Saturday, June 12, 2010

We Will Have to Bring the Spring

On June 5th 2010, seven intrepid Loll staffers headed for Camp. It was a cool cloudy morning. In spite of years of promises to the contrary, Al Gore has not delivered global warming and it has been a cool wet spring. Still we were hopeful. We drove a long way in on the gravel road before we say our first snow. We passed the place we were blocked back in 2008 and cruised over the road repairs we had put in that spring to enable us to get into camp. However, about one mile from the top of Calf Creek summit the road was a solid drift of snow.

This is as far as we got. There had been at least one truck which had

gone further, and there were a couple of ATV’s milling around a few

hundred yards up the road.

The mile long snow drift to the top did not look promising.

This is as far as that other truck had got. Finding a place to turn around

must always be on your mind when your driving up a narrow mountain road.

No where to turn around up here.

We headed in on foot.

At the snow poll. Note the drift is just above 2 feet deep.

The road had been covered with snow from where we

parked to the top, and of course down the other side.

There was no need to go further. We headed home. As we passed

Gibson Meadow, life was just starting to stir.


Five days later, on June 10th Jody and I gave it another try.

The sun was actually shining as we started in from Ashton.


Almost to the Forest boundary a calf and cow moose ran across the

road in front of us. I had to put on the breaks to miss the little red calf.

We headed slowly up the highway. Jody pointed out that the moose

were running parallel to us in the trees. I stopped the truck to get out

my camera. The calf made it across the road before I was ready for

the shot. He was so cute; hard to believe that a moose could ever be cute.

The cow seemed to be chasing her unruly child through the woods.

I imagine that the second dart into the road got the little guy a tong lashing.


Life was going green in Gibson Meadow. Check out the Sandhill Crane

in the middle of the photo.

We got almost half a mile further up the road. A lot of snow had melted

in five days. Where the road up had been one solid drift on Saturday,

it was showing a lot of dirt on Thursday.

There were still plenty of big drifts, but the road was peeking through every

few yards. We could dig through this we said.

The ground was bear as we approached the snow poll.

The snow had dropped a foot.

But, looking east, down the Calf Creek slope, there was still an awful

lot of snow. We decided that we would have to let the sun do the digging.

At the Forest Service office we had been told that the Park Service had

plowed the road from Flag to Grassy Lake. We decided to give it a look.

We drove all the way round through Jackson Hole. This is the view

up the hill leading into be east end of Grassy Lake. We’re probably

six miles from camp and the road was very wet.


We’ve decided to go for it in another week. We are planning to take the entire staff in on Thursday, June 17th. This time we will have plenty of diggers and plenty of work for all. It is not in our nature to give up. Difficulties are chances to prove our strength, or build it. I am confident of a great summer yet to come. Like the children in Oscar Wilde’s story of the Selfish Giant. We will sneak in through a hole in the wall, and with us will come the Spring.

1 comment:

Jason said...

Good luck next week! Many of my fondest staff memories are from the adventures associated with breaking through the snowdrifts trying to make it to camp. There is something about the combination of shovels, snow, mud, machinery and the company of 50 friends that is very appealing to a young man. I am sure that you will make it and make some new memories in the process.