Monday, May 26, 2008

8 day hiatus from the internet...

What began as a 3 night 2 day visit with Gabe, turned into a week long escapade through the Colroado Plateau! Since Gabe was/is a faculty member on 'The Western Field Trip' from UWP, we planned on meeting up to hang out for a few nights while he was in my neck of the woods. It just made sense! I requested the days off of work when he was slated to be near Boulder and then was planning on heading to Moab with the class (20 students and 3 faculty). Turned out that I wasn't scheduled to work the entire week. I made one last call to be sure that I wasn't scheduled to work and the plans were set. With some logistical support and ideas from Cari, my week was set perfectly... Moab Monday-Wednesday, travel to Zion National Park, stay until Saturday morning, travel back to CO-- Durango-- just in time for the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic Crit on Sunday.

Since I was only planning on being gone for 2 days, I didn't bring my computer. Weird for me. No e-mail for 9 days. crazy... and honestly, I didn't have too much to catch up on when I got back.

The week was great. I packed my bike, a bouldering pad (from Missy's sis Kris), and a couple changes of clothes. I got my workouts in and Gabe and I were able to spend some excellent time together driving through CO and UT AND gallivanting through some of the most beautiful scenery in the US. Here are some photos to document the weekend...

Golden Gate Canyon State Park-- Beautiful, yes... but it took me about 3 hours to get figure out where they were camping! When in doubt... jump the locked gate and walk back to the campsites... just to make sure that your party isn't there. In my case they were and it took me an extra 2 hours to get back to the correct place!
Gabe lecturing in Professor Valley outside of Moab- he was actually doing a talk about climbing Castleton Tower and also about the rock that is found in the Moab area.

We were taking a break from bouldering. I actually worked (climbed) two problems... attempted about 5. Then I was tired. You can tell that he is absolutely as thrilled as I was about the prickly pear flowers. Believe it or not, they opened while we were bouldering at Big Bend.
Zion National Park. We hoofed it across this stream (the Virgin River) that is running at full capacity to get to the other side so we could hike the approach to a climbing route. The stream was cold. very cold.

My head is covering the 'mittens' of Monument Valley in northern Arizona. When i busted across Southern Utah and Northern AZ to get to Durango-- I saw the Glen Canyon Dam, Lake Powell, Monument Valley, some really seedy gas stations and many roads with no services for miles.

The race in Durango was tough! It started fast from the gun. What I have been learning is that I do only have a book of matches to burn... not a box. I'm learning my limits and when and how hard and how long I can go. Tough lessons, but good ones. Watch for more photos.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Check out this collection...

Just think of what happens over the years if you tell someone you like "frogs" or "giraffes" of "snowmen." Don't be a hector collector. At least I can put my entire spoon collection into a shoebox.... if you need to know more about the frog collection, feel free to e-mail me.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

The Hurley-- where everyone should go... or not.

So I made it back from Gila. I have much to report from that week, but that will come in a post following this one! It is much too late to provoke such thoughts about the Tour de Gila this evening... But I need to let you all in on a couple sweet photos.

First of all, when we were in NM we didn't stay in Silver City, we stayed in Hurley. Now for all those wisconsinites, who are reading... we all know that Hurley is where hwy 51 ends and the fun begins. It just so happens that Hurley, WI is on the border of Da U.P. (the upper peninsula of Michigan)-- AND the reason why it is where fun begins is because the last establishment in Wisconsin on Hwy 51 happens to be Shooters Strip Club... So wouldn't you know that I had a few chuckles when I saw the Hurley Bar.

Missy and I did some investigation one night to see what this place was like-- we had no idea of what to expect. I may have built this story up to be some crazy story-- but it wasn't. We met a friendly bartender who insisted on "frying me up beans" she kept asking me what kind of beans I wanted... of course, I didn't understand- and asked a few questions. Come to find out she just wanted to know what to pour me. It was a short lived escapade and we found no prospects in the Hurley Bar for Missy.

What we did find for Missy was this guy-- unfortunately he had just left an hour before we arrived-- he had stopped by the pub in Silver City to drop off his photo. Missy says she likes the photo of his bike the best... right... sure you do Missy!!**

My cool bike shop job is paying me for 2 hours tomorrow to GO mountain biking on demo bikes this week! I'll be testing a Specialized Stumpjumper tomorrow and two different treks this coming Thursday and Friday.

As far as racing goes, the Cowgirls will make an appearance at a couple local crits this weekend in Denver and in Longmont.

FYI This is actually a photo of a photo at a local brewery in Silver City.
We just thought it was hilariously gross! Sorry if you're offended... I know its risque...