Other Outdoor Adventures

Outside All Day

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I started the day with a short little 7.17 mile run. The morning was cool but sunny. I didn't feel like running up the normal hill so I started with some running through my neighborhood and then I hit a shorter, steeper hill. After that I made my way on a pretty typical route. I was running slower than usual. My back has been hurting and I didn't want to push it.

It was a quiet morning and I did not see many other runners. I tried a new outfit which was completely mismatched. My tights are actually capri length but you can't tell due to the tall socks. The socks are thinner than my normal ones which actually felt good so I might be in the market for some new socks. I really liked the tights. I'm not sure how much they will ride uo when I am not wearing long socks but they were really comfortable. I also ran with a hat and gloves. I had my thumbs out of the gloves and my sleeves pulled up to my elbows. It doesn't long for me to get warm.

Overall even though my pace was slow I am happy with the run. My goal lately has been to run a decent amount of miles.

When I got home I saw my buddy's hat and gloves….he ran outside despite the chilly temperature. Too bad we didn't cross paths!

After a little bit of recovery time we headed out to do some yard work. I spent a couple of hours jumping up and down on an edger. After making a lot of progress but becoming totally bored we decided to do something fun.

There is a trail that I have been wanting to try. We have been on a more southern section of it but we wanted to try a spot closer to our house. We threw the bikes on the Jeep and drove to a park that is a few miles from our house. From there it was a very short ride to the trail. The first section of the trail was single track which I was not expecting. I described it as “50,000 times better than I was expecting!” I was so excited. It was very technical. It was narrow and filled with roots and rocks which made for a very bouncy ride. It was also muddy. Further out the trail got wider and had gravel. There were even some short paved sections.

The conditions varied throughout the trail and there were quite a few stream crossings. Some were ride-able while others required a carry. There were also many large trees across the trail requiring the bikes to be carried. I bet I jumped off my bike at least 20 times!

We rode out about 5 miles and then ended up at a road. Because we were already tired from running and yard work we decided to head back make it an almost 10 mile ride. The way back seemed like it was all uphill and we were both pretty tired.

I'm really glad we tried this trail out. We will definitely be headed back there to explore more. It's a good mix of challenging and easy, improved and unimproved, and it made for an amazing ride. I'm looking forward to going even further the next time we go there.

18 Holes

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In the late afternoon we headed out for a round of golf. There was a county course I had been wanting to try. We lucked out and got to play just the two of us….didn't get matched up with anyone else. That's nice because I'm not that good and I didn't have to worry about anyone else watching.

On hole 6 we met this guy…

He lives in a bunker right in front of the green. I believe it was a Par 3 so we got to the green pretty quickly. I was worried that he would take my ball like the last fox we met on a golf course. He didn't….but he did watch us putt. He wasn't scared of us at all.

Overall it was a great afternoon. The back 9 was much slower than the front 9 and we waited to tee off at almost all the holes but it was fun anyway. My buddy played really well and I played not so well but pretty much the same as I always do.

We both had fun and it was nice to spend the afternoon together.

Oh and did I mention that we walked the course….after running in the morning. Yeah, no wimpy golf carts for us. Ok, so we used our pull carts….but when I say we walked I mean we did some speed walking….because that's the only way we know how to walk.

Traditional 4th of July Tri

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Yesterday started with the Let Freedom Run 5k. I hadn't run in at least 3 weeks due to being crazy busy before our trip and then our two week trip. I did work out quite a bit during the trip so I knew I would be ok. This was the very first race that I have run by myself. My buddy can't handle my snails pace and is going to stop running with me. How sad….but I can't let it stop me. He didn't run the race at all….just watched from the sidewalk.

The start was fast. I started near the front and really took off. There was a long downhill in the beginning and I let the hill carry me. After the first mile I found the uphill sections and started to slow down. It was very hot and I was feeling out of shape. But in the end I made it to the finish line and that's all I cared about.

After the race we headed home to load up the peddles and the paddles. We made our way over to Roosevelt Island where we claimed a great parking space for the day. We took the bikes out and peddled into DC. We rode around town and ended up at the Potbelly near Gallery Place for lunch. After a short break and refill of water we hit the streets again.

Afternoon naps in the car were required to make it through the extremely hot day. I think we are still suffering some jetlag too.

For dinner we took the bikes across the bridge into Rosslyn. We found Red, Hot, & Blue which seemed pretty American to us so we loaded up on BBQ. It was good and gave us a nice break in the air conditioning. We had a nice downhill ride back to the car where we loaded up the bikes and got out the kayaks.

