoe over two miles of snowy hills!

Tanner and I had Christmas Eve off, so we packed our sled with a large bin of food, two sets of skis and boots, and clothes for the weekend, and set off. The trail was covered in hard packed ice, which made the heavy sled easier to pull over the many hills along the way. We arrived at our adorable cabin, unpacked, and then trekked the sled back out to the parking area to meet Jason and Elizabeth later that evening. They loaded up more food, clothes, games and two sets of snowboards, and for the third time, we snowshoed back to the cabin - this time by headlamp - and settled in for the night.

On Christmas morning we woke early and loaded up our ski gear onto the sled. We snowshoed the one-hour trek back to the car (we were quickly learning that even though we were only six miles from the ski slopes, it took just as long to get there as it did driving the 60 miles from Portland!) and arrived on the mountain just in time for it to start snowing!

The slopes were quickly covered in a fresh layer of powder, but the wind was fierce and the terrain difficult to discern in almost white-out conditions, so we only stayed a few hours before going home to our cabin. The snow was still coming down in buckets, and we discovered that our well-worn track to the cabin was a whole new adventure with a fresh cover of white!

It was only 2:30 pm, but we had already snowshoed five miles with heavy gear and spent the afternoon on the slopes. Christmas evening was spent making cinnamon rolls, a large lasagna, and cobbler, playing board games, stoking a warm fire in the furnace, and watching the snow softly fall outside our windows.

The next day we were up early and made our way through a new, deep layer of snow beneath blue skies. Though the trek was gorgeous and I would have liked to enjoy it more, we had a day of work ahead of us, and a timeline to meet. Despite that we were on the trail by 7:30, loading the sled with two trips worth of gear made the journey more wearisome. It must have weighed close to 150 pounds, plus the packs each of us carried, and the new friction of heavy snow beneath our feet. The trek out was all uphill, and we were soon stripped to t-shirts in the 20 degree morning to battle our excursion.

It took us two and a half hours to cover the two miles, and from there we said goodbye to our little chalet in the woods and returned to the real world. What a lovely Christmas weekend.