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Winter recreation

Ice hockey sticks and gloves.
Drew Harsin rides a red plastic sled down the hill.

Enjoying a snowy day

Six months earlier, a zip-line strung over the pond between a tree and a pickup truck carried the Harsin boys to where they dropped into the water to cool off on hot days. But on this frosty day, Zach and Drew Harsin, having cleared the pond of snow the night before, slapped, slid, and smack-talked their way through some informal hockey, one of a long list of activities which the Harsin family have enjoyed through some 15 winters.

Any of the Harsins' outdoor pastimes could be the ticket to enjoying a snowy winter day.

  • Wildlife viewing and nature photography.

  • Hunting.

  • Trapping.

  • Hockey.

  • Hiking.

  • Sledding or tobogganing.

  • Ice fishing.

  • Horseback riding and other sporting events -- even paint ball wars!

When the boys tired of hockey, it was time to fire up the Polaris 400 Xplorer ATV, chain an old Ford pickup truck hood to the back of it for a sled, and haul friends around the pasture. When that lost its kick, they hoofed their way up what has become the Harsin's pride and joy: the sledding hill.

"It's the best sledding hill in the school," says Rachel Hughbanks, a friend of the Harsins.

At least as long as a football field, running over cleared ground beneath power lines, the sled run is a site to behold. As Darren says, hiking up that hill five or six times for the reward-ride down is probably all the workout most kids can take. Holidays often find the family enjoying the sledding hill.

The family dog, Chase, gets in on most of the activities, too, zigzagging and leaping wherever the boys are.

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