We put the kayaks in the water and slowly paddled around the island to the ultimate kayak parking spot with the Lincoln Memorial in view and the Washington Monument just behind. We anchored the boats and waited for the big fireworks display. DC did not let us down. The fireworks were great. The big boats were fun and there were a ton of kayaks out. It was the perfect ending to the day. We paddled in the dark back to the car and luckily there was very little traffic on the way home.

3.1 Mile Run
16.6 Mile Bike Ride
30 Minute Kayak

….and did I mention that it was 100 degrees???? We might be crazy but there is nothing like being on the water for the 4th of July fireworks in DC. It's my favorite holiday (right after Friday the 13th)!!

neVer forgeT

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Dear 32, I will neVer forgeT you. All of my running is dedicated to you.

Last Day

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Today is our last day of vacation. We head home tomorrow morning. We spent the day skiing one more time at our favorite resort. Today was a beautiful sunny day. The snow conditions were pretty good in the morning. We tried to stick to mostly groomed runs because the others were icy. Shortly before lunch we moved over to the Milly Express Lift and did a handful of runs there. The conditions were not too bad there because the sun was shining on that part of the mountain for the morning.

After lunch we went back to our favorite runs and even took one run in a harder area. The lift says “Experts Only” but it doesn't mean it. There are intermediate runs that start at the top of the lift. The conditions were not very good so we headed back to the other areas.

The snow was icy in some areas and wet in others. It made for interesting rides. It was also very tiring. We decided to cut out a little early due the bad conditions and tired legs.

Overall it was a great week of skiing and I'm already looking forward to our trip out here next year (geez, talk about thinking ahead….we haven't even left yet).

I'm hoping that all of the working out I did this week will have me motivated to run, bike, kayak, hike, etc at home. I love being outside and I'm going to be very sad when I have to be inside for full days next week at work. Maybe one day I can quit my job and be a ski bum.

Here are some “action” shots from today courtesy of Star Photo Utah.

Day on the dark side

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I spent the day with a snowboard strapped to my feet! This is a jump over to the dark side. Or maybe not…snowboarding might be conforming more than skiboarding like I normally do. It's pretty normal for me to be the only skiboarder on the mountain but snowboarding is pretty common.

Here I am holding my rental snowboard.

I did two runs with my buddy in the morning because I had time before my lesson. Those were pretty much a disaster. He was holding me up and I got very little instruction.

I took a morning lesson with a real instructor. She was great. For some reason I was expecting to ride the lift right away but we did not. The goal was the lesson to learn how to safely ride the lift and ride down the mountain (or in this case bunny slope). We started off to the side of the bunny slope doing some basics that allowed us to learn how to properly ride the lift. I was in a class with a father and a daughter. The father is an intermediate skier and the daughter decided to try snowboarding because she couldn't get the hang of skiing. They kept accusing me of not being a beginner but really I think I was just stronger and more athletic then they were. It was good to be in a class with other people but I think 3 was a good amount because we got individual attention.

After learning the very basics like how to fall, how to go straight, and how to use the heel edge we made our way over to the lift. That was pretty entertaining. The first time off the lift was a bit of a wild ride but the instructor was able to identify what I had done wrong so the next time was much smoother.

Riding down the hill wasn't too bad. I was able to quickly learn how to use my heel edge. I didn't fall too often. Most of the time I was able to slow down enough that I could sit if I need to stop. We rode the hill a few times before the lesson was over and our instructor deemed that we were all successful.

I met my buddy for lunch and then took him over to the bunny slope so that he could see what I had learned. I think he expected me to know more but was happy with my progress when I took him what the goal of the class was. We did a bunch of runs together before I admitted that my legs were very tired.

Overall it was a very good day. I feel like I learned a lot by taking the lesson and I think I will continue with lessons in the future if I decide I want to pursue this further.

Here are some pictures of me sliding down the hill.

And for the record my bum and my knee hurt. I fell twice in a way that actually hurts. But honestly I expecting to be in a lot more pain from what I've seen from other people so I will consider this a success. While I didn't wear a helmet I did elect to wear wrist guards and I'm glad I did because no matter how many times they tell you the correct way to fall you still want to put your hands out.

Tomorrow is our last day out here so I think I will jump back to skiboarding….but I have a feeling that my snowboarding days aren't over. It would be very unlike me to try something once and then give up.


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The big storm that was forecasted for last night turned out to be a bust and there was only 1 inch of new snow last night. We went to Brighton today hoping for a powder day but really didn't get that. It was really cold and windy. The snow itself was pretty good in the morning and most of the runs were groomed. Visibility was low and I had trouble keeping my toes warm. But it was still a fun day.

