Saturday, December 31, 2011

Ski Trip To Sunriver/Mount Bachelor

One of my good friend, a former x-country teammate in college, invited us to go on a ski trip in Sunriver, Oregon.  Lisa lives in Texas now, and had been living in Germany for a couple years, so I don't get to see her too often.  I've always thought it would be fun if our family's went on vacation together, but when she mentioned this trip I was hesitant.  It involved an 8+ hour car ride, and skiing, which neither of us have done in over 15 years.  But I wanted to see Lisa and her family (our kids are the same ages), and skiing could be fun, so I told Floyd I really wanted to go, so we did.

We borrowed my parents Suburu Outback for the trip and headed down.  It took us about eight hours to get there.  We stayed in a nice vacation rental in Sunriver, with Lisa's family and three other families (relatives and friends of relatives of Lisa).  There were seven kids running around, plus all the adults, but it was a good size house and didn't get overwhelming.  Sunriver is a funny town.  It is primarily a resort town, and the roads there seemed to be designed to be as confusing as possible.  There are no straight roads, and there are 10+ roundabouts.  But, it is really nice, with lots of trees, trails, pools, shops, etc.

Unfortunately the weather wasn't cooperating too much.  While it was nice to not have to deal with driving in the snow, when we headed up to Mount Bachelor for our first day of skiing it was pouring rain.  The good thing  was that no one was there, so it wasn't crowded at all.  The bad thing was that it was miserably cold and wet.  Selena was super excited about skiing and maintained her enthusiasm.  Allie was excited, but tended to get cold when she was actually outside.  We only got one pair of skis for the two of them to share.  Their foot sizes are only one size different, we figured Allie wouldn't want to ski that much, and I wasn't very confident in my ability to ski with either of the girls.

Selena had a blast, didn't seem to get cold, and didn't want to stop.  She caught on fairly quickly and was able to ski while holding onto a ski pole.  Lisa was amazing in helping Selena learn and showing us how to ski with her.  I did end up taking Selena once myself.  I was just happy that we didn't fall getting off the lift.  Selena claims responsibility for that feat.  She says she helped me keep my balance.  Selena did graduate and go down the Marshmallow run once with Floyd after she found out her friend, Lisa's daughter, did as well.

Allie liked skiing, but apparently did not like taxing up to the lift.  There was a slight uphill, and she did not like Floyd squeezing her between his legs and nudging her up.  But while she was actually skiing she liked it and she told everyone that she went on the lifter.

We based ourselves at the Sunrise lodge.  There is a free lift called Carousel that goes up a beginner hill.  Kids 5 and under ski free.  There was a web special a few weeks before we went that we got 3 day passes for $99/person (regularly lift tickets are $75/day).  In retrospect I wouldn't have bought the passes and just bought a half day ticket for me one day, and for Floyd the other day.  In having to take turns taking the girls out and taking turns watching the girls neither Floyd or I got to ski a whole bunch.  Lisa, her husband, her sister, and her parents were awesome and helped us out watching the girls so we got to ski more than we would have if they weren't there and willing, but still we didn't get that many runs.  We were both impressed, that even though it had been so long, and neither of us were that great to begin with, we still remembered how to ski, and it all came back fairly easily.

The second day of skiing, the conditions started out better with snow, but by the time we left it was switching between rain and snow.  We decided to go to the Mavericks recreation center and go swimming on the last day, instead of hitting the mountain again.  We were tired, and didn't really feel like getting all wet, and then driving straight home.  There was also reports that conditions wouldn't be good over Mount Hood pass and we figured leaving earlier rather than later would be better.  We ended up driving north to Yakima and going over Snoqualmie instead.  But we got unlucky it snowed some on our way to Yakima, and it started snowing right before we got to Snoqualmie pass, so it was a bit hairy going over.  But we made it safely thanks to Floyd's excellent driving and being able to take advantage of all-wheel-drive.

For the drive we packed lots of snacks, and had the iTouch and Nook Color for entertainment.  Books on "tape" are a big hit with Selena.  I had downloaded a Magic School Bus story from the library that Selena really liked plus our standard Robert Munsch and library mp3 downloads.  I was just bummed that most of the library downloads are in WMA format and I couldn't get them transferred to any device.  They are supposed to work on the iTouch, but I was trying to do it at the last minute and kept on getting errors.

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