Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Out on the bike, in the mountains this time

Why have I not been mountain biking all year? Dumb. Dumb. Dumb. I forgot how fun it is. Jeremy Jolley and I went up South Fork this afternoon. The nice fall colors, great temps, and good company made this little ride really rejuvenating and fun.

Jeremy snapped these pics with his phone.

Friday, September 24, 2010

An open letter to my friend Winter

Dear Winter,

I am excited to see you. Don't worry about coming on too strong, I like it when you are aggressive. Don't worry about occupying all of my time, you are worth it. Take all the space you need, I don't mind in the least. I really think we should take our relationship up to the next level. I will try to spend more time with you, I hope to spend the night more often.

Sincerely yours,

It is getting closer

A Little of this.

Leads to some of this.

All for this.

I want it...

The new LOOK 695. It is one elegant piece of machinery. Do I need it? No. Do I want it? Yes.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Interbike. The trade show that brings the cycling industry together every year to showcase new product. It is the meet and greet of the industry. The five day event has a two day outdoor demo where everyone can ride bikes on an assortment of trails and roads. The last three days are where business happens. Retailers talk about ordering, getting new accounts, and looking at trends.

Even though I am growing tired of being inside, there is a certain positive energy that seems to surround bikes. I love them. Go outside and go for a ride.

A massive booth from specialized

Las Vegas.... props to whoever settled here before air-conditioning and cars. What did they even build houses with? Not a tree for miles.

A little lull

Do I find mountaineering literature interesting? Yes. During this past week I have been working down in Las Vegas at Interbike. Although the general vibe here makes me want to get out and ride I am trapped inside a convention center from dawn until dusk. Instead of letting myself get a little stir crazy I have turned to a book. This has kept me more than occupied the last few days.

I love mountains. I sit and I read online about them for hours. I look at photo after photo. I don't know quite what it is that draws me in and makes me so excited about them. This book chronicles a tragic event on K2 in 2008 and then goes on to profile different historical expeditions on the mountain.

Why do people get themselves killed in pursuit of a summit? This seems to be a question that hits a sensitive chord for quite a few people. It can get just as heated as any political or religious debate. Even though this book shares some of the devastating effects of mountaineering it still inspires. No one wants tragedy, but the mountains can teach a person much about their own personal character. Hardship is the worlds greatest school, some people go find it instead of waiting for it to find them.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


As the 206 miles was winding to a close we passed the five kilometers to go marker. I surveyed the group and picked a position that I thought would leave me in good placement for the sprint. Someone broke away with three kilometers to go and with the finish line in sight I wasn't going to let him hang out there. I bridged the gap, bringing the group with me, which resulted in me being on the front of the group for the last kilometer. I continued to glance back to see if anyone would be making a move. With close to 600 meters to go someone attacked but I saw it coming and jumped up in full pursuit as he passed me. I hammered everything I had left into my pedals passing him before the line claiming the field sprint for second place.

The day was beautiful. I couldn't have asked for better weather or better company. All through the day I had people I knew with me. I had a great support crew (my Mom, Neena, Jessie, and Megan) who were down to business when I needed them to be.

This year Jeff and Todd rode sections of the course. It has been awesome to have them pick up the sport and begin to race. I am excited to train this next year with them both.

It is always an interesting thing riding into Jackson. This year I was greeted by snow capped peaks and refreshingly cool temperatures. This ride closes my racing season every year, and this year I went out strong. Thanks Mom and Dad.

After over 50,000 revolutions of my pedals I ended up standing on the right of first place.

A family that races together, stays together.

I am now a painter

Tonight I painted my first painting... I think I could get really into this painting stuff. I actually want to do some sculpting as well.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

A quick visit to the Uintas

12:30 a.m.: I lay staring up at the stars cursing the fact that I thought it would be a good idea to bring my summer bag. It was cold. I tried to get back to sleep but after I began to shiver I got out of my hammock. I ended up sleeping in the dirt snuggled up next to Neena. It may have been one of the longer nights in my life. It got to the point where my sleeping bag got turned around and I was sleeping with my face in the dirt. I was too tired to care.

The blessed sun finally peeked over the horizon so I got up and made some warm oatmeal. As the rest of the group began to stir we all talked about the miserable night and laughed. It isn't real camping unless some part of it is absolutely miserable. After eating we got our climbing gear together and headed for the crag for a fun morning of climbing.

We were in the Ruth Lake area. I had originally planned to go to Notch Lake but we got a late start and there wasn't as much selection for climbing.

Climbing in the Uintas is always a nice change. It was late enough in the season that all the mosquitoes have died off.

Top: Neena, Me, Mo, Shelby, Kendal, Landon
Bottom: Tanner, Alex

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Outdoor Retailers

A few weeks ago, before our trip to Lake Powell, I was hired on by SOAR Communications to help out at the Outdoor Retailers show up in Salt Lake. It was pretty mellow work, I just manned the press room or was out front giving the media their credentials.

The Benefit of the job was getting my buddies, Robbie and Brett, into the show. We walked around for a little bit when I had a break. They were both on missions to give some of the celebrity climbers a hard time. Here is how one situation went

Robbie casually strolls up to Alex Honold, one of the best climbers in the world who has put up some of the craziest free solos on some of the biggest walls in the world.

Robbie: Are you guys coming to the Pool Party?
Alex: I dunno?... what pool party?
Robbie: The pool party. The big pool party.
Alex: Where is it?
Robbie (with an intent smile on his face): at my friends house.

Alex started to look really confused. You could tell he was starting to think this kid was crazy. Robbie kind of cracked up and let him know he was just kidding. Alex started to laugh, he wasn't sure if it was a party that his sponsors were wanting him to go to or what the deal was. I may have not portrayed it to be as funny as it was, but I was dying. Then Brett asked Chris Sharma, the poster child of climbing, for his autograph with "thanks for the beta" written over the top of it (in climbing terms it basically means "thanks for the pointers").

All in all it was a great experience.

Crunching for Lotoja

With all the final days of my summer being consumed by my wonderful internship and Lake Powell I was unable to spend as much time on my bike as I probably should have. So on Saturday a group of us rode the Alpine Loop. We went up and over to Highland and grabbed some grub at the Subway before turning around and going back over for a second time. I cut my ride a little short though, I was hoping to ride closer to 120 miles. I didn't even clear 80. Oops.