Saturday, December 24, 2011

Flor'Easter Backcountry & First World Problems

I’m on my way to a new adventure.
The week between Christmas and New Year’s often heralds the beginning of the ski year for me: that is, if you don’t count an occasional October snowstorm or a few turns down the White Ribbon of Death.  So while most people would jump at the chance to take a trip to warmer climes this time of year, vacationing a thousand miles from a skiable slope during this week is akin to me being sent to my room for a week. 

Last year I lucked out when my brother came up with a God-send of a plan.  I couldn’t say “yes” fast enough when he suggested that our families get a condo near Mt. Washington, NH for the week and spend the holidays surrounded by mountains and snow.  It was awesome.  I skied for a week straight.  My mom skied.  My wife skied.  My nephews even skied.  I was in skiing heaven!  
"You think this is bad? Check out
the backseat of my minivan."
Unfortunately the trip failed to set a lasting precedent when it was ended with a flight canceling Nor’Easter.  My poor brother was forced to DRIVE back to South Carolina with his wife and two young rascals.  And everyone knows that the memories of marathon suffering in a car don’t fade easily.  In fact, WWI veterans complained less about trench warfare than those who have had to endure a twenty four hour drive with two young children.  At least they had room to lie down in the trenches.  
If I haven’t said it before, I owe you one, big brother. 
Oh no. Florida again?
Well, this year it was time for a new plan.  Unfortunately this plan didn’t involve mountains.  This isn’t to say that I have a bad time whenever I go to Florida.  Free food and lodging as well as excellent company at the in-laws go a long way to dull the pain.  But at the start of ski season my thoughts tend to be elsewhere.

Instead of living somewhere a thousand miles from the present, I’ve decided to dedicate myself to finding some adventure in the wilds of central Florida.

I’ve arranged for a mountain bike rental, and I’ve already scoped out some places to explore.  I’ve even enlisted the help of an old friend who will show me some biking spots on the Gulf coast.
So join me this week as I go beyond the strip malls, golf courses and mega-condo developments to explore the Florida backcountry.  

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