Saturday, June 23, 2018


We are on our way.  Pack weighed 42 pounds.  A bit heavy, but nothing to do about it now.  Hope everyone has a great two months while we're gone!

Friday, June 22, 2018


Food takes up space and has weight, the two things the postal service charges for.  This is for everything but our Salida box.

Mail drops to our Breck hotel, Salida (PT Wood's), a friend in Creede, and the Silverton post office.  We have a box for Leadville that Marc & Amanda are bringing out for us.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

happy national selfie day!

I'm not one for selfies, but I saw on the bookface that today is national selfie day.  So here you go.

Last time my hair was this short was 1999, my first day in the Army.

bike commute 32

Been pretty lazy this month but I'm still trying not to drive to work.  32nd bike commute of the year today.  I'm at run commute 33.  CityRock 84.  I've given up on Accolade and I'll be cancelling my membership before we leave, I just don't go enough to justify the cost.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018


Glad I didn't stress out over the trail closure, as it will be ending very soon.  We've been getting quite a bit of rain here in the Springs lately and we are glad it looks like we will come back to a house that hasn't burned down.

I am giving a food drop to a friend after work today, she is going to meet us 40 miles into our hike on Monday.  Shit is getting real.

I'm also shaving my head tomorrow, going with the GZ look for the trail.  I'll post before and after pics.  I'm not one to order $100 around but she floated the same idea and I shot that down pretty quickly.

Buddy Guy crushed it last night.  His shows are about an hour, half the usual length for a headliner, but at 81 he really gets after it for that hour.  Still one of the best guitarists around.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018


Just watching the clock until Saturday.

Haven't been running at all.  Got some blisters, took a bunch of days off, ran the Garden, took a week off.  Got out for an easy 10k on Saturday but that was it.  A few bike commutes, a few easy efforts at the rock gym, and the usual hour long dog hike in the AM.  Had friends and family visiting constantly over the previous three weeks, so the extra time was needed.  We are seeing Buddy Guy tonight, but then the schedule is clean between Wednesday and Saturday AM when we leave.

We are somewhat locked into a schedule from the start of the hike until Salida.  We have lodging in Breck, Leadville, and Salida.  When we get to Salida we will see what is going on with the trail over the last few sections.  The trail is currently closed and if we had started our hike a few weeks ago we would be forced to bail back to Silverton from Molas Pass.  Obviously we want to hike the entire thing but if we were only able to get to Silverton we would still be pretty excited about what we accomplished.  We would then return next year to finish the trail.  But I'm hopeful the monsoon season starts soon and the trail is open by the time we get there.

I will be posting to my FB page as signal allows, as that is much easier to update via phone.  If I can get access to a regular computer when in town, I'll throw something up here, but no promises.

Saturday, June 16, 2018


Pretty much about done packing.  For food I have a daily gallon size zip lock bag stuffed with 3000 calories, mostly junk food.  Here is one recent shopping trip:

Each zip lock weighs about 1.5 pounds.  Here's the first three days.

Lots of crappy junk food, which is high in calories and low in weight.  Pop tarts, snickers, star crunch, trail mix, peanut m&m's, nutter butter, kit kat, instant potatoes.  The big meal at supper will either be a Mountain House civilian MRE thing or two packets of ramen.  The plan is to ingest cheap, shitty, lightweight calories until we can get to a town and eat real food (pizza and cheeseburgers and beer).  Dietician to the ultra stars Meredith does not approve of this plan but I'll mostly be out of cell range so she won't be able to yell at me.

I have my pack ready for the first three days.  With six liters of water and three days of food I'm still under 30 pounds, which I'm stoked about.  Will probably take some of the dog food to help Holly ease into things.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

brewers rendezvous

Lucky us, our hike schedule puts us in Salida for the Brewers Rendezvous!  Already have tix and hotel lined up.

We are monitoring the fires and current trail closure (as it stands today we would have to end our hike in Silverton) but there's not much else we can do about it.  We are still at least 1.5 months away from approaching that area and things will have changed a lot by then.  If there is a fire that is going to affect our hike it probably hasn't started yet.

Monday, June 11, 2018


Shitty race but a fun day at the Garden Ten Miler.  Had some friends from Pitt visiting, and I drank way too much beer Friday and Saturday nights.  When I'm hungover I don't really feel physically bad, but mentally I'm unable to push through the pain when it shows up.  I ran decent for five miles, hitting halfway in exactly 35 minutes.  But there are some hills after that, and I just fell apart.  Finished in 1:13:36.  It's hard to negative split on the new course, but slowing down by 3:36 is pathetic.  Then again, I hadn't run since my 5k over a week before, I was dealing with some pretty bad blisters that I can't get to heal up, on top of the hangover, this was about the best I could have hoped for.  Great rest of the day, hanging at the Red Leg beer tent, then hanging at Tom's house, then Front Range in the evening for the Blue Frog jam.

