Hard to Believe

Christmas was only three weeks ago?!  It feels more like that many months! Maybe its seems like that to me because we took a few days after Family Celebrations on the 25th and 26th for real holiday.

We visited Jay Peak, in Vermont about 2 hours south of Montreal. This was our third visit to Jay as a family and as ever we got our money's worth out of the hill, all of us skiing first lift to last each day. It feels almost medicinal, after the annual December insanity, to head out of town to the woods where we can spend all day outside and then eat dinner in front of the TV before collapsing into bed.  

Our second day was a full battle with the elements. Bitter cold, with the kind of wind that sways a four man chair lift and can slow you down on a flat section of the hill. There was also persistent ice fog limiting visibility, subtly coating our goggles until you suddenly realized you couldn't really see anything clearly. At the top of the mountain you had to ski by kind of feeling your way down..

We were out for the whole day with only a one hour break in our condo for a hot lunch and a spin in the dryer for mitts, cowls and socks. As we trudged through the trees towards our unit in the failing light as the lifts stopped running I was drained, chilled and absolutely relaxed. (Even though a 40 minute walk up the now empty runs nearby with the dog still lay ahead). There had been no opportunity to think of anything all day other than staying warm and getting either up or down the hill. We had done it all together without a single text message having been sent or received or a cell phone call having been made either! 

After weeks of thinking of gifts and decorating and deadlines and exams and seasonal social commitments it is just perfectly brain draining for everyone to spend that kind of intense time on the hill.
The following morning we enjoyed "bluebird" skies and the kind of magical scene I have come to associate with Jay Peak...

...all that wind and ice and snow leave such amazing features behind to greet you at the top of a gondola ride.

This is the spindles of a railing coated in horizontally blown snow and ice to point where the space between is completely filled in..

Hudson of course didn't get to ski but he amused from the moment we pulled out of the driveway on departure until we raced in New Year's Eve with a couple of hours to spare before our New Year's dinner guests arrived. He was still proving an engaging travel companion in the first wee hours of 2011 as he joined us driving about the city collecting the kids from their various New Year's activities.

I hope you had a great time whatever your holidays entailed!


Aline said...

That is sooo beautiful! Good for you. I love cross country skiing since speed scares the crap out of me in any case. But it sounds wonderful to down hill it too. Happy New Year!

Tina said...

That sounds like a great break you had. And the pictures proof it! Thanks for sharing

Stephanie said...

Eek, skiing! I have such a fear of that. But you all were out all day - amazing. And you didn't freeze! Also amazing! Sounds like a great way to destress!

elizabeth said...

It looks so beautiful! And so COLD!!!

Lorraine said...

Looks like a fab vacation-

Brenda said...

Sounds like a great holiday and I'm jealous of your stamina.

Acorn to Oak said...

Sounds like fun and verrry cold! Gorgeous photos! :-)