Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Year in Review Part 2: Running With Friends

Though most of my runs are solo, those times where I am able to share the trails (or bike paths) with my good friends stand out as some of my most memorable outings of the year.  Always great to talk training, racing, mountain goals, mountains, more mountains, family, shoes, mountains and a zillion other topics.  Thanks for all the great times!

Homie on Green (Feb. 4th 2012), one of the rare occasions we have worn snowshoes, most likely just to pack the trail so we have a better, more runnable trench for the following days.

Dave Mackey (David Riddle in back visiting town for a few days and joining us for a tour of Green)


Dave, Homie and Kendrick after Homie's 10th lap on Green in one day.  Almost certain to see a Mt. Lion with Kendrick along.

Me blinding the camera with my zillion lumen headlamp.

Homie on Lincoln

Not running or hiking, but this is the only shot I could find of Rob or Aron (Boulder Creek Fest)

Joe, Tony and Homie scoping out Nolan's routes on our way up Missouri Mt. in early June

GZ and Nick on the summit of Longs Peak

GZ negotiating the narrows on Longs (lookin good GZ!)

Homie, Nick and George at the Keyhole

Closing out the year on Green with Homie, GZ and Brandon

Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 Year in Review Part 1, Family Time On The Trail

OK, I'll jump on the annual review bandwagon.  2012 went by in a blur and I have to rely on dated photos, my blog and garmin data to remind myself of the highlights, but as I do so, the floodgates open and I am reminded of all the great times I have had in the past 12 months.  At first, I figured I could wrap it up into a single, tidy post, but once I got going, I figured I should spread it out a bit over several posts as to not feel too cluttered.

Since this is my outdoor adventure blog, I'll try to stick to that theme, but more and more the lines are blurring between family and outdoor fun (in a very good way).

Time on the trail with my family.   We had some fun small adventures this year on the local peaks and in the Indian Peaks.  These opportunities were stymied a bit (OK, a LOT) by spending just about the entire summer buying, renovating and moving into our home in Louisville, but we really hope to make up for that next year now that we are settled (mostly). 

Though I often times find my thoughts wandering to higher mountains, faster runs, longer outings, races etc.....  I can't express enough how fortunate I feel to be able to share time in the outdoors with my family and take great joy in sharing this love with my twin daughters.  They absolutely love being outside and introducing them to such an awe inspiring natural World is an amazing honor like no other. 

I can't wait until they are old enough to join me in doing bigger and better things under their own power, yet simultaneously realize that they will grow up way too fast.  I came across a parenting blog a while back titled "The Longest Shortest Time", so true.

"Your biggest challenge isn't someone else. Its the ache in your lungs and the burning in your legs, and the voice inside you that yells 'CAN'T', but you don't listen. You just push harder. And then you hear the voice whisper, 'can'. And you discover that the person you thought you were is no match for the one you really are." ~unknown~

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Monday, 12/24/12 Green Mountain Hike with Amelie

5.3 miles/2,321 vert./1:39 (57 up)

Isabelle was sick and mom had some shopping to do, so Amelie, Sierra and I headed out for a hike up Green Mountain on Christmas Eve day morning.

Because we had the dog, we headed up Gregory/Ranger and I wogged a few of the flatter sections early on, but 95% of the outing was spent hiking, both up and down.  Could have gone quicker, but I was trying to keep things comfortable and enjoyable for Amelie and we sang Christmas songs much of the way, pointed out all of the Christmas trees, identified bird songs and fetched snacks and mittens.

Bumped into Chris Gerber in Gregory Canyon and chatted with him for a bit, saw a few other runners and hikers, but was overall a very quiet day on the mountain.  A bit chilly at the start, but soon I was feeling quite overdressed, though froze when we spent 10 or so minutes on the summit.  I was quite impressed that Amelie accurately pointed out Mt. Audubon from the summit (partially obscured by clouds).  She recognized it from our walks here in Louisville where both she and Isabelle can identify Bear, Green, Audubon and Longs.  Not bad for 2 year olds.

Had to be official and tag the true summit

Taking a little time to enjoy the summit

She loved exploring the summit and did not want to leave

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Wednesday, 12/19/12 Mt. Everest Gigapixel Photo

This is waaay too awesome to not share.  Click on the picture and then zoom into basecamp, the summits, etc...  The clarity and zoom power is just stunning.

Hopefully this technology trickles down to pocket size by the time I need a new camera...

Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday, 12/17/12 Update and RMNP Pics

Not much new here to report. I have been getting out on occasion, just a few casual laps on Green per week, maybe a baby jogger run or two, but have generally been taking things very easy as of late. My left Achilles was a bit twingy after Thanksgiving (probably from stupidly running part of a turkey trot a bit too fast with the baby jogger). On a pain scale of 0-10, it was a very occasional 2, but have been through similar things enough times, I figured I would take that as a sign to get in a little downtime.

After about a week mostly off and wearing a night splint, I felt as though I had it beat and was eager to get back at it, then I got sick and have felt mostly lousy the last 2 weeks. Being sick zapped my energy and motivation a bit, mostly from the interruption of my sleep. This is all fine though, as things have been extremely busy at home and work, so even though it is quite difficult for me to refrain from getting on the trails, it has been (and continues to be) a welcome change of pace which I will just give in to for the remainder of the year (or until I feel otherwise). I am chomping at the bit to get back at it, but am also being patient at the same time.

Normally, by this time of year, I know exactly where I am at in terms of vertical, miles, # or peaks climbed etc… and tend to chase some stupid arbitrary numbers that not even I really care about any more.  This year however, I have resolved to not even tally it up until the last day of the year, or the first of next.

Over the weekend, Allison and I had a rare night away from the kids (our second time away together in nearly 3 years), so we headed up to Grand Lake for some hiking (not quite enough snow yet for snowshoeing) and a lot of eating. I had secretly hoped to get in a few peaks and went prepared for anything, but the weather was not great and we were not particularly goal driven, so we took things pretty easy and just enjoyed our time away with no real plan. It was cool driving into RMNP this time of year, as the snowpacked, but plowed road was open for 10 miles or so to the bottom of Trail Ridge Road. It was so quiet and peaceful, as we were the only humans out there on the unbroken trail toward Timber Lake.

The second day, we headed up toward Lone Pine Lake from the East Inlet trailhead. We had only planned on 2 or 3 hours, but ended up being out for a bit longer. We almost made it to Lone Pine Lake, but we had long surpassed our turnaround deadline and reluctantly had to call it a day. Referring to Google Earth when I returned home revealed that we were only a few hundred yards from the lake. A bit disappointing to have come so close, but still ended up being a very nice 10+ mile hike in the snow.

The snowpack in the mountains is quite thin, but seems like it might be starting up, at least a little bit.

Mountain Lion tracks?  I can't imagine what other large cat might be out there roaming.

Never Summer Range

Impressive land slide (slump)

More Mountain Lion tracks after the moose tracks ended.

Snowy after dinner walk around Grand Lake

East Inlet hike toward Lone Pine Lake

Starting to look like Winter

Adams Falls