Christmas Eve Bikepacking in the Wind River Mountains

While everyone was tucked in their beds dreaming of sugar plums dancing in their heads, Studd Pyles and I packed our bikes and rode to Frye Lake to camp under the stars and watch the sky for Santa and his reindeer.

Riding up the switchbacks. It’s about 1500′ gain and 6 miles to where we camped next to Frye Lake.

My cockpit

 

Last light and post-holing across Frye Lake Dam to camp.

 

Little critters telling us stories in the snow.

 

“I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, “Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland / Through the Looking-Glass

 

My Mukluk and Studd’s Ice Cream Truck in their happy place, watching the sun set together.

 

As I cleared an area of snow for a campfire I came across a head stone. My guess is that Mrs. Norris’s ashes are scattered in this beautiful spot. I brought some bird seed for the chickadees so I put some on the rocks next to her marker. It’s my hope that the chickadees kept her company after we left on Christmas morning.

 

The makings for a perfect Christmas Eve ~ bikes and a bonfire. We had bourbon gouda cheese, smoked salmon, and mussels in butter for dinner. We also had a backpacker meal of chicken teriyaki that I spilled but we ate it off the snow (until we got down to bare dirt.)

Merry Christmas!  I bought this imitation aviator hat at Johnson’s Corner gas station/cafe in Colorado a few days before this trip. The hat is very warm even though it’s a cheap knock-off!  I love Johnson’s Corner because this is where I meet my Aunt Marty and Uncle Lucky for breakfast sometimes when I’m in Colorado.

We took a moonlit walk on the lake and watched Venus and Saturn set over the silhouetted peaks. Pure magic.

We kept the fire stoked for hours and were plenty warm.

 

“Kindness is like snow—It beautifies everything it covers.” — Kahlil Gibran

 

Christmas morning walk across the lake with white and stillness and beauty all around.

Winter bikepacking in the Wind River Mountains, Frye Lake

Christmas morning

On the 12th day of Christmas my true love gave to me….. a Merry Christmas bikepacking trip!

 I hope that our paths cross in the New Year my friends!

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