May 14, 2007

In a Quandary about Mother's Day

Every Mother's Day, there's a huge event on Mt. St. Helens where hundreds of people hike up and ski down the mountain wearing dresses, in honor of mothers everywhere. Keith and I had particiaped in this event in years past, and felt the urge to continue honoring mothers around the globe even though we weren't in the vicinity of Mt. St. Helens. We selected the most suitable ski ascent/descent 14,000 foot peak in Colorado and gave it a whirl after stopping at Savers the previous day.

The group consisted of Ashley, Melanie, Keith, Cota and me. Quandary Peak (or Mt. Quandary Peak as the sign on the highway points out) has a very mellow east ridge that makes for a straight forward ascent. Two bowls on the northeast face are ideal for a moderate level backcountry ski descent. The ascent went well, except for Melanie getting sick on the way up with something that kind of resembled altitude sickness. Whatever it was, it wasn't enough to prevent her from making the summit right before a thunderstorm began and we initiated a hasty retreat from the Zap Zone. The initial part of the descent was covered with a thin layer of spring slush (fun skiing from 14,100' to about 12,500'), while the lower reaches held deep slush that made for technical ski adventuring. We eventually made it back to the car, and Cota has been exhausted ever since. Here are some pictures and a video documenting the attire. Next year we'll have a skirt for Cota.


Molly said...

KICK ass! I love the video of Cota "skiing" with you. Looks like a very warm day up there. Jake is so stoked to come see all of you (i think Cota the most). I'm jealous he's going... Have fun!

Ian said...

Cheers to skiing in a dress! There were 400+ on the summit of St Helens this year. I think that is sizeably more than years past. We missed you guys!
And yea, cota looks like he is having a ton of fun.