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Sunday, December 27, 2015

Red Mountain's Majesty… Snowshoeing Commodore Gulch Backcountry To Barstow Mine

Christmas is behind us! The storms have passed! There is new powder to track on "Red!" Life is truly good GREAT! 

Low barometric pressure has been displaced by high pressure. Every time that happens during wintertime, temperatures plummet to around zero. But there is nary a cloud, so we will rely on solar heating to keep us warm up on Red Mountain today. 

Today's photos are from a snowshoe trip up Commodore Gulch to Barstow Mine… some 12,000 feet of elevation. Of course this was before storm tracks dove south and dropped several feet of additional snow. Consequently, avalanche danger will be extreme today and we will need to avoid exposures (fun places) that could snuff out our little shining lights :(.

Though we took the "Gang" up to Barlow Mine and beyond to Spirit Basin this summer, I doubt they will recognize much beyond the skyline. We left a vehicle lower down "Red" and made a long trek up, up, up above timberline, through a profusion of wildflowers where we took turns posing for portraits, then down, down, down the "toe-jam" switchbacks to our pick up car. Here's a few reminder photos as examples of the grand and oppositional differences between winter and summer in the mountains… 

The above and below photo was taken from about the same place...

Winter above… Summer below. Note the Mountain Skyline remains the same.

John and Joallen, now grandparents. We'll probably never see THEM again :)

Childless Hiker Mommas, Suzanne and Gayle  

Commodore Basin

Red Mountains 1, 2, and 3… now white with snow

A BCB post without philosophical reflection is like a winter without snow. So here's something to chew on… 

Some of the "Gang" can do just fine without snow in their winters. Hell, those Floridians have to crank up Mr. Buddy and put on coats just to look at these photos. Here's where you probably think I'm going to say something about how a little "Variety" in Life is the salt in one's beans. But no; you are wrong. Even though I don't get some of the choices and preferences of friends, and even relatives, I have learned to respect them. I'm just happy to be included in their lives… loved even. Well, maybe not by Jim; I think he tolerates me because I come with "Bobbie." :)  

Some like cats, some prefer dogs, some need kids, and a few need all three. We all just "want somebody to love," and love us in return. Remember… 
And in the end, the love you take
Is equal to the love you make

I would add to that that the love you get is equal to the love you give. 
Peace out!
Happy New Year!!!
Mark and Bobbie… counting down the days till we bail Goldie from the "pound" and head south to Aridzona. Watch, it will snow down there… 

Now, out our backdoor… Hiking (wading, actually) Oak Creek Trail under the "Watchtower," Twin Peaks

Deep snow, me Happy… 


  1. Personally I would love to encounter a little of that white stuff...thanks for taking me on a hike vicariously!

    Here's a little tidbit to mull on this morning...replace childless with childfree.

    Happy hiking!

  2. Yes, Child Free is much better. Thanks Lisa.
    We're only a 12 hour drive from San Diego, you know :) I'm sure your mountains have plenty of snow this year tho.

  3. Stunning photos. What else is new? Love those summer/winter comparisons.

    Although it's not your cup of tea, in mid-January we'll be part of the Outside Our Bubble "get together" on BLM land at Quartzite. 45 rigs "circling the wagons". It'll be our first "Big Show" there. A zoo no doubt.

  4. Beautiful ... reminds me living in Breckenridge

  5. Beautiful ... reminds me of the time I lived in the Breckenridge area, early 90's

  6. Totally with you on the karma of love. Used to be a kids show on TV when I was a young one that started out with the words "love is like a boomerang, what you throw out you get back". It was corny at the time (and still is), but also works. Love the snow pics.

  7. Not to get all maudlin or anything but you are alright by me. Actually, those hikes look beautiful and for some reason I would like to try one. However, common sense has gotten the better of me. Leave you with this thought though.

    “I'd far rather be happy than right any day.”
    ― Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

  8. Love to see your snowy photos and the comparisons. But I'd happily leave snow behind for an endless summer, with a bit of spring and fall thrown in. Hope to meet you southern AZ this winter.

  9. Beautiful photos as always. I had to turn up the space heater in order to look at them all. I just love seeing you wearing shorts in the deep snow. WTH?

  10. Thanks for the snow pictures. Please don't bring it with you - it's cold enough here as it is. ;-)

  11. Beautiful snow pictures! Are headed back home after last Christmas celebration. Instead of dodging snowdrifts as we should be, it's flooded out roads we're dealing with. Happy New Year!

  12. What a difference the scenic photo's show between July and December. Your photo's remind me of a Winter trip I took several years ago and hiked in the Whistlers B.C. backcountry. It was so quiet, bright and pure. Tracking thru the snow at altitude I'm sure you get a little heated and the shorts probably feel comfortable. Happy New Year and stay away from those Avalanche areas!

  13. I love hiking...also in the mountains, but not by ski or snowshoes; I need a snow-bare ground to like it. 25 years in Norway was enough of walking through deep deep snow. I live at the coast in hopes of never seeing those amounts of snow ever again. But I've gotta admit that your snow-white pictures with a blue sky are beautiful. For many years my parents dragged us boys down to Switzerland walking glaciers and sun-warmed (wet) snow fields in the SUMMER. Yuk...And just below the Alps were the sunny shores of Lago Maggiore where we could have been sitting licking an ice cream cone.

  14. Well I loved the header picture and thought that's what I'd say and then I loved the winter/summer pictures. But I also just love every single snow picture. Winter needs snow. I lived most of my life where it was cold by my standards which is 20's or teens at night but we seldom had snow. Winter needs snow. But now I think I have to say I love that last picture of you the bestest. Love IS all you need no matter what else you think is "really" important.


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