February, 2017: Where is he?!


February 1-  Swam masters at The Kroc Center! Great to see my swimming friends!

Jenny and I ran errands, which was fun and satisfying, and spent the afternoon at her cozy home as she read for book group and I worked on paperwork.   I met Scott DuCoeur, Ben Mandell and Mike May at Capone’s.  Sweet.


February 2- Skied on 12″ of ice on Fernan Lake with Betsy Bowen,  Sheryn Olson and Jenny Wayman.  Attended Kootenai Health Banquet at The CdA Resort and Jenny received recognition for her 25 years of service.  Finished eating all of the cookies I made earlier in the week. They were good!

Jenny!  What a day!
Fernan Lake, a half mile from downtown Coeur d’Alene
Sheryn  Olson and Jenny, Betsy and David’s  shadows on Fernan Lake

Slept at Jenny’s

February 3- Swam masters at The Kroc Center!

Slept at Jenny’s

February 4-  Jenny and I urban skied to the library and looked for materials about Costa Rica, since we’re going there in April!

In the evening, I went to Katie and Randy Palmer’s “Welcome to the neighborhood!” party and Jenny went to a Phantom of the Opera film, with the Spokane Symphony.  I saw many of my Sorensen friends, and many other good folks.  Great night!


Slept at Jenny’s

February 5- Jenny worked.  I skied Schweitzer with Dale and Cathy Gephart, soaked in the outdoor hot tub and watched the Super Bowl with them. Dale made brats for dinner.  Great day!

Cathy Gephart skiing Stash at Scheweitzer.  Lots of snow!!


Slept at Jenny’s

February 6- Jenny worked.  I packed and did laundry, drove to Spokane and had lunch with Midge Thysell’s sister,Ruth Pearson, attended the rehearsal of the Sorensen choir, Canto de Sorensen, and went to Capone’s for our weekly Monday gathering- and Jenny joined us, which was very fun. 🙂

Ruth Pearson, age 94, Midge’s sister

The amazing Canto de Sorensen choir, where I worked the past 17 years.  I had a wonderful visit to rehearsal. Bravo, Charlene Babb, Canto director!

Slept at Jenny’s

February 7- Skied Schweitzer with Jenny, Betsy Bowen and Sheryn Olson and it was a 10 of a day!


View from the new lodge at the top of Schweitzer



Click on this VIDEO of Jenny skiing the last run of a glorious day!


Slept at Jennys’

February 8- Left Coeur d’Alene in the middle of the afternoon and drove to McCall, Idaho. Roads were bad in Coeur d’Alene, but better as I moved south.  Arrive in McCall at 9 p.m., had a sandwich from Albertson’s and went to bed at The Scandia Inn.

Signs along the way…:)



Slept at The Scandia Inn. Kristofer and I stayed here in 2005. 🙂

February 9- My plan was to ski Brundage Mountain today, but it was pouring rain.  I drove to the mountain, just to look, and then went to Salmon River Brewery and had a slow day of watching Duke/ North Carolina and UCLA/ Oregon, both great basketball games.

Why I didn’t ski at Brundage Mounatain



Lunch at Salmon River Brewery instead of skiing

Slept at The Scandia Inn

February 10- After a long breakfast and writing session at the Shore Lodge in McCall, Idaho, I drove to Sun Valley. Galena Pass was closed because of an avalanche, so I had to take the long way around, through Boise.

Breakfast and writing at The Shore Lodge
Crazy winter kayakers and rafters on the Payette River
Payette River, along Idaho highway 55
Payette River
Along the Payette River, south of McCall, Idaho
South of Sun Valley, heading north on highway 75
Claudia, Gary, Howie, Rhonda, Carolyn and Alex, at Howie and Rhonda’s

Slept at Howie and Rhonda Schaff’s

February 11- Skied Sun Vally (Baldy Mountain) with Howie and Rhonda, Alex Kloekke, Gary Gruver, Lizzy and Ben, and Allen, who is in charge of the Sun Valley Ski School.


Crowded at the start of the day as people grabbed the powder…and then the lift lines disappeared
360 degrees of mountains
Christmas Bowl on Seattle Ridge, where we skied most of the day
Christmas Bowl
Howie. Lunch time.

