Mirror Pond

72 Inches in 72 Hours

Saturday morning we woke up to sunshine and snow falling! I was glad it wasn’t raining. The flakes falling were light and fluffy. I turned on the gas fireplace (I loved that thing) and made us breakfast. Thankfully I packed a bunch of food for us. I love staying in places with kitchens!

 

Breakfast was bagel thins toasted with cream cheese and smoked salmon. We split a large navel orange and then got dressed in our snow gear.

From Sunriver it was only about 12 miles up to Mount Bachelor. The snow was heavy and covered everything in a blanket of sparkling white.

We parked at the Edison Butte Sno-Park and that’s where we went snowshoeing. The snowshoeing book I bought recently discussed this particular trail and recommended it. It was classified as “easy” and around 3.5 miles long total.

It was a popular place for snowshoers. There were a bunch of different trails and loops to choose from.

A few days before we arrived in Bend, Mount Bachelor got 72 inches in 72 hours! They even shut Bachelor down for a day or two.

There was SO much snow! I’ve never seen so much. It was fresh snow too–soft and deep, not compacted or frozen. We discovered quickly that we sank into the off-trail snow pretty much to our knees!

A trail had been forged in the fresh snow but the trail was narrow and barely wide enough for snowshoes. Michael struggled a lot because his shoes are bigger than mine. We set out on the trail. It was a lot of up and down hills. We trekked through the trees and were dwarfed by them. I love the Ponderosa Pines and how they look in the snow.

The sky was a cornflower-blue-gray but it was clear. It didn’t snow much while we were out there until we turned around.

I’m not sure how far we snowshoes on Saturday. We ended up turning around and doubling back instead of completing the loop.

The trail was getting very difficult and the snow was so soft we were sinking into it. We turned around. It was mostly uphill the way back.

We got back to the parking lot. I was feeling good and could have gone further on another trail but Michael’s hip was bothering him so we called it a day. It was better to cut it short and be able to snowshoe the next day than have him crippled!

Stats:
Time: 1:50
Calories Burned: 570
Distance: ? No idea–maybe 3 miles total?

We returned to Sunriver to clean up, change and eat leftover pizza for lunch. Then we went to downtown Bend to walk around and shop (mostly window shopping).

We also walked around Bend and Mirror Pond, then grabbed a beer (Boneyard IPA was my favorite beer of the weekend).

We went to Amalia’s for dinner. It was a Mexican place in Old Town. It was packed! The food was pretty good. I had a pork enchilada. I was good– I wanted to eat it ALL but I ate half and saved the rest! Go me! Michael got the chorizo and steak tacos.

We got back to our rooms at Sunriver and Michael went to bed. He was hurting pretty bad. I stayed up for a few hours editing my book by the fireplace. It was a great day.

QUESTION: What’s the most snow you’ve ever been in? 

Shelter in a Storm

Sunday morning I woke up and we got the continental breakfast at the hotel. For being free and a buffet, it was pretty decent. I got one of the small waffles, scrambled eggs and a piece of bacon. Then I got a bowl of yogurt with granola and fresh pineapple.


We got dressed in our snow gear. I got to try out my new snow pants! I love them. They were most definitely water proof. 😉

Yes it was raining on Sunday as well. Oh well. We were determined to have fun with our snowshoes despite the rainy weather. We drove to Mt. Bachelor to do the Virginia Meissner trail. We parked at the Meissner Sno-Park and headed out. It was recommended by a coworker who cross-country skis and he was right on. This trail was wonderful! By far it was the best part of the weekend.

We set out on the trail. It was clearly well-maintained and a very popular spot for skiers. I think if we decide to try cross-country skiing next winter Meissner is where we’ll go. The trail was pretty flat and level with some small hills.

Michael did something very sweet and romantic: he took my gloved hand in his gloved hand and we trekked together. Aww…The rain wasn’t too heavy and our rain gear was holding up.

