November 23, 2015

Opening Weekend

Andrea and I are huge fans of spring (and summer, when possible) skiing. So we typically aren't too antsy to get out in the early fall when there is only two inches of snow over the grass and rocks. We figured that even if you wait until mid-December to get started, you'll still be skiing for 7 months. That being said, I decided that I couldn't wait any longer and thanks to a push from our friend Amiee, we kicked off the ski season over the weekend at Brighton. We did the usual "skin up to the top of Great Western" laps on Saturday and Sunday - in warm, sunny conditions. It felt good to be back on the snow and make some turns. 

Now our fingers are crossed for El Nino to deliver the goods!!!

Don't Call it a Comeback

It's been roughly 7 months since there has been a running-specific post on Wasatch and Beyond. Time for a brief update...

After withdrawing from London (Jan-Mar training recap) it took me a LONG time to feel like my "old self" again. Much, much longer than I expected. I posted detailed account with plenty of thoughts and introspection on my running log back on August 4th. Long story short, something was wrong all summer - a combination of factors known and unknown. I needed a good break. 

In mid to late August things started to turn around and I've been slowly regaining my fitness and feeling the spark again. The injuries and illness cleared up. I feel normal feel normal again. My legs got their pop back. I have kept things sensible and have been running for fun... no "training" yet, or plans to on the horizon. Over the summer I felt like I was 31 years old going on 40... now I feel like I'm 31 years old going on 20... or maybe 25, again!

Andrea has been slowly building up her running since March, finally coming around after a 2.5 year, 2 surgery, injury layoff. By mid-October we were both itching to jump into a couple local races on weekends where we weren't traveling or doing other fun stuff. We've been running some 5Ks (road and XC) and are planning to do a couple more (Turkey Trot!) to test our fitness before ski season begins in earnest. 

Its fun to be back out on the roads, competing together, for the first time in a long time. We both love simply running for the sake of running, but its fun to put on the racing flats once in a while too.

November 4, 2015

Bryce Canyon Fantasyland

One of our all-time favorite runs... Andrea on the Bryce Canyon Rim Trail

After a couple days at Zion National Park, we scooted over to Bryce Canyon National Park to give Jenna her first look at the hoodoo fantasyland. The weather was unseasonable warm and we had a great time running, hiking, and taking in the spectacular views. This time of year is "off season" at Bryce so we essentially had the place to ourselves.


More photobombing of poor Andrea.
Her choice to marry into this family!!!

Breaking up the drive home at the famous Beaver Valley Chevron

Zion (still no "s"!)

My sister (Jenna) and Andrea's parents were both out in Utah for a long weekend over Halloween. Somehow Andrea and I haven't been to Zion/Bryce in 3 years, Jenna has never been there, and its been ~15 years for the Norths. So we headed to Springdale for a couple days to soak in some sunshine down in Zion National Park.

What's the quickest way to know whether someone is from Utah or not? For some reason that I can't figure out, Utahns incorrectly add a "S" to the end of "Zion". This has become my biggest pet peeve. And yes, I realize I have a really great life if the incorrect pronunciation of Zion National Park is among my "problems." But still, that would be like referring to the Grand Canyon as "Grands" for short. It doesn't make sense... ahhhhh!!! :-)

In any case, I love showing people to immense Utah landscapes for the first time. Angel's Landing, no matter how many times you go up there, is stunning. We saw over a dozen bighorn sheet near the tunnel on the east side of the park, which was also really cool.


Photobombing Andrea

Mt Carmel Junction doesn't have much, but it has this!

From here we headed over to the Bryce Canyon Fantasyland.

October 16, 2015

The new normal?

Mid-October, late afternoon, 9500 feet - still warm enough to go topless

We've only lived in Utah for five years, so maybe I'm not drawing on enough data to make this statement, but it sure feels like every Fall gets warmer and longer. Maybe this is the new normal for our climate? As long as it snows (a lot) eventually, we love the "extended summer" season. In an ideal world, it would be 80 degrees every day until Thanksgiving, then snow 10 feet in a week while we're back East visiting family (to setup a base), then we can ski until the following summer after a 700" winter/spring. Fingers crossed! :-)

The start of the climb to Mt Superior. We did this again, but can't post the pictures for a while... you'll see why.

A warm October evening at Alta

Glenwild Loop - Mountain Biking in Park City

Fall colors still hanging around near Guardsman Pass