3/10/2013 6:53:00 PM
SUNSHINE, GREAT COMPANY, wildlife and an endless trail system seem to highlight the Nordic skiing around Yellowstone National Park (YNP). With numerous options for places to ski from Rendezvous to the trail systems in and around the park, you have miles (kilometers if you’re true Nordic skier) of trail to keep you and your friends busy for days and days or as quick way to take in some of the other activies offered around the resort.
Even with a late start leaving Big Sky, my girlfriend Kari and I set out for our adventure to YNP. Enjoying the scenic drive through the park boundaries, wildlife and mountain ranges seem to be a given no matter the day. Catching a glimpse of a Coyote, heard of Elk, and a few Big Horn sheep, the drive alone made the trip worthwhile.
Arriving at Freeheel and Wheel around 1pm, we still had plenty of daylight to rent a pair of classic skis for myself and venture out to the Riverside Trail. Skiing along with the entire groomed trail to ourselves, we had plenty of time to take in all our surroundings.
First stopping at a quick pull off by the river, Kari and I took the time to sit and chat while taking in the breathtaking views. With the Taylor Hilgards in the background and the relaxing sounds of the river trickling past us, we quietly rested and soaked it all in. Just before we left, we spotted a small red fox that seemed to be checking us out, wondering why we were hanging out at his special spot.
Venturing further down river to a second and nearly equally as scenic pullout, we once again took the opportunity to rest and enjoy each other’s company. Spotting animal tracks along the other side of the river that resembled Elk tracks, we figured we must have just missed him/her so we set our sights for the trailhead and eventually Freeheel and Wheel.
The beautiful scenery and an opportunity to experience a few of Montana’s many wonders made for an outstanding day.