|my lodging at Big Sky. It smelled constantly of weed and dirty feet|
For 5 magical days, I found myself adventuring in the magical, white, wintery world of Western Montana. While it included crashing on the top bunk in my brothers less than glamorous employee housing at Big Sky Resort that smelled constantly of weed and dirty boy feet, it was one of the more perfect vacations I have had.
|Yellowstone National Park|
One day found us trekking through Yellowstone National Park. Nature is ridiculous and I spent the day with my brother in awe as we wound through the park with our hippie tour guide looking at the majestic, wonder of this place. I couldn’t help but imagine early explorers discovering this place and what they must have thought of this strikingly beautiful landscape with openings to the center of the earth.
|snowshoe trail through Yellowstone|
My brother and I were the only ones on our tour that opted for the snowshoe portion through the frigid sub zero temperatures. Our tour guide pulled the van over, gave us our snowshoes and said, “There’s the trailhead there. Just follow it for 3 miles and we’ll see you at the other end.” We inquired if it was well marked or if we might find ourselves lost somewhere being mauled by a grizzly (because he had just told us several stories of bear mauling). “Worst case just follow the river and you’ll be fine. And if you see an animal, don’t worry about going off trail.” Comforting.
Equally as comforting, on our Christmas Day snowshoeing adventure, we followed fairly fresh coyote tracks up the mountainside. Halfway up, while stopping for water, light snack and a view of our surroundings, my brother began reciting A Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost. Where he ended, I picked right up with a recitation of Stoping by a Woods On a Snowy Evening. Frost sounds even better recited on a road less traveled on a snowy mountainside.
|Magical view of Bigsky|
It is hard to be back home and not breathing the crisp, cool mountain air. It was a trip that made me homesick for everything I love about winter. Despite the ache in my cold fingers and toes, it is always a euphoric feeling to point my skies down the side of a mountain. I love getting lost in the quiet of a wilderness blanketed in snow. I love being with my brother.