Up to Pioneer (near Tahoe) for late Christmas, joining Mom and Dad, brother John and his fiancee at Dad’s cabin. Slipped in under a major storm set to dump Saturday night. Mid-way through the day a dog followed us home from a hike – name of Faith, phone numbers on her tag but no one reachable. When the snow started we took her door to door in the car looking for an owner, no luck.

Snow tumbling furiously and sky cracking, made a makeshift home for her in Dad’s basement, then took off in his 4WD to move our cars under the snowline so we’d be able to get out next day. Bad timing. Took forever to get down the hill, cars spinning out all around us, snow falling so thick we could barely see to drive, even our 4WD w/snow tires having trouble and sometimes sliding.

On way back up, they closed the road in front of us. Too many accidents, too much risk. Got stuck eating bad calamari in a pizza dive while they plowed. Meanwhile Christmas dinner was getting cold at home. One of those moments that would be a lot more depressing if the adventure weren’t so ripe.

Three hours later back to the cabin safe, then an hour into dinner the power blew, leaving us with his pot-belly stove and candlelight to finish dinner. Didn’t stop us. Egg nog w/brandy and a whalloping game of Cranium by candlelight.

In the morning, found 18″ of snow on ground at 4,000 ft. Won’t get to snowboard this trip, but that’s okay. It’s Miles first snow.

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