Sun Valley is a HIGH end resort.

Unusual lighting for a ski resort 🙂
And a fireplace…
and fresh rolls.
Our view during lunch
Seattle Ridge Lodge


with granite counter tops in the bathroom…and an attendant.


No, I didn’t ski Inhibition. 🙂
Fireplace in the River Run Lodge
Painting of the LIFE magazine article about the 1936 opening of Sun Valley Resort

Slept at Howie and Rhonda’s

February 12- Cross country skied about 10 miles north of Sun Valley with Howie and Rhonda Schaff and Carolyn Gruver- and Bear and Daisy. 🙂


The sky!


Howie Schaff, with Carolyn leading the way

Enter a caption

Howie and me 🙂


Carolyn, Howie and me


Rhonda Schaff

Slept at Howie and Rhonda’s- another kindness of theirs, as they returned to Boise early in the evening and let me stay in their beautiful home

February 13- Started the day with a beautiful note from Jenny, then a delightful conversation with Claudia and Alex Kloekke over coffee at Java, in Ketchum. I stayed there and wrote, before doing a little grocery shopping and heading to Hailey for an evening with Jenny’s friend, Robbie Cowan.


Robbie in front of her lively house in Hailey, Idaho


Robbie’s kitchen

February 14- After a delightful morning of coffee, eggs and conversation at Robbie’s, I returned to Ketchum to take pictures, have lunch and write a bit at Starbucks.

I stopped a man on the street and asked for a recommendation for lunch. He said, “I own Despo’s Mexican Restaurant around the corner. I’m Jim.”

“Then that’s where I’m eating,” I said.  The food was excellent and Jim talked with me and reduced my bill.  🙂 It was one of those little treats in life.



Bathroom at Despo’s.  I always think of tapatio-loving Scott DuCoeur, who travels with it,  when I see references to hot sauces. 🙂
Sun Valley resident Ernest Hemingway photo in the vault at the bank converted to a Starbucks

After five hours at Starbucks,  writing and organizing pictures, I left Ketchum at 5:00 p.m., returned Howie and Rhonda’s house key to Carolyn Gruver, and started toward Salt Lake City.  About 8:30 I was tired and checked into a Super 8 in Heyburn, Idaho.


February 15- Drove three and a half hours from Heyburn to Salt Lake City and skied Brighton in the afternoon.

Southern Idaho
Near Ogden, Utah, the first grass I’ve seen in months. 🙂
Brighton Ski Resort, about 45 minutes from Salt Lake City.  Brighton and Solitude are next to each other and Alta and Snowbird are in the next canyon.
Brighton Ski Resort




Avenues Hostel in Salt Lake City- $25/ night, including breakfast, and quite nice.
After skiing….the Utah Jazz were in town!  Utah beat Portland.  I got to see Gordon Hayward, George Hill, Damian Lillard and others!
I stopped in a Salt Lake bar after the game.:)

February 16- Skied Brighton for the afternoon.   A bit icy.  Skied out.  More snow coming this weekend?  After skiing, I drove an hour to Provo, Utah, drove and walked around the gorgeous BYU campus, ate at the BYU Creamery and went to the BYU/ San Diego men’s basketball game.

Brighton on a hard-pack day


On the way down the mountain, I stopped here for a beer and was reminded that ti’s Utah and I’d have to order food to accompany my beer.  🙂
At Barnes and Noble.  I’m in Utah.



On the BYU campus.  Beautiful, I thought.



Note pasted on the mirror in the men’s bathroom in the BYU Student Center


BYU Law Library
BYU Marriott Center.  Particularly impressive was BYU’s Nick Emery- 26 points and a scorer, passer, defender and leader



Slept at Avenues Hostel in Salt Lake City

February 17- Today I skied Solitude (sort of), which is adjacent to Brighton.  One can actually ski between them with a pass either.  But, after a week without snow, and rain last weekend,  the mountain was icier than I enjoy, and it was overcast and hard to see.  Poor me.  I didn’t ski long.  Tomorrow should be better, although crowded because of Presidents’ Weekend, but it was snowing as I left today.

It started to snow as I left for the day.


On the way back from skiing, I stopped at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, where Jake Wayman attended.
Also stopped at the Sugar House Coffee Shop, which Jenny told me about.  it was full of students with laptops or deep in conversations.  Cool place.

