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Yes, I suppose a TR is in order, although I was happy to see that my accidental account left out place names and GPS waypoints (as if).  Briefly:

It was a north of the Doogie line, last-minute decision to avoid crowded lift corrals and the cold chairlifts they served.  Sharper minds would have thought of this possibility in advance and brought a map to go with our slackcountry packs.  The lack of a map was consistent with my generally ill-fated trip.  I'm not sure if it was Ullr's revenge for my faithfulness to the false idols of the workplace over the past year or simply desk-induced gaperdom (or whether there is any difference between those two), but my tally of unfortunate events/self-induced suffering included:
	* a mysteriously severed windshield-washer line, which was reparable with duct tape, but coupled with 
	* a frozen hood latch that did not secure properly following washer line repair, resulting in the hood flying up as I pulled back out on the highway, causing
	* a smashed windshield.  A quick call to the Dartmouth Listers (thanks Ben & Noah) who I was joining for a day, found me a ride to some nasty traffic on ill-treated roads, which led us to quickly choose to enter the backcountry;
	* withhout a map but with a general notion of where we were going and said local's direction to hit the trees on our left;
	* (no, your other left) to guide our
	* aesthetically pleasing skin to the top of the brutally windy ridge, whereupon I discovered that I had two pairs of goggles
	* in the car, prior to our first 500-foot descent;
	* down a sucker line into low-angled manageable thwack above a steeper, heavily overgrown gully, which prompted us to 
	* quickly reascend our now-thankfully low-angled tracks at a Dynafit-equipped 20-year old's pace (for some of us), before
	* dropping back into the teeth of the wind only to have my eyes freeze shut, 
	* trying to figure out which corners could be cut while neglecting the beautiful fall line that my instincts and the forgotten map told me was there.
Thankfully, there were a couple dozen redeeming turns in boot deep, when we found said-local's skin track on the way out.  It was well worth another lap or two, but the cold had worked its damage on my poorly tuned engine, and we settled for 400 feet of moderately steep untracked.  It felt like a consolation prize at the time, but after a couple hot meals and a good night's sleep and knowledge that I'll return with a healthy dose of gaperdom out of the way, it sure looks like a good day now.    
 
- Patrick


 

________________________________
From: roger Klinger <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Wed, December 30, 2009 3:10:36 PM
Subject: Re: [SKIVT-L] From the Top of Mt. Mansfield...

Si where'd ya go and why wasn't I invited?
;-)


On Wed, Dec 30, 2009 at 2:16 PM, Patrick Haskell <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

Just looked at my Catamount Trail guide.  Looks like we could have taken a skiers left fall line from the top and been well rewarded with little chance for error other than the ubiquitous thwack trap or soggy gully.  Of course, keeping track of not crossing the trail with all the blow-in might have proven challenging.  Also of interest is how close we were to the Long Trail at the top.  Can't imagine wanting to follow it yesterday, of course, but it could be worth scoping out for steeper options.  
>
>Warmer and rested and knowing how that drainage catches the snow off the ridge, I'm psyched to put our chilly exploration to more productive use.  There were a lot of turns left on the hill.  Glad you had the good sense to get us to do that last climb.  Thanks for waiting for me. 
>
>- Patrick
>
>PS  Address:
>
>311 Front Street
>Winchendon, MA 01475
>
>
>
>
________________________________
From: Ben Peters <[log in to unmask]>
>To: [log in to unmask]
>Sent: Tue, December 29, 2009 8:05:02 PM
>Subject: Re: [SKIVT-L] From the Top of Mt. Mansfield...
>
>Yay! Now we can finally ski the trees! 
>
>
>The other day I almost skied the trees, then realized it was dangerous so I just ripped groomers all day long.
>
>
>On Tue, Dec 29, 2009 at 8:02 PM, roger Klinger <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>
>>
>>
>>On Tue, Dec 29, 2009 at 8:00 PM, Wesley Alan Wright <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>
>>657 PM EST TUE DEC 29 2009
>>>STATION            PRECIP   TEMPERATURE   PRESENT         SNOW
>>>                  24 HRS   MAX MIN CUR   WEATHER     NEW TOTAL SWE
>>>MOUNT MANSFIELD     0.61    14 -14 -13                7.0  40                                                                                               ^^^
>>
>>Let the games begin!
>>
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