With the snow and all of the moisture that we receive on the Western Slope, Vail and most of Eagle County are excellent places to find fungus, especially edible types of mushrooms. I am no expert but I enjoy looking for them when I am hiking to a high mountain lake to fish for Cutthroat Trout, or other varieties of trout. Occasionally I go out to just look for edible mushrooms. The season extends depending on weather conditions from April to October.
Many people have their favorite locations, such as, Oops, if I told you then I would have to kill you. You get the idea. I personally stick to a couple of mushroom varieties with which I am personally familiar, but there are many edible mushrooms that grow here. Symposiums and classes on the subject are available locally each summer. One of the local newspapers, the Vail Daily, is attentive to the subject and publishes information about the classes and shows pictures from time to time. Two small books that I use are: 1. The Audubon Society Pocket Guides, Familiar Mushrooms, North America, by Peter Katsaros and Alfred A. Knopf, and 2.
Chanterelle, a rocky mountain mushroom book by Millie Miller and Cyndi Nelson. My two favorite mushrooms to cook with and eat are the King Bolete and the Giant Puff Ball. They are such a pleasure to find and the King Bolete is very beautiful. Sometimes they are plentiful and sometimes not. It’s a beautiful day in Colorado, Bob Essin
Above 10,000 elevation, there is still snow in the trees and gullies and north facing slopes. Call the United States Forest Service local offices (Eagle 970-328-6386, Minturn 970-827-5715) to try to get specific information about a certain trail or location. Until the snow is gone on the peak due north of the Vail Golf Course (seen at various points when you drive through the Valley on Interstate 70, I have always called it Bald Mountain) the Gore Range and Holy Cross lakes above 11,000 feet elevation are still frozen and have snow leading up to them. Snow on the trails makes it hard to follow the trails and generally hiking risks are increased even if you are using snow shoes. For information on trails locations and destinations for hiking and ski touring, THE VAIL HIKER And Ski Touring Guide by Mary Ellen Gilliland is also a great source. It has been updated at least once but changes occur to trailheads and trails themselves from time to time. Again, for the most current information check with the United States Forest Service. The Vail Hiker contains when written good descriptions and partial maps. You can obtain more detailed maps to take with you on the trips (hikes or ski tours) also. When you do one of the hikes, you will see that there are often at least 2 or 3 more hikes in the general area, even from the same trail head that can be done. It is only a quick drive to Summit County for additional hikes and tours that are described in THE SUMMIT HIKER And Ski Touring Guide. Again one of the suggested and described hikes or tours may lead to many more.
My previous blog on this subject-long story short (too long), my son won a set of golf clubs and a fitting with TrueSpecGolf.com, I went to the Biltmore in Miami in January 2015 for the fitting, and I said goodbye to a Vail real estate-golf friend that died before I even received the clubs which arrived in February. I had delayed seeing Roger and Jackie for too long and being able to do that was much more important than a set of clubs. I value the people I have gotten to know in this business much more than the remuneration it has provided for me. Before coming to Vail, I had another life in another place with more money and those kinds of strokes.
I have now played numerous rounds with them. They are not second nature to me yet, but let’s just say I am very encouraged. After the fitting and before I received the clubs (Mizuno 350 irons, Exotic fairways 7,5 and 4, Taylormade SLDR 25 degree utility, Taylormade R-15, all shafts ACCRA except the Driver), I actually did more reading on the subject than before (which was a lot). Several weeks ago, I went to a demo of new clubs to hit a full range of the Mizuno irons, including the ones I received. I wanted to see what the same irons and even different irons felt like with the steel and graphite shafts provided standard by Mizuno. It took Rory about a year to get back to his old self and better after he switched to Nike, and of course I just had to second guess my fitter Andy. Andy was right on and I am more than content with the clubs and shafts, but not with my game (ever). My index should start dropping soon, if only my age would.
The Vail/Eagle County golf season is in full swing now. The Vail Golf Men’s Club at the public Vail Golf Course has already played 4 times. The course is in great shape as are all the courses in the Valley (see previous blogs for more information) and/or Google it of course.