We were the only snowshoers on the trail that day but that wasn’t a problem. There was plenty of room for us. We made sure not to walk in the ski tracks. We got to the top of a hill and found a fork in the road. I saw a sign. It looked like we were almost to the Shelter. Ahead of us on the trail were heavy, dark gray clouds. It looked like we were about to get drenched in a storm so we hurriedly made our way to the shelter.

Half a mile up the right fork in the road was a log cabin amidst the trees. Rounding the side of the cabin we found a few skiers warming themselves next to the wood stove. There were benches inside and space to spread out and dry off.


We dried off our gloves and hats near the fireplace and relaxed for a bit while we let the storm pass.

The cabin had a view of the hills and trees in the distance. I relaxed on a bench near the fire.

The fire was so warm and cozy. I commented that it would have been the perfect place to have lunch before setting back out. Unfortunately we hadn’t known about the shelter–or the storm–so we didn’t bring any food. Next time we do the trail we’ll most definitely bring food and snacks to relax in the cabin and eat.I think with food in us we could have gone longer.

My new pants worked great and were very waterproof. In fact all of my rain gear worked well. My boots? Not so much. Unfortunately I just have hiking boots. Normally that would be okay for snowshoeing but the rain was not a good thing. My boots were leaking and my socks were getting a little wet. I tried to dry the boots out near the fireplace before we started back to the car.

The skiers in the cabin with us offered to take some photos of Michael and I together before they set out into the snow. We happily posed because we rarely have the opportunity to get photos together.

The skiers took off and we had the cabin to ourselves for a bit.

Soon we were joined by another group of skiers taking refuge. Michael and I decided to make our way back to the car. We packed our stuff up, I took a few more photos and we were off.


Goodbye romantic cabin in the woods! We zipped up and trudged back through the snow to the car.

I think the weather had scared off most of the skiers we saw earlier. It was pretty quiet out there in the woods with just the sounds of our own breathing and our snowshoes crunching beneath us. The higher temperature, the rain, all contributed to soft snow. It made it more difficult to walk.

We arrived back at the car and we made a donation to the people that maintain the Meissner Trail. They do such an amazing job at it! It was the highlight of the weekend’s adventures.

STATS:

Time: 1:48

Calories Burned: 553

Distance: 3 miles

It was a good workout and we had worked up an appetite. After changing back at the hotel, we went to downtown Bend to attempt having lunch at Deschutes. It was still crowded but we decided to wait at the bar with beers.

The beer I enjoyed while we waited for a table was the Horse Ridge IPA.

Horse Ridge IPA, Pub Exclusive: This strong pale is brewed in traditional Northwest-style, you’ll be happy to know!  The hops are floral and pronounced (Horizon, Cascade, Crystal) while the malt bill is made up of two types of crystal malt and two types of wheat.
IBU’s 75| Alcohol by Vol. 6.1%

It was really good and REALLY strong. I didn’t realize just how strong until I was done with the beer. Ooops….I ordered the fish and chips for lunch/dinner. I got the sweet potato fries to go with it and oh my GOD they were good. They were the absolute best sweet potato fries I’ve ever eaten. I don’t think I need to say that I over-indulged on Sunday…

Yep I’m a tad tipsy in that photo. Oh well. 😉

Just looking at the picture of my food makes my mouth water and I want to eat it again! I was stuffed after two of the fish and half of my fries. I took the rest with me but it didn’t really hold up. 🙁 Too soggy to eat as a leftover. Oh well.

Michael had the garlic burger with sweet potato fries. He said it was really good. It looked delicious.

We both got one more beer, a Mirror Pond Pale Ale. I couldn’t finish my second beer though. My first had been too strong and I was too tipsy to finish it.

I left half of the beer there and we walked around downtown for a bit before heading back to the hotel for a low-key evening. We watched most of Season 4 of Entourage and relaxed. It was a great end to the perfect day!

QUESTION: What is your favorite beer?