Saturday, September 19, 2009


I was able to tame a bit of my aforementioned "mountain crabbiness" this past weekend by making a quick trip out to the Wasatch. The Paasch clan took me in for another great weekend of climbing and mountain biking.
Friday Kelly and I were both pretty tired, as we both were running off around 4 hours of sleep, but we decided to head up into Little Cottonwood Canyon and do some climbing. I'd never been up to the limestone above Alta, so we did a mostly sport line high up in the canyon. It felt so good to be in the Wasatch again. I miss the days where it was right out my back window. Maybe it will happen again someday and last.
I found the limestone area we were in to be easier per grade than the bottom of the canyon's granite hardman trad routes. It was nice to feel strong for a change. :)
Saturday brought mountain biking, and what I may be so bold as to label the best outdoor day of 2009 so far. Kelly was able to round up a full carbon Fuel 100 for me to ride for the day (thanks!) and we did part of the Wasatch Crest Trail, with a dip down into Millcreek Canyon and a short jaunt of the Great Western Trail for good measure. I was fully expecting to feel weak at altitude (around 10,000 feet at times) due to where I live, but the mountains and expensive bikes must have brought something out in me, because I was feeling stronger than most days at home at 800 feet. The beginning of our route included "Puke Hill", which by the name you can tell is not typically a comfortable climb. I'd walked this hill other times having been to the Crest, but this time I rode every inch of it. I almost cleaned it all without stopping, but the last 50 feet got me. Next time. I'm happy to have not walked any of it though! It went great.
With a "Puke Hill" motivational climb in my system, I was pretty jazzed to be in the mountains and feeling strong for the rest of the day, and thoroughly enjoyed myself. It's great to be in the world's great scenery with good friends.
And we almost made it out with no crashes for once, until the last 1/4 mile of trail, were unfortunately Julie washed out on her Enduro at speed. Bummer. Torn up knee, but no damage inside. Lucky. All in all a good day despite the wreck.
I'm going back to UT soon. And hopefully to live again someday, but we'll see what the responsible world requires of me.

Coming down from climbing in Little Cottonwood...

Actually feeling really great at the top of "Puke Hill"....

Final descent into Big Cottonwood Canyon....