|In Search of Eastern Skiing|
|Sunday, January 22. Loon Mountain, NH|
Saturday night's forecast called for additional snow, but Sunday morning broke with only a dusting upon the car. Our choices were limited: 40 miles or more for low altitude Attitash -- where we had seen rain at the base lodge the day before; 50 or so miles south to Waterville Valley, or about 20 miles to Loon.
Not a lot of choices. Cannon was closed. Waterville seemed too far away in the wrong direction. Attitash sounded promising, but did nothing to stir my soul. Wildcat had reopened, and they claimed it was dumping. But they also claimed it was going to continue dumping all day, so we decided to stick to the plan and save it for Monday.
Loon was close by and cheap. $23 lift tickets, since they had limited skiing. It was a Loony day.
And limited was the word. We'll call it a training day. At least it wasn't raining. Or maybe it was, and I just didn't care anymore. And it was challenging, since the snow was wet and heavy and not too forgiving. So what if it was only 400 foot of vertical and ballroom flat slopes: the Doctor and I wore smiles on our faces. We were skiing, we weren't spending a lot of money, and they had a train.
The train was indeed the coolest thing about the mountain, at least on this Sunday. Old narrow gauge logging train, runs forward from the Octagon base lodge to the Gov. Adams base lodge, and backwards from the Gov. Adams base lodge to the Octagon base lodge. Eats maple wood and belches steam.
Every time I heard its lonesome whistle blow, I started to giggle. Thought I was at Disneyland.
Ended the day with a couple of brews in the Babe Pub while watching Kyle Rasmussen win a world cup downhill on the tube. Next best thing to really skiing is watching it on TV.
Home again to our tiny motel room in Franconia Notch and a fine but lonely salmon dinner at a local restaurant. As far as we could tell, we were the only tourists in the notch. As we munched on our fish, we actually saw snowflakes out the window. Maybe there was hope for tomorrow...