January: Midway’s magical month of snow

I haven’t had a winter like this since I was a wee lassie growing in Canada. The Heber Valley has had an endless barrage of glorious, fluffy snow and I don’t want it to end. Sadly, we’re kicking off February with 40-degree temps but I’m hoping “Ambruary” won’t let me down.

Since moving here late-September, we’ve tried to limit our schedule to church and the occasional activity. Bode played soccer in the fall and has continued with Webelos. Hadley has weekly Young Women activities and Science Club (she’s thrilled to be doing a snowshoeing field trip today to learn about how animals adapt in the wintertime). It’s a bonus to have world-class mountains right in your backyard.

But now we’re full speed ahead. The kids are doing a six-week downhill ski rec program on Saturdays that will end mid-February. Bode and I Nordic ski twice a week at Soldier Hollow while Hadley has volleyball at the same time. Bode (and maybe Hadley) started piano last week and as much as I try to limit extracurricular activities so we can maximum family time, being busy is working well for us in the winter.  I hate the thought of them hunkering down down with their technology during these dark and cold winter nights.

Here are a few January highlights:


I’ve never done so much snowshoeing in my life! Our texting group is 35 women and growing and I’ve loved getting to know these fabulous women.

Wasatch Mountain State Park

Dutch Hollow

Ice Castles

Just when I thought our resort town couldn’t get any cooler (literally), we spent one evening exploring the Midway Ice Castles’ crystal grottoes with shifting translucent white and petrol blue lights in scalloped ice. 

It would have been a scene out of a Russian fairy tale had I not biffed it GETTING ON (not off) the 50-foot ice block slide. My bruised ego and butt are more of the Brothers Grimm genre.


I ventured out to Park City with some ladies a few weeks ago and we’re doing round 2 tomorrow. I enjoy being by myself for most activities but downhill skiing is not one of them. I love hanging out on the lift with these fellow Snowmamas!

I’ve enjoyed spending every Tuesday and Thursday Nordic skiing with Bode at Soldier Hollow Olympic Center and had an epiphany last week: As much as I love downhill, I actually prefer X-country skiing. I find it much easier to connect with nature and the workout is intense. We tried skate skiing for the first time last week and if my knees weren’t shot, I’d probably trade in my classic skis for skate–that gets your heart pumping like nothing else! 

This week, Soldier Hollow is hosting the USANA FIS Nordic Junior & U23 World Ski Championships 2017. It has been so fun to see 750 athletes from 40 nations in our little community.

Of course, nothing will ever compare to the time I was on a flight with the Austrian Men’s Ski Team. Hubba. Hubba.


We’ve been trying to ski Alta for more than a year and last week was finally our time! Until it wasn’t. We drove up Sunday after church, settling in for the night at Goldminer’s Daughter Lodge. And then an intense storm blew through, Little Cottonwood Canyon was closed due to avalanche danger and “Maximum Interlodge” was declared. Interlodge means you’re on lockdown indoors but “Maximum Interlodge” also involves staying away from windows and doors. 

Many details to follow on this crazy 24 hours but suffice it to say, we did not ski.


We had a grand ol’ time sledding Lime Canyon on Martin Luther King Junior Day.

So much so that when my friend Sarah announced she was throwing a sledding birthday party for her son, Charlie, I volunteered. She had posted some cool pictures of her husband Ben’s secret haunt toward Cascade Springs and I wanted IN.

The powder was thigh-deep in places and we hiked about a half-mile to the start of the hill (not to mention hauling sleds up and down).

It wasn’t as idyllic as it looked, believe me. Case in point: Bode’s awesome wipeout.

And then the real misery began as we were hiking out. As Sarah and I cut trail through the deep snow for a half a mile, her husband and I pulling the injured birthday boy and cold friend on their sleds while she sacrificed her gloves and carried two sleds and helmets in 17 degrees, she commented,

“I mean, really. This is next level crazy.”

And then she glanced over at me, Miss Maximum Interlodge, and said nothing.

I think they’re onto me.

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