Sunday, August 17, 2014

Are You Kidding Me???? Oh, I Mean, In A Good Way!

The Boy Dog Was So Stoked About Water IN Camp
Let the amazing weekend Get-A-Way begin. Shadow Boy & I jumped in Toyota w/ The Blue Z and Arwen, next stop, besides for the piss breaks for Baby A, 8700ft. Just a mere 2 + hour drive away, absolute paradise in the forest awaits are arrival. We veered off 550  and onto County RD 7. The dusty dirt road continued bumping along for about 8 miles. What we found was pure bliss. May the photos below paint the picture of 1,000 words!!!!

Imagine if you will, OK, No More Cheesy Twilight Monolog, upon arriving, the dogs flew out of the car, smelled faint scents from long ago, and ran like crazed animals. Shadow took me over to the fire pit and showed me were we would be cooking his 3inch thick T-Bone steak to perfection over an open flame of course.

All of these photos were shot w/a GoPro 3 Silver at 11MP. In the background of this photo is the 14er Mt Snuffles. Have have climbed that monster but have no interest in reliving that accomplishment. The bouldering of that beast isn't all that fun and takes a sh*t load of time.

Another sweet camp, which was quickly found, occupied by two gals, way exposed to the main road though, is a pretty cool site. Notice the puffy white pillows floating our way.

Whats a blog w/o a Boy Dog marking the territory?????

Again, so stoked to have this stream, creek, sound bed of napping to. I can so appreciate clear snow melt off, the ripples from a smooth rocked stream bed, a seen of clear bliss.

And running Arwen was top priority  for me!! Throwing a disc was rather easy at this altitude and watching her chase the shadows from above was a joy. I don't know if she could see the disc but never lost sight of the shadows on the ground. She was just happy to run circles and hang w/the boys.

True Summer Storm Colorado Style

Thankfully, my brother showed up, set up the pop up, cracked a beer, all before Mother Nature rolled in. Hail, heavy rain, and rumbling thunder AT the time of lightning strikes. The amount of water that added up was exciting. Will it ever end?????

Calm after the storm!!!

We walked a weeeeee bit lower down valley and checked out multiple camp sites that were super impressive for camping.

Most sited had fire pits and the mighty little creek wasn't far from a treasured site. Even in this photo of Shadow, check out the beauty behind him or the cool water between his toes. All of these sites rocked.

I do like this photo above. Mt Sneffels captured in the most postcard perfect moment in time. This little meadow that we walked through was lush, rich w/a verity of greens, and wildflowers dotted the open spaces. What a peaceful walk by all. The dogs were happy that the lightning was past.
And The Boy Dog Ate

The Birthday MONTH Boy Dog

Great shot of the San Juan Range. And this is just a small portion of the range in Southwestern Colorado. I was also pleased by how few trees are dead compared to Summit County.

 These last three photos were basically a sweep from my brothers point of view were Shadow & I were posing for our Christmas 2014 Holiday Greeting Card. Up until this photo, we had hiked though a rain forest type of atmosphere. We were soaked w/sweat but the temp was perfect. On a side note here, my training for the Lead King has paid off. While training w/just the Boy Dog, having nothing to compare to, I was able to hold a conversation w/ my brother while hiking along the trail. Shadow & I waited a few times for my brother to catch up and catch his breath. Our hike started early in the morning at an elevation of 8,716ft & we still had approximately 1,700ft of climbing in about 3.9miles. My legs felt strong and my hips were fine until about this photo. I stretched my hip flexors and psoas while I waited for my brother to take this photo and catch up. My body was feeling great, consumed plenty of water, and ate well before and during. Most chomped on a few handfuls of my own mixed trail mix.

Looking back was worth it as this photo displays wildflowers, a majestic mountain range, and deep into the valley near Ridgeway Colorado. Just after this photo, an army of mosquitoes assaulted us from above, sideways, from below, an all out war for flesh. Shadow Boy & I took off. A quick glance at my Garmin to see the pace at 12min mile. We climbed and didn't look back at for my poor brother. We didn't leave him in any kind of danger, but I knew he would never even try to match my pace. The Boy Dog and I popped out on this ridge line that was gorgeous as all get out.
One of the best points of view thats unmarked by man. Soon, my brother rejoined and we were near the next memorable photo op.

