Last night Nick and Pat came home from a day of snowmobile skiing in the Crazy Mountains at the same time as I returned home from EMT refresher at Moonlight. After a bluebird day of spectacular powder skiing in the high alpine, they’d had to tow the Kitty Cat (my snowmobile) out of the mountains with the Super Bitch (the sled bequeathed to Pat). Both sleds are 90s era junkers that rally like champs.
The Kitty, a ’95 Artic Cat ZR 580, is a little down in the dumps now, and hasn’t been so good in the rally department. It starts, but when you put the gas on it just peters out. The spark plugs keep fouling. Something bad in the fuel maybe. Luckily Pat fancies himself a budding snowmobile mechanic.
I spent the last three days inside at medical refresher for ski patrol, stewing over potential medical emergencies and hanging out in the base lodge at Moonlight Basin with old friends. After getting paid to patrol there the past five years, I somehow thought it would be a good idea to volunteer this year in addition to my new job editing the Big Sky Weekly et al.
Refresher was fun, but with the hour-long commute, those three days were very sedentary for me. The days prior to refresher I mostly worked editing and writing for the Weekly, and stayed up late nights doing what I hope were the final tweaks on a film I have been working on the past two months.
With all this inactivity my spark plugs are now as fouled as the Kitty Cat’s. In an attempt to stay sane, I’m learning to skate ski. Tonight, ski waxing was meditation.
This week we have newspaper #4 due (check out the new Big Sky Weekly, available around southwest Montana). Also, our first version of Mountain Outlaw magazine is going to press. Thursday I’m teaching alpine rope rescue at Moonlight, and that night the Bozeman Ice Fest begins. I can’t wait till Ice Fest, though I am also a little nervous.
Thursday December 9 (the first night of the Fest), will be the premier of Women at Work, a 26-minute film about a rock climbing expedition I took this summer with Lorna Illingworth and Madaleine Sorkin to the Cirque of the Unclimbables. The kick-ass soundtrack is from climber-musicians Jessica Kilroy and Aurae, Pterodactyl Plains, Odub, Tim Johnson and Holler N’ Pine. The show is at the Emerson Theater. Tickets are $5 at the door, and proceeds benefit Hyalite winter road access. I feel humbled to be part of this event, and I am also very excited for Friday, the women’s ice clinic.