Sunday, March 16, 2014

Overnight Cross-Country Skiing to Glacier Point Hut

This was a great adventure!  Rob, Nicole and I spent the weekend in Yosemite, cross-country skiing on the very last bit of snow leftover from a warm winter.  Any chance to get to the Sierras always proves to be a good time.
We started on the 10.5 mile road to Glacier Point at 11:00 am on Saturday. It was a bright and sunny day, most people were skiing in shorts and t-shirts. Five miles in, the snow ran out and we switched to sneakers to hike for a few miles.
The snow reappeared and we had a great ski for the last few miles to the hut. I was worried that I'd be able to complete the trek since being so sick in February but it was fantastic.
Just five hours of skiing and hiking later and Nicole and I arrived at the Glacier Point Hut. We somehow passed by Rob at the last mile. I spent a long half-hour convinced he had skied off the edge of the canyon. Very relieved when I saw him come around the bend!
The view of Half Dome and Yosemite Valley from the hut was almost too pretty to believe.
The three of us recharged with cups of hot cider and snacks in the hut. It's an incredible transformation, from souvenir stand in the summer to chalet outfitted with board games, a wood fire, bunk beds for 20 people and snowshoes in the winter.
Ryan, our host at the hut, provided a gourmet spread starting at 6:00. Hot nachos, wine and crudites for appetizers. Everyone ran outside to take photos of the full moon rising over the valley.
Hearty spaghetti, garlic bread, green salad and carrot cake for dinner. Nicole, Rob and I sat around the fire reading old National Geographic magazines and chatting with the other guests - mostly a large and very sporty family from Park City. Lights out at 10:00pm. The moon continued to shine brightly.
The sun rose over the sierras at about 7:00 am on Sunday morning.
A lot of sore skier muscles soothed over a hearty breakfast and plenty of hot coffee.
Everyone started gearing up pretty early, ready to head 10.5 miles back to Badger Pass.
It was another bright and sunny day. Warm enough for Rob to brush his teeth outside barefoot!
Grabbed our skis at 8:30 and hit the trail.
We hiked out carrying our skis for the first few icy miles. Goodbye Half Dome!
A beautiful golden coyote came within 10 feet of us to when we stopped for lunch halfway down. It happened too fast to grab my camera - but a very memorable experience!

The three of us made it out on the trail in exactly five hours again. Sore feet and sore muscles loaded up in the car to head home.

I would love to come do this Glacier Point Hut trip again when there's a bit more snow - less ice and slush. The skiing trail isn't for beginners - but definitely accomplishable for people in good shape with some cross-country experience.

7 comments:

Katie said...

Fantastic!

I've actually never been to Yosemite and have been trying to get there for years!

Looks gorgeous

Barbie said...

What a fun adventure! I've been a reader for years now & have always enjoyed all the adventures you & Rob participate in. I can't wait to see & read what lies ahead. Have fun & be safe! :)

MrsEm said...

Katie - you HAVE to go! Yosemite is the best :)

sarah said...

Yoy are too funny worrying about Rob, but I would have done the same!!!

Unknown said...

Oh! Glacier Point is one of my favorite places -- I was a ranger intern up there during the summer of 1998. I've only skied once at Badger Pass; looks like I need to get back there some winter to do the x-country trek and overnight at the GP Hut. Thanks for sharing!

Katie said...

I'm catching up on your posts after a few slogging weeks at work and am so inspired by this trip, Emily! It looks beautiful and like a wonderful way to see Yosemite, with little crowds, to boot. It's time to start planning a trip, methinks. Let's hope the Sierras don't have another rough year.

MrsEm said...

Glad to hear this inspired you, Katie! Spring is a great time for cross-country trips, as long as ther is still snow :)