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Tanis OTanis Takes Manzanita

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First Blue under His Belt





Hoodoo, Oregon

Elevation 4668 Feet


Monday morning rolled around.  Linda was quiet and let us sleep in a little while she got ready for work and left.  We got up, got some grub, some clothes, our gear and threw it into the Jeep.  The dog was flying around the house, hoping to get to go with us.  I felt a bit bad when I closed the door on him.  He should have peed in my shoes, like a normal dog would.  I would have.  It was day old snow on the mountains and Hoodoo was open from the top to the bottom of the hill.  I had some free passes from contract work I had done earlier in the year and knew that it was going to be a good day...and cheap!

Hoodoo, Oregon North Sister, Middle Sister, South Sister, Hodag

We rolled into the parking lot, got our stuff ready and a few hours later, we were on the snow, having a blast.  Tanis was in the Mountain Cubs getting lessons.  I decided to test my ankle and hit some moderate trails followed quickly by steeper terrain.  The top was misty and covered in clouds.  Every once in a while, the mist would clear across the mountain range and the Sisters would materialize out of the void of white cotton and blue skies.  I must have taken thirty pictures trying to get one that was going to turn out.  They ducked in and out view faster than I could hit the picture button.

I played around on Hodag's Horn before coming up to the front and hitting the Red Chair.  The lines are nice, steep enough to actually have to do something and some fun terrain.  There was still a bunch of powder that was good, but slow sitting directly off of the groomed runs.  Playing around on that was fun for a while, but I forgot how powder can cause my thighs to fill with warm battery acid.  The snow was decent, but I could tell it wouldn't last unless they got some more snow.  The runs were already getting muddy skid marks and there was still a lot of exposed stumps and rocks just off the main trails.

Hoodoo, Oregon Green Chair

I met up with Tanis during lunch and ate lunch with the rest of the Mountain Cubs and watched a seriously creepy ski movie.  I know it was supposed to be a kids movie teaching them about the safety rules for skiing, but seriously, it was creepy.  Imagine the 1980's hot pink and neon green, throw in some funky ski hats, large animal suits and, for whatever reason, grown men in large diapers, baby bonnets and Elton John sun glasses.  It was the grown baby-men that just pushed me over the top.  Why them?  I mean, the tiger, the dog and the other animals, ok, I can go along with that.  I am not saying there was anything inappropriate with the movie, just...yeah.

Tanis was very tired of the bunny hill and wanted to head up the big run.  I was stoked because he was excited to push himself a little.  Ed, the instructor that had been helping Tanis all day, was on telemark skiis and took Tanis down the terrain park, a blue intermediate run down the front of Manzinita Chair lift.  We hopped onto the lift and Tanis leaned into me and latched onto my arm.  I was expecting a bit of fear but he was extremely happy and enjoyed being up high and seeing the mountains.  It was one of those proud father moments that you look forward to and treasure for life.  We took the run for the rest of the day, increasing our speed each time.  Tanis didn't want to leave, but he was getting more and more tired, and, admittedly, I was getting tired too.  We got off the hill and before we were out of the parking lot, Tanis was completely asleep.