Here are a few pics of the sky during this mornings dog walk
The end of summer is here. I’m packing up the house and getting it ready for winter. The weather has been awesome this week so the dogs and I have been enjoying the fall colors from the trails. I’m meeting my friend Jason on Thursday for a final climb of Yale. The next morning, the dogs and I are off to Austin.
I made a dinner so pretty last night, I had to take a picture of it. Baked potato smothered in chili with sour cream, tomatoes, and avocado on top.
Winter came this week but it was much less than was forecasted. Snow didn’t stick in town, but the mountains were covered.
I was prepared with inside activities since I’d already cut all the plants down, taken in all the patio furniture, and removed the outside screens. My chore was to make a giant amount of campfire salmon to freeze. I hit a new mark with 16 foil wrappers. Even in the new oven, it took 3 loads to cook it all.
The next day, I was craving chili. I already took the giant pot back to Austin so I used the Yeti to mix all the ingredients. I used every pot I had and the crock pot to cook it and ended up with 8 gallons of chili to freeze.
Makes me want to watch Game of Thrones again. The days are getting shorter and lazier. Darby has taken full advantage of slowing of pace.
The weather is supposed to take a turn towards winter on Thursday – snow and a low of 9 degrees… I bought a lot of food to cook and a bottle to drink during the cold days. Last week, I hit the mountains pretty hard to get ready for Cactus Rose at the end of the month, so I took it easy today with a hike up to the East ridge on Mt Yale. I took a couple pictures of the trees changing color in the canyon
The dogs and I plan on heading back at the end of next week. All of us will be back for the Christmas open during Thanksgiving. I attached the video I made of Preston and my trip to Kilimanjaro that I forgot to post earlier.
The last 6 weeks have been busy and fun. Tracy has been here a lot to enjoy all the great things BV does in the fall. I also made a trip to Austin to pick up Preston and take him to CalPoly. I returned to Austin for a week and Tracy drove back up to BV with me. The picture below is the start of the TransRockies run.
We’ve spent a lot of time at the local distillery, Deerhammer. The dogs enjoy it since the food truck next to it serves sweet potato fried (their 2nd favorite food behind salmon)
I’ve been slowly replacing the appliances in the house. The latest addition is a new stove. The house is huge, but the space for the appliances are tiny. This was the largest stove I could find for the space. The 2nd picture is how close I cut it to make sure you could pull out the drawer.
The dogs get walk every morning and the view never gets old. This was the beginning of September and later, there will be some late September pictures. The weather patterns in the fall bring more clouds early so the sun rising makes some incredible colors.
September weather was awesome. We spent a lot of time on the deck and Izzy enjoys sunning.
The dogs and I went back to Austin since I was going to drive Preston to college. While in Austin I was able to get a run in, do some maintenance around the house, and have a poker game. Preston and I left on a Tuesday and we took 4 days to get to SLO (CalPoly). We spent the first night in Roswell since I was excited to visit the UFO museum. The second night was in Flagstaff and we were able to have dinner with Kathy and John Eastwood (my undergrad adviser). The third night we went to one of the few casinos in California that allows 18 year old’s to play poker. Preston went straight to the tables and I didn’t see him until 5am the next morning. He had his ups and downs but came back 50% up. The last night, we stayed at one of the few hotels with vacancy in SLO. I dropped him off to his dorm first thing the next morning and left right after unpacking the truck. His dorm is pictured below – nothing special with 3 people in a room.
Tracy, the dogs, and I drove back to BV the following Sunday. It was an uneventful trip except the Eagles lost to the Lions (yeh for me). We had a wonderful time together in BV. Many trips to Deerhammer, Asian Bistro, and the Surf Hotel. We also volunteered at the 14ners festival, selling drink tickets. The pictures below are from a hike we did up Mt. Yale from the standard route at Denny Creek. Tracy did awesome and the day was wonderful.
Last week, the colors were awesome awesome during our morning dog walk.
CW has been in BV on and off for a month. The adventure I plotted for him this year was for him to climb 7 of the 14ners in the Sawatch Range. He would camp at the base of one, climb the following day, and then trek to the base of the next one. I met him for 4 of the climbs. He did great.
He camped in Missouri Gulch and we climbs Belford and Oxford back to back and then I ran down the backside and climbed Missouri also.,
When I was meeting him in Great Horn Basin, I ran into a pair of moose. If you zoom in you can see both of them in the meadow below.
His final peak was Mt. Yale. We went up the East Ridge which involves a lot of route finding and scrambling. He was exhausted when we finally reached the summit.
