Sledding…Its all fun and games…Especially when you get a face full of snow!

So on Saturday, in the middle of a snowstorm, we ventured into Brewer, and Bangor to run some errands. Recent single digit temperatures had caused a freeze up in our water pipes that turning the heat up didn’t solve. I had to get under the trailer, and that meant I had to open up the plastic I had put up to stop drafts.

I didn’t have any more on hand to repair the damaged sections, so we went to one of the big box DIY stores. As I was checking out some other items I needed, I was shocked to see my son and wife checking out the sled inventory, and I was even MORE surprised to see them putting sleds in our cart.

As we finished up our errands, and got a bite to eat, I decided to cruise on by a local sledding hill in Kenduskeag. My son begged me to stop…Turns out he had been pestering my wife all day to go sledding, and she had told him we would probably go next weekend…But nobody told me that. I told him he could go down a few times, but warned him that he wasn’t really dressed for it.

After a few trips down the hill, he agreed he wasn’t really dressed for sledding. But that was only after I took a few trips down the hill myself. That was when I realized that I was too old for sledding. I mean WHAT was I thinking??? I am 46 years old, and quite a bit fluffier  than fit!

As I stood there making sure I wasn’t either dead, or dying, I saw my wife walking toward the hill, and SHE decided she was heading down the hill as well!

Before I could warn her that I may possibly be breathing my final breaths, and that she might want to reconsider, she was off with a scream off laughter, slight terror, a large serving of excitement, and maybe just a pinch of regret. She made it down the hill in one piece, and made it back up the hill in better shape than I was.

(It should be noted, that I DID suffer some pretty serious strain injuries just two short weeks ago, battling a monster trout in a body of water in the town of Etna. In all likeliness I really should be hospitalized under the care of specialists…At least, that is what my wife is fond of telling me.)

We had such a great time, that we decided we would go sledding again on Sunday, and we invited one of my son’s friends from school to go along with us.

I was excited to be going again. I had planned to bring my ice fishing sled with me, so I could go down again…See I am 6 feet tall, and most of the kiddie sleds are just too short for a man of my weight, and an almost complete lack of flexibility…Er, um, what I MEANT to say was my height! Yeah… Too short for a man of my HEIGHT!

At any rate, it turned out that my fishing sled was not where I thought it was. I was pretty upset about it! I mean, I was REALLY looking forward to go flying down a snowy hill in a plastic death trap!  Try as I might, I couldn’t locate it!

We loaded up the sleds we had, went and picked up my son’s friend, and away we went. As we neared the hill, it was obvious we were not the only ones who figured it would be a good day for sledding. There must have been almost a dozen other vehicles parked there, with kids ranging in age from three, to I would say thirty or so.

Near the bottom of the hill, two boys were working on constructing a jump, if I had to guess, I would say they were about eight or nine years old.

My son and his friend were afraid to go down, because those kids were in the center of the hill, near the only open slot, and they didn’t want to mow anybody down. In a few minutes, a small group of sledders had left, opening up another lane. My son and his buddy made their first run.

William got almost to the bottom, and his buddy got about halfway down and wiped out. They were laughing all the way back up the hill.011

My son took his second run, got stuck in a rut, and was on a direct course for the jump that was under construction. My son screamed a warning, but apparently the kids didn’t hear him, and he hit the jump at almost full speed, wiping out one of the boys, who never even tried to move.

None of the twenty to thirty-something year old  kids appeared to have noticed or cared, the boy was sprawled out in the snow, sobbing, and my son was trying to soothe him.

I called out to the folk standing around chatting and laughing, that there had been an incident, but nobody responded.

Finally, somebody who had been sitting in a parked car went down and rescued the boy, who didn’t appear to be injured, and the sledding continued.

My wife was lured out of the warmth of the van, by the siren song of children enjoying the snow, and decided that she needed to be a part of it.

I am not sure how many runs she made, before the unthinkable occurred. I was down at the bottom of the hill with the camera, trying to get some action shots of the adventures.

I never saw anything out of the ordinary, but she INSISTS that just as she neared the bottom of the hill, there was an entire herd of little baby bunny rabbits directly in front of her, and the only thing she could do to prevent a massacre was abort her run.

All I can tell you, is I saw her coming down the hill at roughly 153 miles per hour, when all of a sudden the sled pitched sharply, and she was ejected from it. She vanished into a cloud of white powder. Once the snow settled back down, I saw my wife laid out, face down in the snow, a good 50 feet from where she had crashed. The rope of the sled tangled around her feet, and the sled was behind her, miraculously undamaged in the violent impact. I was certain she was done for! But she looked up at me, and gave me the thumbs up.  It was AMAZING!

The next time Jen went down, William insisted on sharing a sled with her. just as they reached the bottom of the hill, they hit some untracked powder, and William received a face full of snow. By that time, we were all kinda hungry, so we decided to call it a day.

Snapshot 3 (1-17-2016 10-29 PM)

William gets a white wash!

We had all decided it was a great time, and planned on going again…But when I got home, there was a message from a friend of mine, who had gone by the hill on Saturday during the storm. He said that he had seen something he couldn’t explain, and that I should check my email. The pictures he sent to me, sent chills down my spine.

The big brute is walking off with the sleds!

What could quite possibly be a Sasquatch!

Now I am not saying I believe in Bigfoot, and I am not saying I don’t. I just know that there are some things you can’t explain…And this is one of them…

All I know, is I am glad we were not there at the same time as this great hairy beast!

This is the second time I have had a close call with a large ape like creature!  I hope there isn’t a third!

Doug Alley

About Doug Alley

I grew up in Bath, Maine in an upper lower class family with 3 step sisters, a step brother, and a little sister. After high school I spent 3 years serving in the USAF at Elmendorf AFB in Anchorage AK. I've competed in, and won, demolition derbies. I've competed in, and never won, stock car races. I am the 47-year-old father of an 11-year-old boy who is pretty sure he is smarter than I ever was. We live on a little less than an acre of land in a 1973 mobile home in Stetson with my wife Jen, some cats, a few chickens, and rabbits, and a couple of goats. I hunt, fish, camp out, dabble in photography, gardening, and I cook in variable degrees of near success.