Thursday, April 28, 2011

Rainbow Peak

Caitlyn had the morning off and both of us wanted to walk on dirt instead of in the snow so we headed south to Rainbow peak. Definitely one of my favorite early season hikes, the ridge can be as interesting as you want to make it, and the views are beautiful.



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Sunday, April 17, 2011

First and Last Day of Back Country Skiing

Ryan, Kyle and I left the parking lot of Arctic valley at about 5pm and toured to the top of Mt. Gordon Lyon. This was the first time I went back country skiing all year. Usually the ski season starts in October up at Hatcher Pass, but a low to no snow level up there prevented that, then I went to Hawaii and then it was climbing season. Pretty disappointed in myself on letting a whole season slip by....skiing can be so much fun!

Ryan at the Top


Looking Down


Looking Up


Self Portrait

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Monday, April 4, 2011

Grand Canyon: Bouche and Hermit Trail

Our grand plan was to try and do a rim to rim trip in a day at the Grand Canyon. Unfortunately there was still to much snow on the North Rim and so no way to do a car shuttle. I joked about a rim to rim to rim, but we all decided that was a bad idea.

Instead we decided to do a lollipop loop connecting the Bouche and Hermit trails. The guy at the park head quarters told us that we were nuts, both trails were rugged and it took some people all day just to get to the bottom. I have to admit he kinda made us all doubt our ambitions, but the facts were it was still only 22 miles with a 7,000+ gain. I just couldn't wrap my head around why those numbers were impossible...Lynn and Andrew agreed so we just decided to get an earlier start, and we decided on a turnaround time if we were moving to slow.


The weather was perfect, blue skies with wispy clouds, temps from 45 in the morning to maybe 75 at height of the heat. The walking was fun, similar to a maintained trail in Alaska.


The layers of rocks, amazing shapes and colors truly made every mile enjoyable.

The Colorado River


A worthy day out, and we even got back to the car before we needed headlamps, and still had time to eat out!

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Slide Show of Lynn and My Pics


Saturday, April 2, 2011

Restoring the Power: Sedona Vortex Link Up

Lynn, Andrew and I decided our power centers needed some replenishment so went and hiked to 3 of Sedona's vortexes. There is a lot of infomoration on the web, but the jist is this, "In Sedona vortexes are created, not by wind or water, but from spiraling spiritual energy. The vortexes of Sedona are named because they are believed to be spiritual locations where the energy is right to facilitate prayer, mediation and healing. Vortex sites are believed to be locations having energy flow that exists on multiple dimensions".


I'm not sure if I felt the spiritual energy, but I can say the vortexes that we visited were absolutely beautiful. My favorite was Catherdral rock, a slick rock trail that wound its way up to the base of these beautiful red rock formations.


Leave it to Lynn to have us crawling down some scrubby trail instead of staying on the main route!


An amazing day out, definitely a highlight of the trip. All the hikes were relatively short, which was good because I was feeling some soreness for the Hot Loop trail the day before!

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Slide Show of Lynn and My Pics

Friday, April 1, 2011

Hot Loop: Not Just a Name

I flew to Arizona and met my good friend Lynn and Andrew for some fun before they got married in Sedona on April 9th.

We all wanted to get out for a big day or two while we were in Arizona. We picked one close to where we were called Hot Loop Trail, it seemed like the perfect warm up day, 17 miles and only a 2,000 ft or so elevation gain. The funny thing was that the first sign we saw out of the parking lot stated that the trail wasn't a loop, and well just read it below. We debated for about 30 seconds then kept going.

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The hike took us up to the top of a scrubby mesa, which we followed till it reached a deep canyon, it was pretty but not spectacular. It was about 90 degrees, and we all agreed that Hot Loop was a very appropriate name. Going up the last big hill I somehow lost my GPS. I almost died of heatstroke running back down and up to try and find it, then Lynn and Andrew retraced our steps again, but no luck.


Even though my GPS was gone Lynn and Andrew still had their garmin watches, and at mile 14 we were all pretty sure that we had more than 3 miles to go and began to wonder how accurate the sign at the beginning really was.

I had brought 3 liters of water, which is always more than enough, but I was close to out and when we came to this slow moving stream that appeared out of the ground, I couldn't resist filling up. I can't believe how much energy the heat can suck out of me, or how thirsty I constantly am. I figured possible giardia in 2 weeks beat dehydration right now.


Twenty one miles later we reached the car in the dark. Our book proved to be about 4 miles off, but at least it was a loop unlike what the sign had claimed!

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Slide Show of Lynn and My Pics