Dec 25, 2007

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and safe holidays from the Augaitis family!

I am currently in Ontario spending some time with the fam. Its been great seeing everyone again. My little nephew is a man at 6 months. This year Mike (Rasa's fiance) spent Christmas chez Grandma Augaitis. Its been good times but its hard to be surrounded by all this snow and not go "shred her up on the mountains..".

Live, Love, Laugh,...DREAM!

Dec 17, 2007

Whistler and Needle Peak Dec 15 and 16 2007

This weekend has been full of celebrations and skiing; two things that I enjoy doing. Friday night I was grateful to be invited to a Christmas celebration party and catch up with an old group of friends that I haven’t seen in ages. Unfortunately for that it proved to be a long evening and didn’t get home until late.

I awoke early Saturday morning and Matt, Luisa and I headed up to Whistler to check out what it was like to ride the lifts again. It proved to be a great day with lots of snow, good enough visibility and a fabulous après where I got to run into some old friends and roommates of mine. Love the après. Although, the hill was great fun it just doesn’t give me that spark like it used to. I will admit this….I think I have become a backcountry snob….I have experienced the luxury of deep fresh powder, the thrill of physically maneuvering myself up a mountain. The peacefulness of skiing with some of my closest friends and zero crowds…zero line ups and no freezing cold chairlift ride up the mountain….I truly love the backcountry and its difficult to compare it with the resort skiing…actually there is no comparison to be made…backcountry is just more my thing. Despite all that it was a great day and I don’t have any complaints….Shreddin the pow with some good people always puts a smile on my face.

We arrived back into the city fairly late and I managed to get myself to party number 2 with all my gear, no shower and no dinner. It was great to see everyone, meet some new outdoor enthusiasts and run into some old friends.

Sunday morning 6am Jay knocked on the door of Marg and Kala’s place (I crashed there as well) and off we were to Needle Peak. It proved to be such a fabulous day. It was a steep skin up right from the cars with tight trees and lots of snow. We finally got out of the bush and it we were surrounded by a beautiful backdrop. You could see mountains all around and way way way below was the highway. We got three fabulous runs in.

The lower half of the runs provided us with thigh deep champagne style powder. We were all feeling a little tired from skiing and partying but this trip was well worth the lack of sleep and early morning. My turns are feeling better each weekend and one day I’ll feel comfortable skiing the tight trees but for now the open space is just my thing. When I’m in tight spaces I tend to get nervous and out comes my beautiful snow plow….hehe.

I really enjoyed breaking trail for the last big up we had before the tricky descent back to the cars. It’s a different sort of adrenaline rush being in front breaking trail…, its just you, the deep snow, the mountains and all your muscles burning and hurting trying to reach the peak. I LOVE IT!

This weekend I’ll be in Ottawa visiting the family and looking forward and planning my next ski trips.

Live, love, laugh,…DREAM!

Dec 9, 2007

December6/7th 2007 Red Heather and Grouse

The Perfect Date with myself!!!

Saturday morning it was nice to sleep in past 6am and chill, have breakfast without rushing to go find some pow. In the afternoon I decided to hike up BCMC, I brought snowshoes and skates. I managed to reach the top as the sun was setting. Unfortunately my camera was experiencing some technical difficulties and I don’t have any pictures of the most stunning sunset I’ve seen in a long time. It was the perfect evening, after watching the sunset I put on my skates and skated around the ice rink on top of grouse…I really enjoy skating but is something I rarely end up doing. Despite growing up in Ottawa with the famous canal I have difficulties stopping at times and skating backwards. Hockey is something I’ve been meaning to try for a number of years now….maybe a couple more hikes to the top of Grouse are in need... Not only did I do some great outdoor activities I managed to squeeze a little home bound Christmas creativity before the end of the night. Catherine and I built our very own gingerbread houses!!! YUM!

Red Heather

Geoff, Andrew and I headed out to Red Heather in Squamish for a fun little day ski touring trip.

To be honest I did not have high hopes for sick pow today….I was pleasantly surprised with the conditions. The morning brought us some blue skies and beautiful views and in the afternoon we managed to find a couple of good turns with a layer of the fresh stuff….

We finished the day off in proper ski touring style at the Pub…..

All in all a different weekend from the last month but great nonetheless…I love BC!!!!


Dec 3, 2007

Marriott Basin Dec 1-2nd 2007

A big group of us headed out to the Marriott Basin this past weekend to check out the Wendy Thompson Hut and what kind of gnarly pow was awaiting us. Saturday proved to be a cold but a rather nice day.

The ski into the hut was fairly decent only a couple of steep uphills but all in all it went smoothly and rather quickly. Once we arrived to the hut it was very cold. There was another group there as well..something which we did not intend on. We made our selves some hot tea and headed out to the mountains to see what kind of sweet lines we could find.

We managed to sneak in a fantastic little ski before packing it in for the night. The light was low so it was difficult to decipher the depth and angles but thanks to Jer’s super advice I got some pretty sweet turns in. After 4 weekend of backcountry skiing I can already feel my confidence and skills rising and each time it gets me wanting more,… to ski faster, bigger and better….I LOVE IT!

Saturday night proved to be pretty busy in the little hut with over 20 people trying to cook dinner, relax, drink, chat..we managed well. Marg and Kala poured us some fantastic warm port and there was enough wine and bailey’s to get anyone a little tipsy…

Thanks to Pete’s -20 sleeping bag, 21 people and Jay’s radiating heat I managed to stay fairly warm throughout the night. I still have to work on getting comfortable on the hard surfaces…the thermo rest just doesn’t cut it for me.

Sunday proved to be rather adventurous. Pete, Ned and I managed to ski down a steep and deep slope with some minor debris coming down. Ned was showing off and hucked off a rock which caused us to look for his fallen ski for awhile….

We then skied up to the top of a “face shot powder run” just in time for Pete’s binding to break (at the top), Ned losing his ski (AGAIN!) and later on me falling through a hidden hole.
To top it off the highway between Whistler and Van was closed for a couple of hours… thanks to Ned we scored a couple of hours in a warm condo in Whistler, a movie and some hot tea before finally making it into my own bed in snowy North Van around midnight.

Another magnificent weekend shared with some fabulous friends and lots of fluffy white stuff.. where to this weekend??

Lovin’ the pow!