Friday, 28 March 2014

Robinhood, Man in Tights

The Purcell Mountain Range
Barry's new tights
I have neglected to post any of our adventures for a while.   I haven't been in the best mood while recovering from my fractured ankle.  My distraction to my duck footed cast was, of course knitting.
just a sample 
 A reality check indeed.  How such a minor injury can debilitate your quality of life.  I couldn't drive, go for a walk outside with all the ice, or even socialize as I am a bit isolated here in Windermere.

I guess you are wondering why this post is titled: "Robinhood, Man in Tights"  Well, let me explain:
James of Sherwood
Our good friend (and Mountain Friend) Barry of Sherwood, England loves archery. Folklore tells us Sherwood forest is near Manchester where Barry resides near by.  It also happens to be his birthday.
A very Happy Birthday

So, what would Sir Barry of  Sherwood like for his Birthday?  A new pair of tights, of course.  As it turned out, he did wear them with pride for the party.

 My last appointment with the Doctor and final x ray was on 10 March.  Sleepless in Windermere, as I lay awake the night before hoping he would clear me for skiing at 5 weeks post fracture.  After a long night hoping in silence, the morning finally approached.  0800....x ray....wait....Then.....YES, I can ski.  But not without warning. There is still a great risk for re fracture IF I fall the same way.  First of all, the story behind the injury begins with purchasing my new boots.  The boots are fabulous and give great ankle support (one reason why I purchased this specific boot) BUT. The ski tech reset my bindings and DIN.  Personally, I do not like anyone fiddling with my equipment.  Lusti's  Pro shop is the ONLY shop I trust with my life to handle my ski equipment other than Bob.  Being a bit suspicious about my settings. I asked Lusti to have a quick look.  Yes, my DIN was set way too high.  The ski did not release when it snagged a snow snake.  Lesson
learned.  Either way, I am now skiing every day as my confidence builds.   Each day is more adventurous than the last.  Skiing with Bob again is the highlight of my day.  It is good to be back.
The secret 
Bob and Cat are back
Our new favourite run in the POW is Sidewinder through to Hobbit's Hollow and out to View of 1,000 Peaks, Downhill and finally Powder Trail.  A 10+ kilometre run from top to bottom.  Double Diamond in the trees and bumps to Black Diamond, then Blue to a final easy peasy Green run, just in time for a cold pint of B.C.s finest ale.  It's feels so good to be back on my pretty sticks.And then there is Tombstone.  A hidden treasure.  An outdoor saloon on the mountain.  A few of us lucky ones know where this is.  Thanks to a good friend who swore us to secrecy.

Mike, Lev and Bob at Tombstone
We left for Nelson on 10 March to celebrate Deb's Birthday.
Happy Birthday Deb!
 Eight of us piled into two vehicles to make the hippie trek around, up and over the neighbouring mountain range into the Hippiest, Funky town of Nelson, where you will find the remaining Draft Dodgers and bearded, braided hippies refusing to give up the unforgettable era of the 1960's.
Strange looking hat.  It may be alive!
Street musicians, coffee shops frequent every corner along with boutiques, shoppes, eateries and pubs.  Whitewater ski hill is a short drive up the mountain.  Time to ski!!!! My first day after the Doctor let me loose!

Giddy and Goosebumps...excitement and worry, I gear up, shackle my repaired ankle in my boot and hobble out to the loading area just outside the day lodge.  Can I ski?  Will it hurt?  The answer: Yes and Yes.  I can ski, but my goodness!  It hurt.  I still have a fair bit of tissue damage in need of repair, so a couple Tylenol & Advil did the trick.
Whitewater Ski Resort,  Breathtaking
Whitewater had rain over the weekend that transformed the mountain known for its powder into a cement clad carpet of white.  Our tour guide Joanne gave us a 5 star tour on groomed runs and cat tracks.  The only ski able terrain available to us this day.  (a good thing for me, as groomed was all I could master)  It felt SO good, even on the hard packed corduroy.  The vibration from the skis cutting into the corduroy actually felt like a massage turned up to Turbo setting! Shake, Rattle and Roll.  Bob and I skied until noon.
The gang
Lunch time at the Fresh Tracks Cafe, known for the best gourmet cuisine of any ski resort across North America.
The story behind Fresh Tracks Cafe and Whitewater begins in Vancouver B.C. where Shelley Adams gained her training and love for food while cooking for the movie business in Vancouver.  After moving to the Kootenays in 1985 she became the owner of the Whitewater Ski Resort where she is the creative director and chef for the cafe.
Her successful book,Whitewater Cooks is also part of the beautiful creations found in the cafe.  Amazing!  A definate on our bucket list for next year.  We will have an eagle's eye watch on the snow report next season.  A powder dump and we are off to Whitewater to play in the good stuff!!!!

Koontaney Lake
The next day, it was a unanimous decision to hang around the town as the snow conditions were far from ideal.  Sue, Barry, Bob and I decided to walk along Kootaney Lake was beautiful.
Looks like fun.  Childen playing!
We stumbled upon an outdoor gym.  What an ingenious idea.  With all the wonderful food over the past few days, we all needed a workout.  Yes, Children playing as we climbed and clammered on the chilly equipment.  We need to keep the maturity level at a minimum.  What a blast!
In the west, we kiss the bear for luck

To complete this post.  I saved the best for last.  To leave this post on a good note.  Literally.....

Inga creating beautiful music in her studio

Lev; also a good friend and wonderful skier joined us many times on the slopes imigrated from St. Petersburg, Russia with his beautiful wife, Inga in 1979 (with a pair of skis, of course) Being a Geological physicist, Calgary was the perfect piece of heaven to relocate for his work as well as leisure.  We are all winter people, migrating to snow as birds would fly to the south. We are true Snow Birds.  Inga, a most incredible pianist, played for the Russian Philharmonic Orchestra, not teaches piano for a group of gifted children.
A magical evening
 One day, at the beginning of our ski season at Panorama, we were riding up in the chair to ski one of our favorite runs, with Lev, our conversation was about his homeland and Inga.  " Lev, I would love to hear Inga play the piano.  It would be an honour for me to listen to such to my ears, so to speak."  Lev replied, "I can arrange that."  And that was that.  Dinner in Dutch Creek, and a private concert for Bob and myself.  Honoured isn''t quite the word.  Speechless as Inga began playing her grand piano in her studio overlooking Dutch Creek and the Hoodoos.  I have never listened to such beauty.  It was breathless as the notes danced in the room.  We were also treated to a most wonderful Russian dinner, complete with an education on Vodka.

I'm almost done....
Barry, Sue, myself & Bob
To bring all our followers up to date, Bob (Bob's patient transfer service) Barry, Sue and myself.  All four of us being the recovering "Walking wounded"  decided to take the day off relaxing.  It was a no brainer to spend the afternoon at White Swan Provincial park at the hot springs.
Great friendships

 This is a yearly event for Bob and myself.  We packed a lunch, a few cold  B.C. beers and headed up the mountain to the springs.  I could not fulfull my anual dip in the river as the rocks are too unstable for my unstable ankle.  Barry took my place as he made the chilling plunge. The healing sulfer waters excaping the hard rock of the mountains are healing, but smelly.  A shower was in need when we returned home.  Bedtime came early for us last night.
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Goodnight as tomorrow we will be skiing in the sunshine and spring snow conditions.  Yipee!!!!!!!!!!!!

Homeward Bound

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