Sky lanterns released from Birch Hill on solstice

Today was winter solstice and it was the coldest day this season at Birch Hill. Skies were clear and temperatures dropped from 20 deg F before sunrise to  below zero in the early afternoon:Solstice temp at Birch

The sun barely arched above the horizon casting a beautiful orange hue to the hoarfrost covered trees. After our ski, we launched two sky lanterns from Birch Hill:

Ski lantern launches

and they climbed quickly above warming hut and skyward.

Green lantern rises

Bill Husby, launch leader, commented that the sky lanterns were for Russell Lizotte ( and Lars Spurkland (, who during their lives soared as volunteers of the nordic ski community in Alaska.

On the shortest day of the year, we remember two who gave skiers a lot of pleasure during their too short lives.



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