Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ready to run

I arrived in Buena Vista today for the start of my race. The opening dinner is done, my bag is packed, and its time to relax. The scenery on the drive here was beautiful and I am looking foward to more of the same over the next 3 days of running. My goal for this race is to have fun and enjoy the views.
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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Preparing for TRR3

  Well I leave Friday after work or Saturday morning to head to Buena Vista,CO where I will participate in my first 3 day running race.  This is the first year the 3 day solo option is being offered as the typical GORE-TEX TransRockies Run is a 6 day event that you run with a partner.  With being new to multi day running races and having just moved I was very excited about the 3 day solo option.  It means I can get a taste of the race and see if I really do want to do the full race next year with a partner.
  Since the run is sponsored by Gore, the company I work for a bunch of people from work will be headed to the race not to mention a bunch of other teams from Flag will be there so I should know a good number of people at the race.  I've been told that it's a ton of fun as most of your day you are hanging out.
  This week I get to work on what to bring: mandatory items that I mush carry with me each day on the run are a rain jacket, warm hat and gloves, and a survival blanket (just got this last night).  Then there are a bunch of optional items.  Other items that are going to be needed are clothes for all types of temperatures since I'll be camping in the mountains at night and running in who knows what kind of weather during the day.  To make it even more interesting the race provides you with a duffel bag and that's all that you can bring with you.  In there you have to fit whatever you will want for the race, including your sleeping bag and pad, any special foods, extra shoes, etc.  They transport the bag to the camping location each night, as each day is point to point, so whatever isn't in that bag you won't have.

Well with the race being less than a week away I'm not really nervous or worried, at least not yet.  The race is going to be what it's going to be.  While the running may be hard I'm excited for the mountain scenery of Colorado and spending most of my day just hanging out.  If you care to follow I think they post results for the race after each stage on the website, first stage is Sunday Aug 22.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Mountain Man Triathlon Olympic Distance

This past weekend turned out to be a pretty good one despite the rough start to it.  I had planned a long run for Friday morning but only managed to make it a mile before my stomach turned into a knot and forced me to stop and sit for awhile.  So what I hoped would be a great long run turned into a mile run and a mile stagger back home.

Saturday I helped Nathan with a mountain bike ride he organized by being at an aid station.  For my efforts I ended up cooking a lot of bacon for the riders who decided to continue the ride despite the pouring down rain.  Oh how I love the smell of bacon.


With the weather being so terrible on Saturday I was not sure I was going to finish the race on Sunday as I had decided if it was 50 and raining I might just do the swim and be done.  Luckily race morning when I got up there was no rain and the temperature was perfect.

My wave started at 6:40 and I got to the race site around 5 to rack my bike and get my transition area set up.  The organization of the race was not the greatest.  It seemed like nobody there knew any of the rules for racking bikes so people were taking up tons of space and tons of non racers were just getting in the way.  I found a spot in between two people who had 2 full towel widths between their bikes, so I just put my bike it in the middle and there was still plenty of room for everyone, so I thought at least.

The water was a nice 70ish degrees so I was able to use my wet suit.  The swim went pretty well for me, I started out pretty slow as lots of people seemed to be thrashing around at the beginning.  By the time I hit the first buoy I was in a rhythm and felt pretty good.  The first transition went pretty well with my foot only getting somewhat stuck in the wetsuit.

I headed out on the ride.  Luckily for me I know the ride course pretty well as it's one of the only safe roads to bike on up here.  The first 7-8 miles are relatively flat but the last few before the turn around you hit a series of hills that can just kill your speed.  Luckily for me I've had some practice so I made it up them ok but some of the people from lower elevation were definitely gasping for air at the tops of them.  After the turnaround it's a fast ride back to transition as with the downhill you don't have to work very hard at all.  I felt pretty good on the bike but there were still a few women who blew by me so I know I need to work on my biking a lot more.

