Aldape Summit Sledding

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January 20, 2013
Hazing
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Hazing
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If you’ve lived in Boise long, you know all about our winter inversions. This year is making up for the last. With another week of single digit temperatures (°F) and bad air in the forecast, and Jessica out-of-town for the extended weekend, the kids and I planned our getaway.

Warm and sunny somewhere above
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Warm and sunny somewhere above
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Rocky Canyon ahead
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Rocky Canyon ahead
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Kayla retrieved our sled from a friend’s truck, I replaced some of its missing screws and filled a thermos with cocoa. All systems nominal!

Staging area
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Staging area
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I told Brenna and Hunter about the time I drove Laura up here to sled. She had so much fun that she disregarded my calls to stop and kept going and going down the mountain. “Don’t do that,” I cautioned the current crop of kids.

Boise National Forest
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Boise National Forest
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There were other places along the way we might have stopped to sled but “just a bit farther” and we get a view.

Hoar frost on the snow
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Hoar frost on the snow
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Crystal lattice
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Crystal lattice
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A little work before the fun
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A little work before the fun
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She disliked walking in deep snow
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She disliked walking in deep snow
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Worth it now
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Worth it now
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Perfect landing
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Perfect landing
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Big brother swoops in to help.

Another run at it
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Another run at it
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I thought as they climbed — the last time I remember going up this path was some fifteen years ago on my XR with my buddy Brett on his. I shot video of him trying and trying again to make it to the top. Eventually he did. Time is funny.

Highest launch point yet
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Highest launch point yet
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Airborne over the road
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Airborne over the road
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As it should be.

Drat
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Drat
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The kids were chilled and interested in going higher. I was game to try. I got us pointed that way but Jeep wouldn’t go forward an inch. Tried some angles, slow, fast — nothing. Down it had to be. The upward effort put us below where we might have turned around so we would have to drive backwards, something any Idahoan worth their salt can do for miles, maybe days.

How about a hike instead?
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How about a hike instead?
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Backwards driving went well for a bit then we got into tracks I couldn’t get us out of. When the rear wheel went part way off the edge, I decided we’d reached our risk limit. Time to walk.

But hey, if you gotta walk …
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But hey, if you gotta walk …
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I have, somehow, had my share of walking away from stuck vehicles. This was pretty posh. Not the wee hours of the morning, no blizzard or mud, just sparkling snow and smog lit beautifully by the late afternoon sun.

New best friends
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New best friends
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Back to the main road and not far down from the summit we encountered this group out sledding and just hanging out. Nice. They weren’t there when we came by earlier.

My phone was dead for some reason so I asked if I might make a call. Young men and trucks, I sort of figured how this would go. A couple of them hopped in the taller Toyota and we headed up.

Adventure?
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Adventure?
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The Toyota couldn’t get close to where the Jeep was. The guys and I walked up to see if manpower might be enough. They were both winded and needed to sit down when we got there. So much for youth! With a wheel already heading over the edge, I decided it was too risky without straps and chains.

Back at their camp, I called Jessica and asked her to call Heather to see if they could drive up the come-alongs and chains from my garage (the perfect place to have them).

Jeep love
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Jeep love
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While we were waiting for Eric, another Jeep came by. They’d seen ours, had the gear to help and were glad to do so. Yea. With his winch pulleyed off a tree, it was quick work.

All's well that ends well
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All’s well that ends well
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An adventure now-and-then is good for the soul. We thanked everyone, especially the group that let Hunter and Brenna sit around their fire, and headed home.

Would have missed this if we’d left sooner
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Would have missed this if we’d left sooner
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“Rocky Canyon” for a reason
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“Rocky Canyon” for a reason
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Back under the blankets
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Back under the blankets
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