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Up the Mountain

Camden Snow BowlFolks are often surprised to learn that right on Maine’s midcoast is a Snow Bowl where from December thru spring there is skiing on Ragged Mountain.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe runs aren’t real long, but neither are the lines so a diehard skier can get his fill in a day.

DSC01721There’s no snow this time of year, but on October Sundays one can take the chairlifts up the mountain.

DSC01724Except for the fact that it got colder and colder as we went up the mountain and our hands turned to ice, it was a glorious experience.  Ordinarily, leaves have gone by but thanks to a warm, dry summer they are at their best late into October.

DSC01746I could only marvel at the beauty as we went higher and higher.

DSC01739At the top of the mountain, one can see forever.

DSC01731 (1)What is astonishing is the view of Penobscot Bay and the many islands that dot it.  How many places can you think of where it is possible to ski while looking out onto the water?

 

 

Ragged Mountain is not just for skiing.  Throughout the year, people can enjoy hiking and biking trails.

DSC01703It’s not just humans that enjoy being on the mountain!  Here, there is ample opportunity for everyone to find something to enjoy.

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Maine, photography

WPC: Descent

Toboggan championshipIn February each year, the National Toboggan Championships are held at the Camden Snow Bowl in Maine.  Talk about descent, it’s fast and furious and the challenge is staying on the toboggan. I’d much rather watch than descend!

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Maine

…and Snow it did!

Camden Snow BowlNow you wouldn’t think the midcoast of Maine would be a place for winter skiing, but 10 minutes from our house is the Camden Snow Bowl which this time of year is humming.  A few inches of new snow and more to come makes it a very fun place to be.

Camden Snow BowlKids here learn to ski young, and they’ll go up and down the slopes until the parents or grandparents yell uncle!  Don’t you wish you had that energy?

Camden Snow BowlThis ski area is not to be confused with fancy ski resorts.  Most days, skiiers are taken up the mountain on a T-bar though when the snow is good and the crowds are really big, the chair lift does operate.

Camden Snow BowlThe lines for the ride up the mountain can be pretty long, but no one seems to mind.  There’s probably as much time spent waiting as there is skiing  as the runs here are pretty short.   No problem, that just means more times to go up and down!

Camden Snow Bowl

After a while the cold weather forces a break so the skis come off

Camden Snow Bowland the lodge becomes crowded with folks warming up with hot chocolate

camden Snow Bowlor restoring energy with snacks brought from home.

Camden Snow BowlThen it’s back out where where the sound of laughter bounces off the mountain.  I love a child’s rosy red cheeks,

Camden Snow Bowlthe excitement in a kid’s face when she knows she’s gotten it right.

I’m not out there skiing any more, but there is joy in watching and with my camera in hand I love capturing those special moments.

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Maine

WoooooHooooo!

That’s the sound of tobogganer’s flying out of the chute for a short run down a very fast course.

Where is this?  Camden, Maine, home of the National Toboggan Championships.  Now, if you know Camden you may be thinking that is a funny place to have this competition.  Camden, after all, is on Maine’s midcoast, but it’s also touted as where the mountains meet the sea.  And so it does with mountains just high enough for skiing and tobogganing minutes from the center of town at the Camden Snow Bowl.

Two, three and four person teams come from all over the country to compete in this funfilled February event.  Teams are guys (how would you like to be the one on the back?)

and gals or a combination, and there’s even a category for kids, so everyone can get into the act.

Some teams come for the fun of it

while others are looking to win.

Sometimes a run doesn’t go too well

and bodies

and clothing articles go flying.  In fact, the end of the run looks to me to be as scary as the few seconds it takes to race through the chute.

It’s cold out there on the snowy slopes, and folks do whatever it takes to keep warm,

some enjoying the comforts of home!

As the day goes on and teams are finished, you might be right if you think it turns into one big party!

Well, that was my very fun winter Sunday.  What did you do to enjoy the day?

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