 After the bike I started the run.  With the stomach issues I had on Friday morning I wasn't sure what to expect so I started out pretty slow for the first mile.  I was feeling pretty good so as the run went on, I started to increase my speed.  At around 1.5 miles the hill began, you gain 400 feet in a mile.  Luckily I had been doing lots of uphill trail running so it didn't feel that bad.  After the hill there was a bit of flat before the turnaround and at that point I felt pretty good so I decided I was just going to go all out for the second half of the run.  I flew down the hill and when I hit the flat road again with 1.5 miles to go I just kept the pace up and ended up picking off a lot of people.  Best part was of course out sprinting a guy at the end, he thought he had me but he was wrong.  As he pulled even to me I took off for the last 10-15 seconds and victory was mine, see photo below.

All in all I'm pretty happy with the race.  I didn't taper at all and had some hard hill and trail runs the week before and I still felt great.  I was also really excited by my run time as I feel like I'm finally starting to get my speed back which is exciting.  All in all a great day for a race, and I hope to be much faster next year.  After my next big race, Trans Rockies 3 day run which starts next weekend, I plan to focus mostly on biking for Sept and Oct as I feel my running is in a good place.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Tempe Towne Lake is Empty

Well in "local" news Tempe Town Lake is now empty as one of four rubber dams tore and caused the lake to drain.  You read right, a rubber dam.  There are hopes that a new dam structure will be in place and the lake refilled by early November so as to not impact the lakes biggest event, the Ironman.  I hope they have it fixed in time as it would be terrible to train the whole summer and then not have a lake to swim in.  I wonder if the race directors ever took into consideration that the lake just might not be there from one year to the next.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Heidi and a bit on the Schultz Fire

Well it's been awhile since I posted but I've been busy.
I made it back to Maryland for Eagleman and while the race didn't go very well the rest of the weekend was great.  I did learn from the race what I need to focus on for the summer, long bike rides and runs.  Since getting back I've been pretty motivated and have managed to get in some longer rides of 75, and 85 miles.  This weekend I'm headed to Santa Fe where I hope to get in another 80-90 mile ride as I am planning to do my first century ride with 5,709 feet of climbing in 2 weeks.

Then there was the Schultz Fire here in town which was just depressing as they closed a lot of the wilderness area and trails.  The last time I checked it had burned over 15,000 acres and now they are worried about flooding during the monsoons.  Some very beautiful trails, waterline, are probably gone for a long time maybe even forever which is just really sad.  Below is a video that shows a bit of what the fire looked like from parts around town.

Then after/during the fire I decided it was time to get a permanent trail running buddy.  There was a huge adoptiong day called Pets in the Pines held by Second Chance where they had tons of animals up for adoption. I got to the event about 20 mintues early as I wanted the best puppy there, by the time the event started I had found the perfect one, Heidi.  She's a shepherd mix and is now about 3 months old, they estimate she'll be a medium dog of about 40-60 pounds when she's done growing.  While she won't be running with me for awhile she already enjoys trail walks and riding on the side of the big dummy.  All in all she's a great puppy and I'm glad I finally decided to adopt one.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Race Report: Tribal Sprint Triathlon

Well the race didn’t go quite as I planned but I guess that was part of the reason I did it.

I didn’t get a lot of sleep the night before as I was car camping and between the biting bugs and me being convinced the creature outside (javalena was the guess) was going to jump into the open door to eat me I didn’t sleep much or well.

The alarm went off at 4:15, I left the camping area around 4:40 and was at the race site by 5:15.  The desert is pretty out now, lots of blooming saguaro's.

Upon arriving at the race site, I grabbed everything I thought I would need and headed to the transition area. About 10 minutes before they were going to close the transition I noticed a lot of people were wearing wetsuits despite the 75 deg water temp and 1K length.  So I ran back to my car and got mine. I made it back with enough time to throw my running shoes and visor into the T2 bag hand it off and make it to the boat ramp (bike was point to point). Of note the ground was not smooth pavement, there would be no running from the water to my bike.

