Our valley is ringed by mountains. Interstate 84, the main route in and out, comes in from the south, snaking through steep and rugged Ladd Canyon on its way to the valley floor.
Ladd can be treacherous any time of year, but especially so in winter. When major storms move in, swirling blizzards cut visibility to the front bumper and trucks jackknife on the icy, steep grade. It's common for the freeway to be closed to all traffic until the storm passes.
When it does pass, the canyon's forested hillsides stand out in snow-cloaked relief, remote and spectacular.