Breaking Trail

Posted on January 24, 2012


On the Way Up Dan Moller Trail, First Tracks

It snowed well into the night last night in Juneau and I thought it would be a good time to go check out a trail that I have never been on when it’s snowy. A seven-minute drive got me to the head of the Dan Moller trail on Douglas Island across Gastineau Channel from Juneau. I broke out my old leather telemark boots and 210 metal edged touring skis for the occasion. A snow-shoer and their dog had already broken the beginning of the trail, but it wasn’t long before the tracks ended and I had the fresh snow to myself. At that point I was really wishing that I had some high-volume ski pole baskets because my poles were sometimes sinking in below my knees and there were a couple of times that even my long skis allowed me to sink in past mid-thigh. But there is something about fresh snow. It can be electrifying and energizing and I think it does have positively charged ions that give those who come into contact with it positive energy. I trudged until reaching a snow-machine trail that followed the old mining irrigation ditch that is named and supplied water for the Treadwell Mine. The trail then re-connected with the Dan Moller trail again and I followed that for a while. I had dreams of making it to the cabin at the end of the trail, but time caused me to turn around. When I reached the trail that I had broken, the first person I had seen my entire time out caused me quite a little surprise and he rode my tracks back to the trailhead. I felt a bit robbed, but realized that he actually made my ride down a little faster. Thank you stranger.

The Way Down (View toward Juneau. If you look carefully you can see some of the town)

Tonight we have some leftovers that need eating so I will be making tacos with our leftover roast that I will shred, season and serve with leftover Forbidden Rice served in gluten-free corn tortillas with a number of different fixings. We will have Olivier Riviere’s Rayos Uva Rioja 2008, a Louis/Dressner selection, with our meal. The partnership of Louis/Dressner consists of three associates who select wines from the Old World for import to the United States. Their portfolio consists of over 100 vignerons who were originally sought out by this team because of the principles that guide their winemaking. These standards include the use of wild yeast, hand harvesting, low yields, natural viticulture, none or minimal chaptalization, non-filtration, and non-interventionist winemaking. The final rule by which the group uses to judge their wines is enjoyment, the most important aspect used in judging wine. I seek out the selections of Louis/Dressner and have found that any of the wines of theirs that I have been able to find have never disappointed. Hopefully wherever you live, it is easier to find their selections than it is to find them in Juneau and you can see for yourself.