The swim went ok but as I was putting on my cap and goggles I realized I forgot my ear plug. Not a big deal just means I’m stuck breathing on just my right side which means a slower swim since I usually breathe every 3rd. Other than that, the swim went pretty well, I was much calmer than I typically am and the wetsuit didn’t bother me as much as I thought it would. By the end I felt like I was finally getting into a good rhythm so I’m hoping that will stick with me for Eagleman and will enable me to feel comfortable going fast from the start. After the swim I walked to my bike, got out of my wetsuit pretty quickly and was off on the bike.

I was expecting a pretty flat course since it's near Phoenix and all but it turned out to be lots of rolling rolling hills not to mention sharp turns, cattle guards, and two turn arounds with one being around an orange cone after coming down a hill.  Not to mention that it was very windy out.  On a few hills I felt like I was working very hard just to go down them.

T2 was a bit chaotic as volunteers were helping to find and give out the T2 bags we handed over at the start line. The volunteers were doing a great job, I just happened to finish the bike at about the same time as 10-15 other people so it took me about a minute to get my bag.  I quickly put on my running shoes and set off on the run which ended up being a trail run the first 2 miles. I was doing well passing lots of people especially on the trail and then about 4 min before the end my shoe came untied so I stopped to retie it and then finished the race.

All in all not a great race but I now know what I need to remember for Eagleman. I’m still not really sure what my time at Eagleman will be but regardless it will be good to be back in MD for the weekend. And in trying to be positive the weather has only just gotten good for training out here and my big races are in the fall. Last year by Eagleman I had already been burnt out for about a month and this year I feel like I’m just getting into the swing of things. So if I am a bit slower at Eagleman but have motivation to train hard thru the summer then I think I’ll be okay with that ... so long as I do well in my races this fall.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Preparing for First Tri of the season

With Eagleman just around the corner I figured it would be wise if I did some type of triathlon leading up to it.  The last triathlon I did was last years Eagleman and I figure that going a whole year without being exposed to transitions and open water swimming would be a recipe for disaster.  Especially when I reflect on last years race where I was convinced I was going to drown before and during the race and then had some pretty slow transitions mostly because I took the time to reapply sunblock.

This Saturday I'll be headed to the Phoenix area to do the Tribal Sprint Triathlon (1000m swim, 23km bike, 5k run).  The plan is to camp out somewhere near the race Friday night as the race starts at 6:15 or for me at 6:17 as that's when the women's wave goes off.  The early morning is going to be rough but it means I'll be done before 8 so it shouldn't be unbearably hot out yet as the high of the day is going to be around 95.

I'm not really sure where I'm at right now in terms of my training I've been swimming more than last year but I am not as fast on my feet so those will probably balance out.  The biking I really have no idea about, I've been biking I'm just not sure if it's more or less than this time last year.  I'm hoping that the drop in elevation will make my efforts seem easier even if I don't go any faster.  My hope for the race is to feel comfortable with the open water swimming and then to try to push the bike and run as much as I can.  Hopefully, the results will give me some kind of an indication of how Eagleman will unfold.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Bike to work week and Snowbowl road

Well this week is bike to work week and people here do a great job of participating, it helps that there are lots of incentives.  I was on vacation Monday but biked in Tues, Wed, and Today.  I feel bad about not biking in Thursday but the pain in my shins led me to drive.  Wed was great as local businesses set up free breakfast stops (see map of locations) around town so you could bike to get your breakfast and then head off to work.  My favorite was Biff's Bagels where they had ample bagels, cream cheese, orange juice and coffee.

So far I only have some data but looks like on Monday 439 people biked 3889 miles to get to work and Tuesday was 447 with 3792 miles. I have to guess Wednesday may be a bit higher with the free breakfasts around town but maybe not.  Commuting other than requiring a bit more planning wasn't all that bad so I hope to continue to be able to ride in to work 2-3 times per week when the weather is good.