We mostly did easier runs today. All of my favorite blues. We bounced around quite a bit and tried not to get into a pattern of doing the same thing over and over.

I decided to try to ride a box in the terrain park. While going up the lift we discussed it and determined which trail would get us there. There were a total of 4 boxes in the park but it would only be possible to ride 3 on a single pass through. When I got to the first box I felt like there was a ledge that I wasn't going to make so I jumped off the ramp right before the box. I rode the second box!! In the middle of the box I felt like someone had applied the brakes and I was going to get stuck. I did my best to keep moving and then I noticed there was a jump off the end that I wasn't expecting but I rode it fine. And then when I got to the last box I decided to just jump the ramp at the end. The whole thing was pretty funny.

Other than riding the boxes it was a pretty typical day of skiing. The sun was starting to be visible late in the day but our legs are were getting pretty tired so we only got in a few runs in the sun.

Needed a day off

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We needed a break from skiing so we took a drive to a beautiful waterfall in Provo. The drive only took about an hour. We were able to see the waterfall from the road but decided to hike the trail that gets you to a better view. It was a very short hike on a paved trail but the trail was covered with snow and ice. The park was actually closed ….so don't tell anyone we were hiking there.

It was a very nice break for our legs. Here are some pictures of the waterfall.

And of the beautiful river.

After our short hike we hopped back in the car and drove to Sundance. There is a ski resort there which looked very small. Here are some pictures of that area.

We then started driving back while taking many pictures along the way.

We stopped at a little park for a picnic lunch and then continued our drive back through the beautiful mountains.

We drove through Provo and saw some of the BYU campus. Apparently unscheduled play and playing on Sunday is not allowed.

As we got back to Salt Lake it looked like clouds were forming in the mountains which is good news. It is supposed to snow overnight into tomorrow which means fresh powder for skiing tomorrow. Hopefully our legs feel well rested after spending the day taking in the beautiful views.

Park City

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Well we broke down and handed over our left legs to buy Park City lift tickets. Nah it really wasn't that bad but if you are buying them at the resort please note I take hand outs too (much much cheaper to get them elsewhere).

I guess my buddy felt like it was something we had to try. It was worth it for a day. We mostly skied the blue slopes which is what I do everywhere else. They were mostly really easy. Some had bumps which actually made them challenging. I did one double blue which is considered Advanced. It wasn't that steep but it had some nasty bumps. I thought I did quite well though. The conditions were less than ideal. The snow was getting pretty wet and heavy by the end of the day.

We did a 3.5 mile run called Homerun. The only challenge to it was dodging the beginning skiers. But I remember that I was one of those in the past so I try to be respectful. Anyway, it was a nice long run.

We rode many of lifts and tried out most the of the areas. The runs were pretty long so we didn't do nearly as many today.

There is a run called Quit 'N Time that lead you to a lift called Town Lift. The run takes you across a bridge literally into the town of Park City. Unfortunately the lift is an old school slow lift but it's still a pretty cool thing to try. And the lift actually crosses over top of another lift – I had never seen that before. You can also ride the Town Lift back down the mountain. I assume that is for lazy people that didn't reserve enough energy to ski down one more time.

Our legs were tired today and the slush was bad at the end of the day so we ended up quitting a little early. I think a break is in order for tomorrow. 3 days in a row is a lot especially when you ski/ride as hard as we do.

Here are some action shots courtesy of My Ski Photos.

Give ‘em the Bird

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Nah….not like that! We went to Snowbird today….otherwise known as The Bird. It is quite well known with serious skiers. When the Olympics were in Salt Lake some of the events took place at Snowbird.

It was another day with good ski conditions….much sunnier today. Snowbird is very tough mountain. There is not much terrain for an intermediate skier like me but I covered most of it. We started by going almost to the top and did a very very very long run. We did that a couple of times before heading across the mountain to another area. My favorite run is called Bananas. It's a nice little run with a couple of steep sections but nothing too hard.

Today, I only had trouble a couple of times. Once on an ungroomed run that wasn't very well marked. There was quite a bit of powder and it was reasonably steep. I did ok but required a little guidance. The other was on a section that I have skied before but is steep and I wasn't expecting to end up there. After snowplowing for a short section I put my skis together and skied the rest quite well.

After skiing we made our way over to the hot tubs which apparently are now trying to restrict people like us that sneak in even though we are not staying at the lodge. Luckily a guest with room key walked by and we were able to get out. We had to spend time somewhere because the road was closed to get back to the valley.

Overall it was a great day. I'm proud of myself for asking to go to this harder mountain.

Here are some pictures of me in action thanks to the Snowbird Photographers.