Winter Whatnots

Spring is finally here, and with it comes the warm temperatures and pollen. It also means it’s time for me to post about my winter activities. Winter tends to be the slow season when it comes to activities, but I managed to get out and keep life from getting too boring. Here is just a quick list of my winter highlights with some photos to boot.

Skytrain Lafarge Lake-Douglas Station
Took a ride on the Skytrain to the end of the new Evergreen extension in Coquitlam

Greater Vancouver

I went home for the holidays for two weeks. It was mostly to spend time with family, and to eat lots of yummy food (both home cooking and restaurants) that I can’t in NC. I had wanted to go skiing as Vancouver got plenty of snowfall this winter, and even got a friend to agree to it, but we both got sick and couldn’t go. I did manage to get a little bit though despite the cold, and here are the highlights:

Gastown Steam Clock
First time visiting the Gastown Steam Clock… which is strange given I’ve worked in Downtown Vancouver before and walked around a fair bit.
Tsawwassen Mills
The newest large shopping center in the Lower Mainland. Interesting decor pieces.

Yadkin Valley Wine Tour

Westbend Vineyards
Not the brightest day for a wine tour.

Back in NC, a couple of travel buddies and I went on a wine tour in the Yadkin Valley area. I went with a group about a year and half ago, and it was pretty fun. This time, we went with a tour company that drove us around to four wineries in the area. It was a bit of grey and dreary day, but we still enjoying tasting different wines in the Yadkin Valley. I’m not much of a wine connoisseur, but drinking with friends is always fun.

Dobbins Creek Vineyards
Tasting room at one of the wineries we hit. I think I actually bought a bottle of wine here.

Skiing in Wintergreen

Wintergreen skiing
Skiing in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The view is pretty decent (Click to enlarge)

While I didn’t get to snow the beautiful powder back in BC, I did go skiing for the first time in three years, and first time in the Southeast. We went to Wintergreen Resort in the Virginia Blue Ridge Mountains. It was a warm winter day, plenty of people, and not a whole lot of snow, but we still had fun. Even though I haven’t skied in the three years, I did reasonably well and only fell three times, the last of which was some newbie snowboarder running into me. Looks like I still remember how to ski. Still, the skiing is better up north, or in the areas where the mountains are a bit taller. Hopefully I’ll be able to ski north shore or Whistler when I’m back in BC some time.

Crowders Mountain State Park

Crowders Mountain State Park
The rugged cliffs of Crowders Mountain

I went to Charlotte area to visit a friend, and we went a hiked the nearby Crowders Mountain State Park. Being the closest “mountain” to the Charlotte area, Crowders Mountain is a popular park. It was a warm winter day, and we had to park a bit outside of the park because parking was full. It was a pretty easy hike up to the top, and the top of Crowders Mountain provides a pretty good view of the surrounding area along with rugged cliffs to explore for the adventurous. On a clear day, you can even see Uptown Charlotte, which we were able to do.

Local Events and Exploration

Last but not least, I did some exploring the Triangle area, and attended some interesting shows and performances. Below are the photo highlights:

Nutcracker Ballet at UNC Memorial Hall
Went to watch the Nutcracker ballet, which is a holiday tradition in these parts. First time I watched a professional ballet production, and it was pretty decent.
West Point on the Eno
Historic mill at the West Point on the Eno park
Monster Jam
First time watching a monster truck show. The arena was a bit small, but it was still fun and very loud.
Harlem Globetrotters
Also watched the Harlem Globetrotters. They got the crowd to do the YMCA dance. And of course there was plenty of basketball shenanigans too.
Umstead State Park
A little bit of winter hiking in Umstead Park (Click to enlarge)
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
The original campus of Wake Forest University… nowadays it houses the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (Click to enlarge)
Occoneechee Speedway
The Occoneechee Speedway is one of the original NASCAR dirt tracks. Nowadays it’s a historic park for people to walk around. (Click to enlarge)


Those are the highlights of the last winter. I’m already got some plans for adventures in the spring. Thanks for reading, and until next time.

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