Staying Upright During Winter Fun

     I’ve had a difficult time staying upright this week while participating in winter activities.  We went snowmobiling on Wednesday with a large group of people.  We usually spend 2-3 nights on a snowmobile adventure traveling from place to place with our friends.  This year’s challenge was trying to find a time when all four couples could get away at the same time.  Three of the families have hockey players, none of which are on the same team so needless to say, we couldn’t find a time we could all go.

    We settled on a day trip and decided we would include the kids this year.  Four families of four and two additional friends went out for a ride.  We went to the Trestle Inn for a great lunch and enjoyed the scenic beauty of the north shore with intermittent snow flurries throughout the day. 

     I have a history of being unable to keep my sled on the trail or upright or both on the trail and upright for an entire trip.  I thought I would be safe on a short day trip especially since I had Josh riding on the back of my sled.  I thought wrong.  I drove super cautiously, didn’t have any alcoholic beverages and still managed to tip the sled over onto both Josh and me. 

     The warm weather of last week melted a bunch of snow that turned to sheer ice.  Since a fresh skif of snow covered the ice I didn’t realize it was ice until we were sliding sideways.  I knew once we hit the snow again we’d roll but there wasn’t anything I could do about it, so over we went.  Thank goodness I wasn’t going fast and neither of us got hurt. 

     Then yesterday I decided I needed to ski the South Rim Trail above Gunflint Lake.  It’s not a tracked trail but they do groom it and there are fabulous views from up there.  There are also big stands of pines, rock outcroppings and lots of hills.  The narrow path makes it difficult to snowplow in order to slow down and in places brush sticks out and grabs at your ski poles or tries to tangle in your skis.  I was having more trouble going up hills at first but didn’t actually fall down for the first time until I was on completely flat ground without any obstructions in the trail.  I seemd to just tip over.

     I should tell you I hadn’t fallen while cross-country skiing in a very long time.  I don’t normally fall down so it kind of surprised me when I did.  Not too much farther down the trail I was trying to slow down enough to take a picture and wiped out again.  After that I must have fallen 2 or 3 more times and actually took my boots off to walk down a hill; that is unheard of.  I’ll blame it on my sore ankle and sore body from rolling over with the snowmobile, but I’m really not sure that was why I was struggling so much.

     I was exhausted after skiing the South Rim Trail and still had a long ways to go before I got back to  my car.  With the sun setting and freezing cold wind in my face I decided to cut the ski trip short at Gunflint Pines and got a ride back to my car.  I don’t know who that girl skiing was yesterday but it sure didn’t sound like me.

     It’s good to be challenged sometimes but I’m hoping the next time I go out to play in the snow I’ll be able to remain upright.