Winter? What winter?
After many fantastic winter hikes in the 2021/22 season and 2020/21 season, I was psyched for more of the same.
But it was not to be this year.
Apart from a very cold week in late December, and two snowy-ish days (around 1 inch each time), winter was non-existent this year.
I believe we had a relatively normal amount of precipitation for this time of year but it all fell as rain because of the mild temperatures.
The silver lining was that I was able to get out on my bike more often this winter, which was a huge positive.
Some highlights from this season:
8 December 2022: Winter SUP Session
A few hours of cold-weather paddling on the Potomac River with my friend Chuck. Great fun! We put in at the River Riders campground boat ramp and explored a few miles upstream before returning.
22 December 2022: Loudoun Heights in the snow
One of only two snowy hikes this winter! There was about an inch of slushy, wet snow on the ground.
I took one of my favorite winter photos up on the ridgeline of Loudoun Heights:
January overnighter on the bike
One of my goals this year is to camp at least one night each month. I managed an overnighter in January and March, but was too busy in February.
In January, I did a sub-24hr overnighter (an “S24O”) and rode from home to Killiansburg hiker biker campsite along the C&O canal. It was a super little trip!
Long winter rides on the C&O Canal
I’m prioritising the bike this year, so I’ve been making an effort to get out for long rides along the canal and neighbouring roads solo and with friends.
1 Jan: 50 miles along the canal upstream from home to dam 4 and return. Cold!
7 Jan: 44 miles, climb of Mar Lu ridge, behind Point of Rocks.
18 Jan: 36 miles downstream along the C&O canal with Paul.
25 Feb: 60 miles along the canal upstream. Cold! Snow flurries on the return journey. Rode with the only 2 other cyclists I saw that day – Eddie and Hannah – for 10 miles or so, in the middle.
3 March 2022: Raven Rocks in the snow
The only other snowy hike this winter, a really enjoyable climb up to the Raven Rocks lookout on the A.T. with Lexi.
Otherwise, there were plenty of great hikes and bike rides on my local trails, with family, with friends, and solo. But none with snow 😦
Hopefully, this isn’t the new normal for this area and next season we’ll get a decent showing of snow.