Monday, 15FEB, & Tuesday, 16FEB, were spent dealing with sick grandkids; & Dan getting ready to go on a ski trip w/Joe on Wednesday.
Wednesday late afternoon Corrie took Dan & Joe to the New Orleans airport to catch Air Alaska to Seattle so they can go skiing. The last time they made this trip was JAN/FEB of 2012 (see below BLOG link). Their intention was to do it every year. But because of different factors (Dan’s injury, bad snow years, Joe’s job), this is only their second time. By the time they get to house in Sultan, WA, & open it up, it was 1AM.
Thursday, 18FEB, morning Joe & Dan rented ski equipment & purchase a few equipment items they don’t have (like a helmet for Dan). Then it was off to Dan’s cousin Steve & wife Bonnie’s in Kittitas, WA, for the next two days. Why? Because the closest ski area to Sultan (Stevens Pass) has lots of snow but is now experiencing rain. So after Dan checked the ski area reports & the highway patrol reports, he believes that the White Pass Ski Area & the Mission Ridge Ski Area will not have rain for the next two days. Since Bonnie & Steve’s house is outside of Kittitas, it is centrally located between White Pass & Mission Ridge; what better time to visit relatives (ie freeload)? See below BLOG link for our last visit with them.
Early Friday morning Dan & Joe made the drive to White Pass for their first day of skiing. Even though Dan skied for many years in western WA, this was his first time at White Pass. No rain but it snowed the entire time, & every now and then the wind would kick up making the chair ride pretty brutal. All-in-all a great first day skiing. Then back to Steve & Bonnie’s for home cooked meal.
Saturday morning if was off to Mission Ridge Ski Area outside of Wenatchee, WA; a ski area they skied during their trip four years ago. Luckily they got one of last parking spots! The place was so crowded, that it took 45 minutes to get on the first chair. But after that the crowded lift lines disappeared. Fantastic day - beautiful sun, beautiful snow. As they did last ski trip, they tried to hook-up with niece Tessa Morris; but she was working ski patrol & couldn’t get free. Late in afternoon Joe hooked up with nephew Dash Morris for couple of high speed runs on the back country slopes (ie out of bounds, w/no ski patrol). Then it was an exhausted drive back to Sultan.
Sunday, 21FEB, they took a break from skiing (good timing – cold, cloudy & windy). The day started with breakfast at the Sultan Bakery. Joe then took off to hike at Wallace Falls State Park outside of Gold Bar, WA, where Dan & Rebecca hiked back in 2009 (& Dan across a bear).
Dan used his day of rest to straighten out numerous small evergreen trees that appear to have been blown over by some high winds on the property? That evening they met Dan’s brother Shawn & wife Cindie (last visited with 11OCT15) for dinner in Lynnwood.
Monday morning it was off to Stevens Pass Ski Area to ski with cousin Sheila Harris & beau Alan. Since Alan had a morning dental appointment, Sheila hitched a ride with neighbor Hans. Skiing started out great w/Sheila & Hans taking Joe on black diamond runs thru the trees; while Dan stuck to the blue runs. Around 11AM heavy snow started falling & they end up skiing in white-out conditions – not fun. Eventually Alan shows up & conditions improve. The rest of the day was spent w/Dan sticking to blue runs, while everyone else challenges death on the double black diamonds.
Tuesday & Wednesday were more days of rest. Dan stakes & ties more evergreens blown over by the wind this winter. Dan also spent time doing battle w/invasive blackberries on the property. Wednesday Joe went day & night skiing solo at Stevens Pass.
Thursday, 25FEB, last day for skiing for both. A beautiful & great day at Stevens PassJ!
Early Friday AM they secured the house & make the drive to SeaTac airport. For some reason Dan gets a red X on boarding pass & gets to keep shoes on & skip scanning (maybe it was his military ID?). Flight is overbooked & even though we checked in 24 hrs ago Joe does not have an assigned seat. Everything works out, & we make it back to Houma, LA; back together w/Corrie & in the RV at Rebecca & Raymonds’s.