Thanks to the generosity of Jim Lawyer, I had the chance with my great friends Benjamin Dulchin and Philip Drew to sample a bit of winter, finally. We went to Jim's hut and on our last day hit a spot not in the guides, Hoffman Notch, just east of the Northway at North Hudson. It was fantastic, and an excuse to post photos. It was also a good weekend to shake out new gear. In Philip's case, he actually had boots which were less than 20 years old (the old Asolo Supersofts in my folks' basement finally succumbed to the mice,) renting from The Mountaineer in Keene Valley. Benjamin scorns such modernity, sporting the Galibier Super Guides I got in my teens (yes they're about 30 years old.) Regardless we had a great time, and Hoffman in particular showed how there is always something new under the sun if you're willing to walk a ways.