February 18-  Decided not to ski, but to go to the Fairmont Aquatic Center, in Sugar House, and swim and work out. At 8:00 p.m. I went to University of Utah/ UCLA gymnastics meet, and I was surprised to see the arena packed with over 15,000 people.

This video is of the final competitor from the University of Utah.  It’s worth 1:48 to watch it, I believe.  I especially enjoyed the audience’s enthusiastic support- for both teams.

February 19- I drove up Big Cottonwood Canyon to ski Solitude.  I was encouraged that it was snowing….


but I couldn’t see, with the heavy snow and fog



 so I left after a few runs…


and drove down Big Cottonwood Canyon…



to Great Salt Lake!





This surprised me!  On average, Great Salt Lake is only 13′ deep!


And then I took a walk around the neighborhood and was greeted by this sign. 🙂 Ah, the old America!!


 And I saw these- on Feb. 19th:)


And another welcoming sign:)


And I took these pictures of the capitol at sunset.



The night ended with a beer at Copper Common in downtown Salt Lake.  While I ate, I enjoyed the energy of the couple behind the beer. They were laughing, smiling, leaning toward each other, touching hands.  As I left, I took a gamble and  plopped myself next to him and said, “I enjoyed watching the energy between the two of you.”

They smiled and said thanks- and I left.  I’m glad I took the risk.


February 20- Super windy on the mountain, so I wrote at the hostel and had a very productive Genius appointment at the Apple store.   I love to sit there and work and ask questions when I get stuck. They are very helpful.   I swam for two miles at the Fairmont Aquatic Center and then had  a bad dinner at “Burger Habit.”

February 21-  Skied Solitude in the morning and then drove from Salt Lake City to Jackson, Wyoming.  I was met by a significant blizzard and the five hour drive took me more than eight hours.  Ate dinner in Jackson at “Local” with Greg and his girlfriend, Sami.  Great to be here!



February 22- Skied Jackson Hole with my nephew, Greg Walters, and Steve and Peggy Sue Juergens, college friends from Seattle. After skiing we sat in the “Alpenhof” and talked with Greg, cleaned up and went out for dinner at “Artisan Pizza” with Greg, Steve and Peggy Sue.


February 23- Skied Jackson Hole.  Ate dinner at “Q Roadhouse” with Gary, one of Steve’s partners,  his wife Rachel and Steve and Peggy Sue and Greg and Sami.  Gary is a fanatic skier and he and Greg connected. 🙂


February 24- Skied Jackson Hole with Greg, Steve and Peggy Sue.  Went to the “Million Dollar Cowboy Bar” and then to the first class restaurant, Bistro, for dinner with Greg, Sami, Steve and Peggy Sue. 

February 25- Skied Grand Targhee with Steve and Peggy Sue and about 30 other skiers with whom they traveled from Seattle.  Grand Targhee was fabulous- fresh snow,  some sun later in the day, great terrain, and a helpful mountain guide named David.  On the bus ride home we stopped in Victor and picked up pizzas to eat on the bus.

After a shower, Greg and I went to “Sidewinders,” where Sami is a bartender, and ate a salad and watched half of the Gonzaga/ BYU game-  which Gonzaga lost after 29 consecutive wins!

February 26-  I left Jackson Hole at 6 a.m. with 680 miles to go to Bend. I didn’t expect to make it the whole way, but for some reason I stayed energetic and pulled into Bend about 7:30 p.m. Emily and Aaron had a great dinner ready- and we watched The Oscars. 🙂

February 27-  Aaron worked and Emily and I went to a Bend coffee shop and looked at her pictures and talked about her recent Costa Rica trip.  It was fun to learn about her trip and will be very helpful as Jenny and I plan to go there in April!

February 28-  Aaron and I went to Mt. Bachelor for a couple of hours in the morning.  There were nine inches of fresh snow, which I’m trying to learn to ski, but visibility was challenging.  Aaron is smooth.

We picked up Emily, drove to Tumalo and hiked two and a half  miles into the waterfall, in windy sunshine.

I was painfully exhausted that night- a bit scary how achey I was- and I think it was mostly from three falls I took in my quest to learn to ski powder. 🙂


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