Shadow & I On Pace

He Can Smell The Lake

 Shadow Boy had a few sips off some little stream crossings but decided that laying down is the only way to lap up this snowy run off. He would only drink for about 10 seconds and then quickly up and off to mark, smell, and back to rehydrate before starting this routine all over. Talk About Happiness!!!!!! Around this lake  ( 10,317ft ) is were we ate our pre made wraps of hummus, brie, spinach, yellow bell, & dried salami. We soaked up the sun and reminisced about childhood adventures, old girlfriends, and setting new goals. You know, We Bullsh*tted like brothers do. We relaxed and I stretched for about a half hour or so and began packing up for our decent back to camp. I was still mesmerized by the colors that the wildflowers offered. I mean, flowers are flowers, but alpine flowers and cacti in bloom are totally different. They scream to the pollinators to come pollenate me because we don't have long.

And The Colors

You just can't imagine how loud this raging water fall was and a little fuchsia from the plant named Indian Paint Brush in the foreground. Looking back, I wish we would have hiked down to the three smaller pools inside the this powerful waterfall. Those little eddy outs would have been nice to dip in.

The Boy Dog was heading for a little drink and a cool soak. I could have easily hung out an extra hour here and absorbed the sheer beauty this place had to offer. But when my brother caught up and rested, away we went around the next bend of breath taking beauty.

He was giving me that look like, "Must You Keep Doing That", "How Many More Photos Of Me Do You Need", "Shouldn't You Be Doing Something"??? Those kinds of photos crack me up. They are County Fair worthy.

More Water, More Wildflowers, More Awesomeness, & More To Come

This guy's shirt cracked me up!!! I missed his name but he said that he was from Provo Utah and hadn't been up this high before. I checked me for water, made small talk, photo, & he was on his way. Wonder what he thought of me????

Straight down a few thousand feet. One slip & Oh Boy

I love this shot!!! I don't even remember taking it. Wish this was taken w/a sweet Cannon D90 or something high end. Shadow Boy was a trooper for a 9 year old and clearly enjoyed celebrating his birthday month w/us.

Moss, Shrooms, & A Pine Tree Growing IN This Fallen Tree

My brother found all kinds of mushrooms and quickly became like a little boy in a moist forest of goodness. Everyone he found, gave me the name, how to dry it, how to cut it, what it complements, funny we never ate any at camp. I finally had to go as I wasn't ready to cool down. Shadow was TOTALLY pissed by the waiting around.

So The Boy Dog and I took Off. This stretch of the trail is were my confidence grew as I reflexed on the day. I have posted before about feeling slow or an ache or pain would show up after mile 5. Today, I was very comfortable w/my sub 10min mile pace at this point and focused on my lower half. I noticed how my toes spread during push off, how my knees were lined up over my feet, and how centered my low gravity hugged the trail of switch backs. My arms were relaxed and fully engaged w/synced steps.

We made the last of the trail a blur. I still stopped, acknowledged the on coming hiker that Shadow is very friendly, moved to the side as so they could pass, and fell forward w/speed.

Sure wished for a better photo of this trail head marker. At this point, I hit stop on the Garmin, also stopped during "lunch" at the lake, for data from the days hike. Shadow Boy & I began drinking water and I slowly stretched and reflected on my present body. I really am feeling better and recovering much quicker. We hiked the 7.68 mile up and back in 3 hrs 38 min 26 seconds. We climbed 1,738ft in just under 1 hr 30 min and I forget the milage at that point. Mt brother was worked when we hit the lake but seemed better when he rejoined Shadow & I near the trail head. Shadow & I took a COLD and rejuvenating plunge in the creek. Oh, it felt so good on my knees and feet. A party of tent campers made some comments about how we looked just sitting in the water. Nothing bad, just small talk, where we were from, how long was the hike, stuff I couldn't careless about because my hearing is so bad and the water was flowing.
More To Discover

The photo of all photos!!! After climbing out of the creek, we headed back towards the road, as only to rejoin my brother, Shadow & I found this camper's stuff. A vintage KAFM water bottle!!! Our little 300 watt community radio satiation is represented at about 8,500ft!!! And The Boy Dogs Face!!! This photo captures how amazing this day, area, lifestyle has become.

How was your weekend??? When have you camped last??? Whats for dinner when you are camping??

1 comment:

  1. This trip looks epic! And awesome for aches staying away and getting to run at a good pace! It's funny, boy dog and my lab have some of the same tendencies. My lab smells water and goes running!