Lake Isabelle

Lake Isabelle

Thursday, January 1, 2009

2008, The Good, Bad and the Ugly

2008 Highs, Lows and everything in between, some random musings.....

2008 was yet again another great year in the mountains, hiking, running, climbing, camping and enjoying the great outdoors with Allison, Sierra and many great friends.

I have had too many good times this year to list here, but have shared MANY great moments on mountain trails and summits with Allison, Sierra, Dave and Emily Hale, Scooby, Shep and Kiefer (the dog and the 14erworld member), Kevin Lund, John Prater, Hoot, Jeff Kunkle, my parents, my in-laws, George Zack, Dave Mackey, Ken Nolan, Jean A, Steve Hoffmeyer, Gerry and Jennifer Roach, Aron Ralston, Jason Halladay, Dwight Sunwall, Pete K, Rick Canter and many other friends and acquaintances from 14erworld and beyond.

I was also able to guide Allison to the summits of some of her last remaining 14ers this summer. I had a great time in the process, as I feel a great sense of satisfaction about helping her complete the list and achieve her goals. I enjoy this as much or more than I did finishing the list for myself the first time around. We also got in some new centennial peaks, new 13ers, 12ers, LCW peaks etc….

I am also very thankful to have finally healed the patellar tendonitis that had plagued me for most of 2007, which was majorly cutting into my hiking and running. I went under the care of Dr. Jeremy Rodgers here in Louisville(http://www.coloradosportschiro.com/custom_content/103019_jeremy_rodgers_dc_atc.html) in January where he prescribed a regime of strengthening exercises, administered ultrasound treatment, provided a knee brace, suggested minimal hill climbing/descending and gait modification. After two months of diligence and impatience, I got to the point where my aching knee was no longer a detriment to my outdoor enjoyment.
This soon led me back to my daily mountain runs and weekend mountain climbing trips where I felt great to be getting out with no reservations.

The lowest point of the year was certainly the untimely and tragic loss of Dave and Emily’s dog Scooby. Scooby was more than your average dog, he was extremely intelligent, friendly, athletic and was one of our best hiking partners. Hikes without Scooby still feels incomplete, as his absence is still profoundly felt and he will be greatly missed by all.

My running this year improved as well. It helped tremendously both mentally and physically to finally get my knee healed. I also feel as though I have become more efficient with my stride/cadence and also have improved my pacing on my hard runs. I also improved a good bit on my descending which was a bit of a surprise, as it was somewhat unintentional.

I raced several times this year and was happy with my results and fitness. Of course my running goal of the year was the Pikes Peak Ascent, where I had hoped to PR and really felt ready to do so, but Mother Nature had other plans, delivering the worst weather in the history of the race and I unfortunately did not cope with the adverse conditions as well as I had expected or hoped. I have slowly accepted this though and have learned that it is ridiculous to judge an entire season on ~3 hours in mid August. Regardless of Pikes, I did set some personal bests this year that had me feeling quite elated. Some of my proudest running moments from 2008…..

Grays Peak from Stevens Gulch TH in 54:38
Sanitas PR 16:23
Mt. Yale from Denny Creek TH 1:19:24
Green Mountain PR in 33:19 (via Amphi/Saddle/Greenman trails).
Green Mountain from Chautauqua in 36:46 (60:24 RT)
Bear Peak RT PR 1:03:13
Superflag on the road 37:59
Mt. Evans Road Race 2:09:18 (13th overall, 2nd age division).
Finishing "first" in the Basic Boulder Mountain Marathon (4 peaks, 22 miles/7,000 vert. in 3:34)

I look forward to many more great adventures in 2009, new peaks, fast runs, a few races, but most importantly, enjoying the company of Allison, Sierra and my many great friends that make these outdoor adventures all the more enjoyable. Happy New Year!

2008 Stats:

716,446 Vertical Feet
1,936.9 Miles
268 Days

73 Green Mountain
71 Sanitas
39 Bear Peak
38 South Boulder Peak
33 14ers
30 13ers
19 12ers
12 11ers
25 Misc Peaks under 10,000 feet

340 Total Peaks

December 2004 thru December 2008 total stats: (Since I first started keeping detailed records)

2,326,975 Vertical Feet
6,120 Miles