I talked some mad shit to my buddy Jeff around mile three, and he responded by methodically crushing me a little bit each mile over the rest of the race.

Relive 'Morning Jun 10th'


Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Elephant Rock

When I was climbing last Thursday I got a huge blister on my left heel.  Didn't think much of it and just put a bunch of band aids over it for the 5k.  Then I rode both the 12 Hours of ERock (went 66 miles to get Cup 'o Dirt ride number five) and the 100 mile road ride on Sunday.  Which tore up the blister pretty good, and it's still kind of painful today.  I haven't run since Friday, and Mon and Tues were only quick bike rides to work and back.  Besides the stupid blister, the quads are still pretty fried as well.  Not expecting much at the Garden Ten Miler this weekend.

The rides went well though.  Not great, but good.  Just over ten hours on the saddle on Sat followed by eight on Sun.  Wanted to see what it was like to do two big days (time-wise, anyways) in a row to see what I'd be in for if I ever tried something like the Tour Divide.  Didn't go perfect, but it wasn't a total disaster either.

So it was a great big weekend of meh.  The 5k was mediocre.  The rides were OK but have left me feeling pretty beat up.  Will probably drop the cardio stuff down for a bit before we leave for the hike.

In sad news, my second dog passed away this morning.  RIP Meesh.

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Lost Creek

One last shake out hike over the memorial day weekend.  Back for some more exploring of Lost Creek Wilderness.  We went out Friday after work and hiked for about an hour before the dwindling light caused us to set up camp for the night.

Up fairly early on Saturday, which would be our biggest day of the trip.  Ended up getting 16.5 miles on the day.  Lost Creek has a reputation for being empty, but it was packed this weekend.  We never went more than 20 minutes without seeing another person. 

We discovered a limitation of setting up the tent without the rain tarp.  The dog was inside sleeping, but when she woke up and tried to get out the screen freaked her out and she sliced her way through.  Not sure she could see the screen.  Took a bit of duct tape to fix.

Sunday included some extra miles out and back on the Lake Pass trail so we could spend one more night outside.  13.2 miles on the day.

Monday was a breeze, just a three mile hike back up to the jeep.

Did I mention the place was packed?  The main parking lot was full, the overflow lot was full, and the cars stretched out for a while on the road.

Glad we did this as we learned quite a bit of stuff that we will use for our upcoming hike.  Dog crushed it and had a blast, though she did sleep for the next two days once we got home.

Monday, June 04, 2018


The bad news - not a great race for me at the track 5k on Friday night.  Truth be told I thought I could go sub 18 again.  But after three laps I found myself alone.  The four man pack in front of me was a bit too fast, the pack behind me was a bit too slow.  So I ran the next five laps solo, and struggled.  Good, hard effort, but the results just weren't to be had.  Seemed like a slow night as everyone was mildly disappointed with their times.

The good news - I am at a point where 18:39 is a disappointment for me.

Still had a blast getting back on the track.  Really hope we can get more of this kind of stuff in our town.  I jumped into this groups two mile run a while ago and I got crushed, finishing way back in last place in 11:50.  And while it was great to not finish in last place, I was happy to see more "slower" runners jumping in and giving this a go.  The track can be an intimidating place for folks.  There was a slow heat, where the winning time was around 19 flat, then my heat, where I finished in the middle of the pack but didn't get lapped.  Then there was a fast heat, with two guys sprinting to the finish around 15:30 and the last guy running around 18:30.

I will miss the next race in the series, the mile, but will definitely be there for the cross-country 8k.

Friday, June 01, 2018

no free ride for the dog

This ain't no easy walk in the park for the dog.

Mountainsmith K-9 dog pack that we got at Mountain Equipment Recyclers for $50.  One pound, three ounces.

That deodorant looking thing is some fancy paw protector stuff that $100 picked up somewhere.  The dog has never had issues with her paws and I hope that continues.

The food/water bowl was $20 from Living The Dream Brewing Company, one of our favorites.

The dog gets 1.5 pints of food three times a day while we're hiking.  Plus lots of treats, mostly from Zuke's.  We use the Kirkland brand that you can pick up from costco for $30 per ginormous bag.  The usual non-hike diet for her is two pints total per day, one at 7AM and one at 7PM.

red rock canyon climb

Got to head out climbing in Red Rock Canyon on Thursday after work.  Climbed two routes, Nose In A Day and Billy's Ghost Dance, both rated at 5.5 (about the easiest grade there is, though both climbs were hard enough for me).  I'll have to take a climbing break while we hike, but I'll be hitting it hard once we return.  If I can just get good enough to confidently climb 5.7, which shouldn't take much, it opens up a whole new world of stuff I can walk to from my front door.

I even made the local CMC group insta page.