Snowbowl Road Ride
In keeping with the bike theme Wed was my first time climbing snowbowl road.  I didn't quite make it to the top, the climbing on the road starts at around 5.6 miles on the map below and goes for about 6.2 miles I'm told.  I made it to just after the 4 mile marker on the road (9.6 on the map ~8550ft) before turning around but that was more because of time constraints than my legs burning out.  Surprisingly the way down was a lot harder for me than the way up because I am terrified of turning on steep downhill windy roads.  I actually had to stop once on the way down to shake out my arms as my white nuckle death grip on the brakes caused my arms to tire out.

I wasn't really pushing it on the way up but next time I think I'll have to time myself and see how long it takes me to get to the top and then set a goal for the climb by the end of the summer.  Really I think the better goal is for me to be able to ride down in my drops by the end of the summer without having to stop and without breaking everytime I got over 22 on the downhill.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Telegraph 10K

This weekend I headed out to the four corners region.  The initial reason for being out that was was for Nathans 12 hour mountain bike race, 12 hours of Mesa Verde, but on top of that I found a trail 10K in Durango and I had been itching to do a race so that is what made the decision for me.
When I got out of the tent saturday morning lots of people were already wide awake getting ready for the bike race; lots of people wearing spandex, drinking coffee, checking tire pressure, and making last minute preparations for their day.  The bike race started at 7am in what is know as a Le Mans mass start, this was my first time watching such a start and it was very entertaining.  The riders had their bikes set up near the barn where they would record their laps but the actual start was probably 400m from the barn down a gravel road.  So the bikers line up 400m away from their bikes, the gun goes off, and they then have to run to their bikes.  Lets just say some people really went for it trying to actually sprint in mtn bike shoes, some took their time, and some people unfortunately fell.  At any rate watching helmet and spandex clad bikers try to run in mountain biking shoes was well worth getting up early.

After watching the start of the race I gathered my running things and headed to Durango, about 40 miles away.  It was still cold but by the start of the race at 9 it was pretty warm and sunny out.  It was a pretty small local race with a 1 mile, 5K and 10K option.  Looks like there was 34 people in the 5K and 52 in the 10K based on results.

The race started with running up a dirt/rocky road it leveled off and we made a turn to run around a meadow still going slightly uphill.  After the brief run thru the meadow the trail really started to go up and there was a series of switchbacks.  After 23-25 minutes or so I reached the highest point and we headed immediately back down.

The first downhill part was pretty steep and scary, for me at least.  To the left was a bit of a drop off and where there weren't rocks there were sections of sand that were hard to stop and turn on.  All in all it wasn't that bad I just had to pay close attention to where my feet were going to land.  After this steep section the downhill became more managable and eventually we ended up in the meadow.  I think this was probably my favorite part of the race as there were tiny rolling hills and some banked turns it didn't hurt that I was feeling pretty strong at this point too.  In this last meadow part I managed to pick off a couple of runners as I tried to pick up my pace for a strong finish.  I would have picked up the pace a bit sooner but my watch inidcated I had more distance left then I did, guess it lost signal at some point.  Luckily the end was the same as some of the 5K and when I saw the ribbons marking the 5K course I knew I should pick it up as there couldn't be much left.  Before I knew it I was headed back down the dirt road and I was done.  Results are up and I managed a time of 50:52, which is around an 8:08 pace which I'm pretty happy about considering how long the hill was in the beginning.
The rest of the day was pretty relaxing.  I headed back to the mountain bike race, went for a short road ride and followed that up with a nap.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Ironman in May Challenge

At work they are having the Ironman in May Challenge which is to promote exercise, as I believe May is national fitness month. So every building here in Flagstaff, 9 total I think, draws up a set of rules posts them and then has giant tracking sheets where you can track your progress and those of the other participants. It's actually pretty great to see so many people participating and trying to complete the challenge. Of course there are some incentives to participate and finish. 1) All participants can participate in a pizza party. 2) All finishers get a technical fabric t-shirt. 3) Prizes will be given out each week for those that log miles for that week. And of course the first finisher (male and female) gets some type of grand prize.

