and some snow time. We saw an opportunity to run north of the border for a canadian christmas and we just couldn't turn it down.
We loaded into the sprinter and were amazed at how comfortable even a long day on the road in almost freezing temps could be. We continue to be amazed at how fast, smooth, comfortable and uneventful road travel is when we aren't in the bus.
There's a chance we would be just as happy with the addition of the butt warmer only...but al in, the sprinter is a remarkably comfortable ride and we likely wouldn't have even made this trip if the bus were our only option.
Chad and Jess were kind enough to host us; so we pulled in, got a tour of their new home and got lazy. Well, except for the back to back to back holiday parties, which were an absolute blast but meant the first half of the day was spent recovering from the last party before getting ready to head out to he next one that evening. This crew definitely knows how to celebrate and we had a blast each and every night no matter whose house we were at or which group showed up that night.
Christmas day we stayed at Chad and Jess' where they hosted a christmas brunch (which put us all down for a nap) and then rallied for a old fashioned low country boil for christmas dinner. Absolutely decadent, and somehow we polished off what looked to be an absurd amount of food for 5 people.
We originally planned on heading back to portland right after christmas, but the group had extended an invite to squeeze into the cabin at whistler and now that we actually have the ability to drive uphill through the snow we couldn't say no. And for the record...snow there was! The PNW has been getting pelted with storms for the last 2+ weeks and there's more snow on the mountain (and at lower elevations) than i can remember seeing in years.
The weather was absolutely frigid so we mostly hunkered down in the cabin, enjoyed each others company, got in a few games and tons of stories and only ventured out for the occasional snow hike or a late night walk to the nearby lake which was already frozen over solid.
A few days in the snow and Jen and I caved into actually snowboarding on our last day. We haven't been on snow since we first started our savings push over 7 years ago and didn't have any gear, but the group somehow pieced together odds and ends to complete both of our setups and we hit the mountain for the day.
We love this crew so much and it's so awesome each time we have a chance to drive north and become a part again. Each time its like the family we missed while away and they always welcome us back with open arms. We've already started scheming ways to see the again without a few months passing in between.
To say i had forgotten how much fun and what a great workout it is would be an understatement. I don't think the smile left my face all day and i kept pulling the camera out of my pocket every few turns to snap another even better photo. Turns out they weren't actually all that much better than the last pic, but to our eyes it was all unmistakable beauty and we were both thrilled that we allowed ourselves the splurge to enjoy the day.
Sadly, now theres a really good chance we could be hooked again, so we would be wise to run away to the beach before we do something crazy like buying gear and mountain passes.
We made the long haul back from whistler to portland to make sure we were in town for NYE and Brock's birthday and celebrated the New Year with the fam. Low key night in except for dinner, but a terrific start to the year!
We are now giving ourselves a few days to catch our breath (and maybe eat/drink a bit healthier) after the holidays...and then get started on our new project. I haven't really immersed into the possibilities of the sprinter conversion just yet...but im thrilled to do so in the coming days.