Yesterday afternoon when I looked out my window I was struck by the change. The beautiful yellow of my neighbor's Aspen tree had turned a murky orange brown. Here in the bay area fall is departing us, the mountains are closing up, and we are settling in for the cold, wet winter ahead.
Sometimes I think the world ends in the winter. There are no summits to bag, no backpacking trips to plan, no thrilling adventures to look foward to. Instead the months ahead are mostly training for me. I'll be back on the trails running and hiking for fitness and climbing and trekking for fun again in the spring and summer.
If the mountains effectivley shut down to hiking and backpacking in the winter though, they also open to skiing and snowboarding and new climbing routes open for those adventurous souls who are looking to take them on. Of course camping is not out of the question either, its just cold an expensive.
Hiking and backpacking are still a realistic option in the Bay Area though. In fact winter is perhaps the ideal season to go hiking in the Bay, the only big disadvantage being the shorter days. Really the weather is quite nice usually and things hardly ever shut down due to snow (and if they do, all the more reason to go hiking!)
I'm sad to see the warm months pass, sadder still to see the golden hues and soft light of the fall slipping by. Seven months now until the mountain passes open again. I know I plan to make the best of them.
What will you be doing this winter? What do the winter months bring that you look forward to?