Since getting back from Africa, I’ve been hitting the trails pretty hard to get ready for High Lonesome this Friday. I’m feeling very good so I’m hoping to beat my time from last year. My expected splits are below with my times from last year.
I’ve been all over the course to check on the conditions. The snow is melting quickly. On Saturday, I went back with my neighbor’s son in law and we turned right and climbed Mt. Antero. The weather was great and we ran down.
The next day I climbed Law’s pass which is also on the course. There is still a giant cornice but it’s easy to get around.
I also returned to the road by St Elmo to see if the avalanche had been cleared. It had. I continued on to the Colorado Trail and ran the crest to Hancock and then back to St Elmo. The only challenging spot was the last pitch to the old railroad bed. The hill was completely covered with snow, but it was easy enough to kick steps down. It was so large, I doubt it will be gone by race day.
I took a day off and made a huge batch of Campfire Salmon.
Our gardening has turned out well. Everything is in bloom.
On Saturday, my friend CW came to visit and we sipped whiskey on my neighbor, Mark’s porch and watched the sunset.
On Sunday, I ran the Mt Harvard and Mt Columbia loop while CW hiked to Bear Lake. It was much more challenging this time since there were still huge snowfields that I had to go around. The route I took ended up 3 miles longer and 1000ft more elevation than the traditional route. The view from Harvard is the first picture, view of Columbia and the traverse is the second.
It’s been a great couple of weeks. Preston has been here and Tracy visited for a few days. She will be here for almost a month next week while Preston and I are gone to Africa. Preston and I spent last week doing various short hikes around the area. On the Colorado trail we came across this guy which acted like a rattle snake but turned out to be a large Gopher snake.
We also hiked from St Elmo up towards Tin Cup pass. Had heard that an avalanche had taken out the road and yes it had…. Seems like 500 yards of Wildcat ridge came down into the creek and carried 200 ft up the north ridge. There is still ~8′ of snow under the debris and once it melts there will be no way of picking through the mess. We climbed 100 vertical feet up the north ridge to see if we could get around it. With a little work this could be a temporary trail. This road is part of my race at the end of July so I hope it’s cleared by then. If you look closely at some of the pictures below, you can see Preston picking through the debris field.
Last weekend, Preston and I worked on a new trail across the river from the house. There were close to 100 people out and we added almost a mile of single track trail. It was warm both days and we were extremely dirty.
The weather has been beautiful and the snow if finally melting. It has caused the River to rise to twice the volume of last years high level. It’s brought out a lot of kayakers who want to surf the steps in the river.
One Monday, we went out to Avalanche trailhead with the dogs. The snow is melting fast, but we still had to turn back about 2.5 miles in. On Tuesday, we hiked 4.5 miles up Little Brown’s Creek trail. We were able to make it past 11k feet for the first time. It’s a pretty hike and there are seldom any people on it.
Darby and Izzy enjoy all the activity. They are exhausted by the end of the day.
Tomorrow, I have the Leadville Trail Marathon. Because of the snow, the course has been rerouted to lower elevations but the race will still be challenging. I’m hoping for sub 6 hours.
What a crazy week. It all started Saturday with the Collegiate Peaks 50 Trail Run. I’d run most of the course and while it’s not technical, there is a fair bit of climbing and a 12 hour cut-off. The weather was fantastic for the starting 72 runners. I finished the first half in 5:15 which put a lot of pressure on the 2nd half. I fell behind the aid station cut offs mid way through the 2nd loop but after sprinting the last 6 miles, I finished DFL in 24th place, 2 minutes and 32 seconds before cut-off.
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I added some pictures from the race that Tracy had on her phone.
The forecast called for a Winter Storm Warning on Wednesday so I decided to make vegan lasagna. I made far too much so I gave some away and froze the rest.
Our neighbors, who are also from Austin, were in town so Wednesday night we decided to drink whiskey at DeerHammer. The snow started while we were walking there.
This is what it looked like walking home 2 hours later. The snow was really wet and heavy and the forecast called for it to snow all night.
The next morning, it looked like in addition to the snow, high winds had ripped through. The trees were sagging with a lot of broken limbs and some even completely down. There wasn’t any wind, just really wet heavy snow. About 8-10 inches came down on May 9th.
The dogs didn’t know what to think. They seems to love running in the snow.
These trees are the primary shade for the dog park. They were sagging so much under the weight of the snow that I thought they were going to come down completely. Luckily, they didn’t fall over, but the picture below this one shows how many limbs have been snapped.
On Friday the snow finally stopped and Mt. Princeton poked out from behind the clouds.