Where: working a short spring gig at Three Rivers Resort in Almont, CO
I was going to start off this blog post with a plea that someone send out a St. Bernard with a cask of brandy, to rescue us from all the snow here in Colorado. But, when I looked it up, I learned that the whole scenario is just a creation from a 19th Century painting with a not-so-catchy title — “Alpine Mastiffs Reanimating a Distressed Traveler”. Even if the whole dog/booze thing is just a myth, we are pretty much drowning in the white stuff, and a friend with some fortifying elixir would be a welcome sight!
When we arrived at the same time last year, there wasn’t a drop of snow around and the ground was completely dry. On our first day this time around, I stepped out of the RV in my sandals, sunk to my ankles in mud, and immediately changed into muck boots, which I’ve been living in every since. April and May are traditionally an off season around here, aptly called “Mud Season”, when the skiing is over, but the hiking and biking trails are still just troughs of slop.
But, it’s alright, because we’re doing spring cleaning on the 50-odd cabins at the resort, which is always good for a solid butt-kicking, no matter how in shape you feel before you start. These are top to bottom, scrub everything, move everything, and remove every speck of dirt assignments. Some of the cabins have been nightly rentals over the winter, and therefore, were cleaned regularly, between each reservation. Others were 6 month rentals, popular with the employees of the ski town just north, and pretty much look like you might imagine after groups of young folk move out. So, besides working, we’ve really only been going to the library and then taking easy saunters around the neighborhood. Here’s some views….
Thank goodness the resort owns a frontloader, because it would have been hell to shovel out our site by hand:
The path to work:
Perhaps because of all the snow, the road next to us is much quieter than last year, and it’s a very pleasant stroll to follow it between the Taylor River and the granite spires across the street:
The sky here can be a funny thing. In one direction, the resort looked like the frozen tundra…..
…..while a 180 degree turn showed a decent spring sky and slightly melting snow:
I do love a pine tree in early morning light:
Up on the hill above Almont:
The truly incomprehensible part is the strength of the sun. On clear, calm days, it’s completely comfortable to be out in shorts and a t shirt, and we even managed to get in a Vitamin D session on a day with particularly robust solar energy. This photo is not just staged; I was able to lay out for a half hour and feel warm!
While we did have a couple wickedly cold days with highs barely above freezing, the general trend is in the right direction, and the snow is melting quickly. Below is the difference from one week to the next. Progress! :
The hills above the river are just loaded with herds of Mule Deer and Bighorn Sheep; they are down at lower elevations because their usual stomping grounds are still under snow. Every day we see at least 20-30 of them browsing just a couple hundred feet away, right across the river:
Up next: the passes clear, the sun comes out, and we head to a hot springs outing!