Field Report No. 20160315BA
Topic: The three-in-one season
Conditions: Rock-radiated heat
COMMENTS: Bolstered by chatter of songbirds, accompanied by the clicking of a raven, I pulled on my helmet, rock shoes, and harness for the first time outdoors this year. Snow's breath braided with heatwaves off the crag; I peeled off layer after layer until I bellied-up to the rock in tights and a tank top, my grateful arms stretched like a horizon line beneath the sun's white light. As I stood there, bathed in spring's first clean warmth, I reflected on the past few days' outdoors time. Two days prior I'd snowmobiled in the pouring rain (and two layers of soaked hardshells) to ski at the pass. Yesterday I took my week's long run in a blizzard with my hood up. Spring in the Methow is a manic time. With all the options it can be challenging to choose the appropriate activity for the day's conditions but today I chose correctly.
KEY FEATURES: Snow audibly melting. Dry rock acting as a proximal space heater. Birds and deer reawakening, flushing from their winter hovels to eat and photosynthesize. Depth-of-field granted by a hawk's high peal.
RECOMMENDATIONS: After checking ski, rock, or running route beta in the Winthrop Public Library's stash, snag a soy chai and a cup of soup at Rocking Horse Bakery and jet to the nearest south-facing crag, muddy trail, or north-facing ski route. Word to the wise: Methow Cycle and Sport carries the widest array of sport fuel in the valley.