April 2018

When redesigning JaredManninen.com in 2017, one of my plans was to build my newsletters directly on the website. This ads up-to-date content to the site, provides an archive of past newsletters, makes the newsletters available to everyone (rather than being trapped in MailChimp isolation), and enables you to comment directly on each newsletter (post your message at the bottom and I’ll respond as soon as I can). Once built on my site, I copy and paste the content into the MailChimp newsletter format and send it via email.

Although I’ve managed to accomplish this for many months, I’m finally acknowledging that it takes more time and effort than I’d like to admit. To streamline this process I’m going to continue to build the newsletters on my site, but then provide a brief introduction to them (via MailChimp) along with a link to their corresponding JaredManninen.com webpage. I understand this won’t be as convenient for you because you’ll have to travel to my site to read the entire newsletter. However, in the long run, the one click you’ll have to make will eliminate dozens of steps and lots of time consuming formatting for me. Besides, these newsletters look so much better and are easier to read on my site than in the email format, so I hope you stick around.

Copyright © 2018 Jared Manninen

Cross-country skiing at Tahoe Donner Cross Country Ski Area on March 4, 2018. © Jared Manninen

Based on the photos I’ve posted, you might have deduced that Lake Tahoe received some significant snow in the last month. Needless to say “miracle March” did not disappoint. Things were looking so dire by February, that I wasn’t sure I’d get more than a couple dozen days of cross-country skiing this season. Thankfully, with March’s near-record snowfall I’ve managed to get in 53 ski days so far. I’m shooting for a total of 60, but we’ll see how all of that plays out in the days to come. Lake Tahoe is supposed to receive about two inches of rain this weekend which will wash away much of our snow and bring about flood conditions in many locations.

It’s amusing to me that I find myself frequently checking the forecast and talking about the weather. I always thought that discussing the weather was reserved for small talk and “old” people. But when living in the mountains and working in the outdoor recreation industry, keeping an eye on the weather is simply good practice.

Copyright © 2018 Jared Manninen

Sunrise viewed before work from Boot Hill at Tahoe Donner Cross Country Ski Area on March 18, 2018. © Jared Manninen

During the winter, not only does more snow yield more days of play and work, it encourages me to be more flexible and conscious of my route selection both when playing outdoors and when driving to work. Heavy snowfall usually causes the west shore of Lake Tahoe (specifically Emerald Bay) to temporarily close due to avalanche danger. When this happens, I’m required to drive around the east shore to get to work. Twice this winter, under those snowy conditions, my typical hour and a half one-way commute to Truckee took me over three hours to complete. During the 2016/2017 Snowpocalypse, this was the norm and, in fact, sometimes it took over four hours to make the drive. Full disclosure … I stay with friends while working in Truckee so I don’t have to make that commute each day. However, those 3+ hours of driving in whiteout conditions up and over mountain passes on roads often filled with tourists (i.e. people not familiar with or savvy about driving in blizzard conditions) can make for quite the adventure.

Believe it or not, I’m grateful to live in a place where the weather plays such an integral role in my day-to-day life. A byproduct or result of this daily adventure routine of mine is that it forces me to perpetually evaluate what it is and what is not important in my life. I’ve become more present in the moment and more realistic about what I can accomplish on any given day or week. And for better or worse, it’s caused me to let go of some activities and people in my life that tend to require more energy, attention, and logistical coordination than others. As much as I would love to hang out with all of my friends and play to my heart’s desire, that will simply never be the case. There is only 24 hours in a day, after all.

Copyright © 2018 Jared Manninen

Cross-country skiing in the rain in Washoe Meadows State Park on March 20, 2018. © Jared Manninen

Monday night I returned home from a 5-day work stint at the cross-country ski center. Normally I’m not away for that many days in a row, but because it’s nearing the end of the season I took the work. Then, during my subsequent days off I’ve had some appointments to keep and was gifted a recently felled tree (i.e. firewood for next winter). So, I spent some hours (and lots of calories) rolling those heavy rounds up the hill from my neighbor’s house and down the road to my yard. I still have a long list of tasks and projects to accomplish, and would’ve much preferred to write another Tahoe Trail Guide article, design another Tahoe Swag infographic, or just finish this newsletter days ago, but when opportunity comes knocking I’m compelled to answer. Again, there’s only so much time in a day (and a lifetime), so one has to frequently ask themselves whether or not they’re making the best use of it.

Copyright © 2018 Jared Manninen

View of Freel Peak (left of center) and the Angora burn area on March 26, 2018. © Jared Manninen

Here are the articles for Tahoe Trail Guide articles that I wrote in March. The first is another installment for the backcountry planning segment, the second is an article about cross-country ski bindings, and the third is about cross-country skiing at Echo Lakes in Desolation Wilderness.

Click an image to read its article.

The following is a short video about how to get in and out of your cross-country ski bindings. Although this a relatively simple task to accomplish, I run across many people (at my job in a rental shop at a popular Lake Tahoe cross-country ski area) that still have some difficulties in doing so. This video features NNN, NNN BC, 3-Pin (NN), and SNS Pilot bindings, which represents the binding systems most often used today. I intend to continue to produce these short outdoor recreation-related “how-to” videos, as they are fun to make and constitute relatively challenging multimedia projects. Most of these videos are in response to being asked some of the same, or similar, questions repeatedly by customers so I’d like to think they’re helpful. And you’ll probably hear me ask frequently to please subscribe to my YouTube channel.

Here is a poster for my Tahoe Swag collection that acknowledges the fact that Lake Tahoe is actually located in California and Nevada. This view is from Castle Rock, which is near Stateline on the Nevada side of the south shore. I modified the color palette to reflect a more rustic or vintage look.

Copyright © 2018 Jared Manninen

Click the image to view it at my RedBubble account and to see what types of prints are available

Thanks for being a part of my life. Until next time…

-Jared Manninen

Tahoe Trail Guide is an online magazine for sharing my knowledge about hiking, backpacking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing, as well as information about traveling to (and through) the Lake Tahoe region. I refine that information for a younger audience and produce it in a printed format under the title Wilderness Activity Books. Lastly, Tahoe Swag is a collection of art and design products I create based on my love of the outdoors and appreciation for Lake Tahoe.

Categories: Newsletters
Tags: #2018

Comments (2)

  • Joan Treppa . April 5, 2018 . Reply

    Great how-to video of getting into the various ski bindings! Very helpful. My husband Mike has the NNN bindings and has always had issues with a smooth snap in. In your video, you specifically point out that the foot should not be at an angle and should remain level. This may be what is causing his difficulties. Thanks for the great tip! Also, the photos are fab as usual! I’m wondering if the second one with the sunburst between the trees will be uploaded to RedBubble? I’d definitely order note cards with that image!

    • (Author) Jared Manninen . April 5, 2018 . Reply

      Hey Joan, thanks for the comments. I intend to upload a number of new photos to my RedBubble account soon, so I’ll be sure to include the sunburst image 🙂 As far as getting into the bindings, Mike might be trying to click in at too severe of an angle (in relation to the ski). Although the bar is at the front of the boot, it’s still technically under the toe (not actually in front of it), so the toe of the boot might just be bumping into the binding’s bumper.

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