Saturday, March 23, 2013

Farmington Triathlon

Today I did an inadvertent triathlon. I was planning a duathlon (bike & ski), a flat tire forced me to run in ski boots for several miles. I should mention that I was pushing a bike the whole time... It must have been quite the sight to see. Luckily (A miracle really) someone was driving down the closed road and picked me up ending my run for the day. 
Farmington sleeping.

The cloudy mist may or may not be my morning breath.  Leg 1 bike.
If I were Ansel Adams you might see how incredible the lighting was. I never tire of sunrises.

First light on Francis Peak.
I ski this area too much. I really need to branch out a little more... Anyone want to ski Rainier this spring? Leg 2 ski.

My transport. Back tire is flat, so this is the beginning of the run.  Kind of was a buzz kill.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Chasing Skinny Rears In Utah County

I tagged along with the Dorais boys and Tom on a trip to Cascade Mountain in Provo.  This was my first time skiing in Utah County and I was amazed at the mountains down there. The Utah County mountains  are a pretty narrow section of the Wasatch range, just like Davis County, only the mountains there are 2,000 feet taller.  I am very lucky to live in such a beautiful place. Now if we can only do something about the air in the valley...

Jan 2005 - White Cascade
The Grr Couloir. (From
Daniel Coyle's book Lance Armstrong's War talks about the cyclists checking each other out at the start of the season to see what kind of form they were in. They would scope each other's rears and bellies to see who they should worry about during the upcoming races. Why do I mention that? Well, I spent a significant part of today behind 3 very fast skiers with small rears. At the citizen races, etc. it is so low key that I forget how fast these dudes are. They had me pretty close to pinned all day! I did notice Tom sweating though so I know it wasn't too easy for them.

Hard to see in this photo, but they do in fact all have skinny little rears. And are fast.
I was a mess today though. Those guys way never want me to ski with them again after today. Junkshow? Pretty much. Give me another chance though okay fellas?

Among other things, these are a few of my missteps:

  • Left my pack/beacon at home. I got hooked up with a steezy analog beacon (Thanks Andy)
  • Showed up for carpool at the wrong REI. Had to drive to Provo instead.
  • No whippets/axe. Andy said that my experience may be "more memorable" because I didn't have whippets while Jason, Andy, and Tom all had them. If you mean a sketchy down climb over an avalanche slicked gully where 5 kicks in bullet hard snow gives you a 1" divot to stand on in a 45 degree section is is memorable, I would definitely agree. That was memorable. I hope to never have those memories again. 
  • No crampons. I would have loved using a pair at the choke of the South Summit Couloir today...
  • Helmet. I thought we were going powder skiing?? Since my mom reads my blog I won't elaborate on why I wished I had one today.
  • The mountain stole my drink. I had half a gatorade and was needing some calories when I went to grab it out the velcro box from my pack--gone. It must have slipped out. Prolly at the top of the Grr Couloir if anyone wants to drink the rest. I don't have herpes.
  • Camera. I didn't bring a camera and regretted it. It was a stunningly beautiful day with blue skies, buddies, and skiing in a new area for the first time. 
  • My big finger! It's hard to see the phone pics in the bright sun so I didn't get a chance to see my  stupid finger until I got home.
This would be a really cool picture if not for MY BIG FINGER! Andy, Tom, Jason at the runout of the Grr.

Frozen balls. Giant sized dippin' dots for most of the 2,500 foot Grr Couloir. Big finger upper right.
Me dodging snow/ice/rock as Tom ascends. (Photo: Jason Dorais)

Me topping out... (Photo: Jason Dorais) Sky looks awesome.
Nice day to be out.

A frozen Utah Lake and "The County."

The bushwack to the base of the Grr was excellent. 
Survival skiing defined (Photo: Jason Dorais)

Is that tiny white mountain in the distance Cascade? Cameo: Big Finger.

A view of the Oquirrh  range from a pre-work ski on 2/25.