Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Weekend in Tucson

Thursday it was puking snow on the Wasatch Front. I didn't get out to ski because of our trip the next day to visit my kid brother Jeff and his family in Tucson. The weather (for Tucson standards) was cold with highs only in the low 50s, but felt balmy compared to sub zero temps back home. After a fun but dissapointing  Jackson rando race weekend, it was a nice change of pace.

Boarding our small flight. We had to take the nursing baby with us. Travelling with a baby is toughness training.

This 4-year-old shreds it on his bike.
 Tucson sits at 2,600 feet above sea level and the Santa Catalina mountains at the edge of the city rise 5,000+ feet off of the valley floor--similar vertical relief to my home mountain range. There are TONS of excellent trails there in a unique (for me at least) setting. Some are super technical and not real runnable in sections, but fun nevertheless.
I was so captivated by the Saguaro cactus. Really tall and all over the place down there.

Kid brother and nephew out on a ride to the Circle K.

The Santa Catalinas are a pretty rugged little range. Awesome running there.

My vacation smile.

So much to see it was hard not to be a super tourist taking pictures.

GoPro stick mount. Take that Moellmer!

Up up up.

Yes I took a camera AND a GoPro. I'm a tourist.

One of my favorite sections of trail from the weekend. Buffed single track on the way to Kimball Peak up above the desert.

Cam is from San Diego. He kept saying "I can't believe I'm running on snow!" He lives in a different world.

Tucson, peace out. I'll have to come visit again.

We made a little video memory of the Kimball Peak run. Running with a GoPro is, admittedly, kind of dorky, but now we have a fun memory.

Phone Photo Dump

I take pictures with my phone occasionally and never do anything with them. At some point I might make a book out of the stuff I've written on here. There's a lot of memories associated with some of these pictures so I thought that I'd include them here.

Snowbasin in early summer.

Ben Eaton in his own Private Idaho at City of Rocks. Ben led the route so maybe this is someone else??

They grow up so quickly. Thank goodness for pictures.
Opening day with two of my favorite dudes.

The Ogden Raptors. It had been years since I'd been to a baseball game. A great time and I think our seats were $1.

Apres climb with the Txertudis in Fountain Green. Sorry Marian, you're kind of blurry.
T's first rodeo. Mayor Mike got some excellent seats right above the corrals where the bulls  come out.

Bountiful Peak in summer with the kids.

Kind of generic summit. It's fun to see it in the summer--I'm used to seeing everything  covered in snow up there.

Fruit fly trap with an important message for the fruit flies. These actually work pretty well.

So apparently East Canyon reservoir gets pretty low in the fall... Who knew? 

Mayor Mike in Blue at the Tour of Utah.

 My most memorable days (as a kid) experiencing the trauma at Nordic Valley were
because of my ski patroler dad. Patrolling well into his sixties. 

Tuesday night date night with  Sadie. We'd go to the climbing gym, then
out to Farr's Ice Cream in Ogden.
Neighbors getting ready for the fourth of July. It took over an hour to light them all off.

This guy joined us this year. Kinda fun to have a squishy baby around the house.

Please don't ever grow up okay?

Anytime we're going somewhere they have to jump in the snow first. Kids...

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

My upbringing in rando racing

I sat at a small desk in a small apartment in a big city in California. I was looking at blogs. I read blogs of randosteve adventuring in the Tetons. Of the Samurai adventuring in the Wasatch. Of KDay racing. It was 2008. Seeds were planted in my brain of what I wanted to do--A quarter-life crisis? Yes, I think it was. A couple of directional career changes and I was back in Utah. I knew I wanted to ski more. I bought a few pieces of touring gear. I had know idea what I was doing so I bought heavy stuffs. Hip flexor-straining stuff. 

The Xterra winter skimo race in March 2009 was $35 and close to home so I thought I'd sign up and go check it out. Lycra-clad racers, tiny skis, green boots and big cardio were aplenty at the start line. Despite my heavy gear I soldiered on and was convinced that this was the hardest physical activity I had ever participated in. Ironman notwithstanding.  I did the shorter 8k course and got lapped by some of the 12k racers like the Samurai and others. I got a medal for being the second female finisher in the heavy metal category. How very appropriate. Despite feeling absolutely crushed, I was hooked. This new secret world of rando racing was discovered that day. I've looked back at that first race experience and laughed alot at what a punter* I was and some of the stuff I did during the race. Ah the memories.

In 2010 I raced heavy metal at Grand Targhee and the Powderkeg. Painfully slow, but wanting to get faster & lighter.

In 2011 I raced Jackson Hole & Targhee back to back (brutal), and the Powderkeg with bronchitis--I don't recommend ever doing that.

In 2012, I raced the Jackson weekend again (faster this time), all of the Wasatch citizen series races and the powderkeg this time with a cold or maybe even bronchitis again. I've had terrible luck with the powderkeg. 3 races, One with a limp, 2 while sick. That 2012 powderkeg was literally one of the worst days of my life. I wanted to DNF so badly but kept going for some reason. I was a broken man at the finish.

So here I am at the beginning of 2013. I'm optimistic that this could be a good year for me. I'm a proud owner of race skis, race boots, a skin suit--a bona fide race setup for the first time ever. I'm hoping to be fitter and faster in 2013. At least compared to the me in prior years. So goodbye past and hello future! Happy new year!

(What is with the hyperlinks?? They magically appear and I can't figure out how to get rid of them. Help?)

*From Urban Dictionary's definition of punter:

"(In the world of professional skiing, ski racing, selected freestyle skiers, upper-level alpine skiing, those skiers 'in the know')
A lower-class skier. A skier that cannot ski a blue or black ski run. A certain breed of skier frowned upon by other skiers that know what they are doing. Often wears the 'punter uniform' consisting of a jacket from the 60's, jeans tucked into ski boots, a baseball cap and sunglasses or a neckwarmer worn as a hat. If this describes you, go away.
Also, all snowboarders."
Finishing my first race--the now dead winter xterra.

Sadie in first touring boots. My heels may still have the scars from the blisters.

Little shredder.