Although Ashley and I both went back to Oregon for Christmas, we'll be posting separate blog entries as we didn't see each other much.
After successfully completing my WFR course, I was scheduled to leave the next day on a flight for Oregon. It appeared that little 8 pound 9 ounce baby Jesus was on my side as my flight into Portland wasn't even delayed. I walked past dozens of people who had been waiting at the airport for days to board my plane. The blame, of course, is awarded to the Portland Airport as they were partially closed for several days during the unprecedented storm that left 18 to 24 inches of snow in the Portland area.
I spent some brief but quality time with my family on the 23-25 before heading to Corvallis to be with Ashley's family on the 26th. Things sure are changing with the addition of little ones. I hadn't seen my niece, Caitlyn, for almost a year and half, and she's not even 3 years old! I also got to meet Ashley's niece, Anna, for the first time and Jason and Kelly's baby, Patrick, for the second time.
I spent the final two days of my trip with Jake, Keith, and Garrett on a hut trip to the Maiden Peak Shelter. The Oregon snow was everything I have been missing in Colorado - plentiful, deep, wet, and heavy. In two days of backcountry skiing, I never hit a single rock! The trees were big and gorgeous with snow piled high on each branch, with the younger hemlocks bent over and burried by their heavy snow burden. But you'll have to take my word for it because I forgot to bring my camera.