There few rules were, you have to go at least 3 miles on the bike, 2 miles of run/walking, and 400m of swimming at one time for it to count.

So I spent the better part of my weekend logging the 2.4 swimming, 112 biking and 26.2 running miles. It looked something like this.

12:01 - 3.5 mile run
6:30-7:45 Masters Swimming , 2700 meters
9:00-12:30ish: 50 mile ride
1:30-?: 9 mile run trail run
4:00-5:30: 13 mile on stationary bike and finished swimming
6:30 Giant Calzone for dinner followed by ice cream
7:30 - 2 miles walking around town while eating ice cream

6:30-7:  2.5 mile run started snowing so
7:30-9:30  instead of outside ride went back to sleep
10:30  coffee
11:00 - Gym where I did 49 miles on the bike and 9.2 miles on the treadmill

I felt pretty good about the effort when I left the gym.  By the end of the day Monday it was official I won for my building beating the first male by about 3 hours (he had about 16 miles of running left when I left the gym Sunday).  Now I just have to wait and see what I'll get even if it just ends up being bragging rights for a bit that's fine.  All in all it was a good way to see the sheer volume of what I'll need to do for a full ironman and it was a good way to try to get ready for Eagleman.  My legs were a bit tired this week but not all that bad.

In a few hours I'm off to Cortez & Durango to watch part of a 12 hour mtn bike race and get in a 10K trail race and some miles on my road bike.  The weather is looking great for being outside.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Slideshow from trip To Germany & Austria

Well it's taken me awhile to get these up but here are some pictures from my trip to Europe. It was a great vacation, I just wish I could have stayed longer. This is a slide show that we put together of a small portion of pictures we took on the trip. They provide a good idea of what we did on vacation.

We ended up in London for a night so we walked by a lot of the big picture items as you can see. Following that we headed off to Munich where we walked around the city a bit with Brett and Krista and got to see the Glockenspiel in action. As soon as I saw it, I remembered being there as a 4/5 year old. Then we walked around saw some of the old buildings and churches and ended up eating and drinking at a Hofbrauhaus where there was a polka, om pah band playing. It was a great first day in Germany.

The next morning started out with a short train ride to Innsbruck which is where we stayed for 2 nights. After finding a hotel we headed off to Stubai Glacier to get in a half day of skiing. You actually had to take a Gondola up to the base area which was a bit unusual.

The next two days we took the train from Innsbruck to St. Anton where on the first day we skied St.Anton and the second we went on the other side of the valley and skied Rendl. St.Anton was a bright sunny day where spring skiing conditions were to be found. At the end of the day we hit up apres ski at Mooserwirt where we drank plenty of beers and enjoyed the drunken bump run back to the bottom so we could catch the last train back to Innsbruck. At Rendl it was a bit colder but the terrain was a bit more to my liking. By the end of the day my legs were tired and I was ready to put the skis away for the rest of the vacation.

After skiing we took yet another train to Vienna with Brett and Krista. We only saw a small portion of the city but I really enjoyed just walking around, going to the various markets, and looking at and touring some of the old buildings and churches. And because the walking wasn't enough we paid a few euros to climb 343 steps to get to the top of St.Stephens Cathedral. From the top you could get great views of the city. After Vienna we headed back to Brett and Krista's where we enjoyed a BBQ and then packed up for the trip back to Flagstaff.

And just like that the trip was over and before I knew it I was in the middle of an 11 hour flight that seemed like it was never going to end.

Of note I did get my fill of Smarties and Kinder eggs. I also enjoyed many tasty beers, breads, and cheeses. The trip was great and I look forward to planning another trip out there in 5-10 years. Before that trip hopefully I'll have traveled to some other parts of the world and maybe I'll have time to relearn German.

