When I was a kid once we spent our Christmas in Idaho at the farm with our entire Tassie extended family. One night I ran to this tree in a rabid, sobby, blubbering pout. I stood near the tree, leaned on the tree, sighed and cried by the tree while I waited for my family and extended family to come looking for me, worriedly calling my name. That never happened and i eventually just quietly slipped back into the house, but ever since then it has been a bit of a destination for me. My cousins and I would light off to this tree at two in the morning, hooting and carrying on as loudly as possible after a midnight swim. Sneaked beverages were drunk by some at this tree, and I’ll even admit to a few smootches and grand finales to spectacular disagreements settled here. It is witness to so much that it just seemed to deserve mention.
That same winter when I we came for Christmas we had a spectacular snow. Like, FEET of snow. Anyhow, I have been my adult height pretty much since middle school and this snow was so copious that it went to the tops of my thighs! It was beautiful! I’m the youngest in my family and one of the younger cousins. Now that we are all middle aged I take pleasure in being the younger one, but in 1985 it wasn’t awesome. This place marks the spot where the bigger kids built a giant igloo. When they finally, after begging and antagonizing them, let me in the igloo they all scrambled out and promptly rolled the remaining giant snowball in front of the exit… effectively locking me in with someone’s gift of an aromatic toot. Oh to be 11 again.
It may not look amazing, but it is! This is the coolest sledding hill! It is mild, not too fast, but steep enough upkeep your cruising speed. The best part, however, is that in the right circumstances you can build a toboggan run that curves and twists through the woods for a super mellow yet thrilling ride. I love it. That sixth grade winter? EPIC.
Lake Gamlin (aka my grandpa’s lake) is the only lake I feel safe-ish walking around on in the winter. But even then it freaks me out! When I was a kid we cleared the snow off the ice, cut a hole in it, pumped fresh lake water over it and let it freeze to create a smooth skating surface. I was terrified of falling in that hole, but clearly I made it beyond that challenge.
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