Thanks to Brett and Krista for hosting us, I had a great time. Can't wait to see you when you get back to Maryland.

Friday, March 19, 2010


This time next week I'll be packed up and ready to get on a plane to Munich.  I'm very excited about the trip for many reasons.  I'll be seeing Brett and Krista, which is exciting because they moved to Germany before I moved to Flagstaff so it's been awhile.  Also I'll get to go skiing in Austria again, which is where I learned to ski at the age of 3/4, and I will be able to eat and buy as many Smarties as my stomach and bags can hold.  And when I say smarties I don't mean those crappy American sugar wafer things, but the amazing ones of my childhood.  A colorful sugar-coated chocolate confectionery. 

When we moved from Germany to Maryland, age 7, one of the things I remember missing most other than my friends were the candies (favorite being Smarties) and my favorite ice cream flavor.  The stuff over here, especially the chocolate, just didn't compare and m&ms don't have anything on Smarties.  I thought the candy was gone from my life forever until a trip to Montreal in college where I saw them at the convenience store and in ice cream.  They aren't available in many places in the US and certainly not in bulk so it's always exciting for me when I can buy them or when people bring them back to me after being in Europe.  The bag below was courtesy of Nick last summer.

Currently the plan is to take the first few days of the trip to hit up some skiing, most likely Innsbruck and St.Anton/Rendl areas.  I went to St.Anton for spring break in college one year and it was good skiing followed by some amazing apres ski  at Mooserwirt and then in town, so I'm excited to try to get back there again.

After some skiing looks like we're going to be more touristy and probably do a day in Munich and a few days in Vienna.

Other than that the snow is melting nicely up here in Flagstaff so hopefully the trails will be clear soon.  The past few weekends I've been enjoying a day of biking/running in Sedona and a day of skiing on the mountain, a very nice combo.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Sedona Half Marathon

Well it’s been awhile, since the last post I got caught in the storm we had out here and was having a lot of fun skiing and sledding. I’m glad I haven’t had to shovel snow in the last week though because it got old pretty quickly.  I'm sure you people back east know what I'm talking about as it sounds like you have been digging out for awhile now as well.
This past weekend I ran the Sedona Half Marathon. I was using it to get back into doing long runs and to hopefully make my body hurt so I would be motivated to train. Mission accomplished my legs are still pretty sore. I knew the course was hilly (1100 ft elevation gain) but it was much more so than I expected. I was thinking being under 2:00 would be a good start to my season and I ended up running a 1:56:55 with a few walking breaks so I was pretty happy.  If you are looking for a challenging and scenic course this is one to do. If you took your eyes off the hills on the road in front of you, you see tons of beautiful red rock formations.

Let me say leading into this my legs were far from fresh as the week before I had 1 speed and 1 tempo workout and also 2 lifting sessions, arms and legs. So while my legs felt dead on the uphills they felt equally dead on the downhills. I still don’t think I’m 100% used to the elevation but certainly I’m handling it much better than when I did the Flagstaff Half Marathon in October (~2:18) and think with a bit more hill and speed training it should no longer be an issue.

Other reasons I was pleased with the race was it started at 8 and I got up at 5:30 ate and my stomach handled the effort much better than usual.  ( I used to get up at least 4 hours before a race to eat and usually work myself into an anxious state)  I also managed to stay calm up to the start of the race. And during the race when I noticed my legs were dead and I might not do as well as hoped I didn’t just give up I tried to focus on cresting the hill and running the downhills and looking at the gorgeous scenery.  In the end it worked and I ended up meeting my goal.  So while I may not be as fast as I was this time last year, I'm happy with the results and I'm excited to get in some more workouts as I think I'll be able to have some fast races with a few more months of training.
Post race I went with a few other runners to the Coffee Pot where they have 101 omlette’s to choose from, very tast. A perfect end to a race morning.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Snow Day! makes for a 3 day weekend

Upon getting to work today, a bit late, I had a wonderful email in my inbox.  The entire way in to work I kept saying that they would have to cancel work tomorrow because there was just to much snow.  Well the email said just that, that plants would close due to weather after first shift today and that they will be closed tomorrow.  And that we can use our own judgement in deciding to go home early today.  That was sent out about an hour ago and my guess is that in the next hour there won't be many people left here.

Reason for being late this morning was that I was finally able to get up and function early enough, 5:30 to get up to snowbowl and skin up the mountain for a run down.  I'm not sure how long it normally takes people to get up but I was well behind everyone else and wsa getting passed by people I didn't know on the way up.  Oh well with more practice hopefully that will change.

The way down was fun but it's the deepest snow I've ever skied in and I have got a lot of learning to do.  The deepest I probably ever was in before was probably a foot this was probably 2+ feet and when my skis sank in I came to a dead halt.  Hopefully by the end of this weekend I'll have figured out how to float a bit better.

Well that's it for now as there's skiing and snow play to be had.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Blue Skies and Gorgeous Sunsets

This past weekend turned out to be pretty amazing.  Saturday was my first day of backcountry skiing since college and it was great to be able to do it again and with much better gear.  Then I followed is up Sunday with my first road ride of the year.

Saturday: We were fortunate enough to get a lift ride up to the top of snowbowl which saved us probably 1.5 -2 hours of skinning up the ski slopes.  From the top of the lift it was about an hour of hiking in ski boots with skis strapped to out backs to reach the top of what would be our first run for the day.

Digging a snow pit and me skiing.

After the first run down we skinned back up to the top again where we took a lunch break on a pile of rocks.  I was very excited to sit down and enjoy the warm temperatures as I ate my almond butter, cheese, goldfish sandwich.

 Run 2 : Not me skiing but you get the idea.  The picture to the right shows the turns we took on run 2.

The last run of the day was through an aspen glade like the one shown here.  Tree skiing is one of my favorite types of skiing and it was challenging for me Saturday because by this point my legs were about done and weren't responding as well as I would have liked. 

After this it was a long ski back to the car, I spent a lot of time on the ski out telling myself to just get to the bottom and that it couldn't possibly be that much further.  At the end of the day I think we covered around 10 miles and I was exhausted.

Sunday:  The ride in Sedona was pretty uneventful but I realized that it was not as flat as I was hoping it would be.  It turns out that the first half of my ride there was a net loss in elevation so as I was tired and wanting to get back to the car I had a fair amount of climbing to do.  I'm excited to explore more of the roads down there this spring while I wait for Flagstaff to thaw out.  The best part of that trip was the sunset on the way out of town.  In general the sunsets out here are pretty amazing as since Sunday I've seen 2 more gorgeous sunsets.


Friday, January 8, 2010

Crested Butte

I hope everyone had a happy new year.  Here are some pics and a brief recap of the trip.  I can't take credit for any of the pictures because while I brought a camera I didn't use it with my reasoning being that everyone else was taking pictures.

View from outside the front door onto the mountain at night.

All in all I had a great new years.  My only complaint being that once the sun went down it got really cold really fast and I just don't like being outside in 8 degrees. The first day of skiing was lots of groomers as they hadn't gotten any fresh snow.  I left the mountain about an hour before the lifts closed so I could do an easy run around town in the last bit of daylight.  Friday night a couple inches of snow fell and during Saturday a few more inches came down making the trails a bit softer which was nice because I was trying to learn how to Telemark.  Then Sunday was another long day in the car but very scenic as we went back through Ouray, Colorado and stopped to watch some Ice Climbers.

Some of the skiing crew from the first day.

Lift Picture

 Picture Down Main Street

I don't have anything too big planned for this weekend, I'm glad to be in town and not traveling as next weekend it looks like I'll be headed to Vegas for a bit.