Monthly Archives: October 2012

Becoming lost.

The act of travel, and the art of becoming lost, are at once related and reliant upon each other.  Although travelling, at its essence, is the simple act of moving from one place to another, as we all know, it can also be so much more.   Travelling imparts knowledge, it signifies rank, class, and intelligence, it can humble, embolden, and enlighten.   For all time traveling has been used by humans to expand understanding and cultivate awareness.  To begin to truly understand the nature of the world around us, and ourselves, it is necessary to move around, and experience that world.  Additionally, the means by which you travel have drastically different influences upon our bodies, and minds. Continue reading

Enchantments Part 3, Little Annapurna and the Knitting Needles

This will be the last installment in a series of posts about our last big hurrah in the Stuart Range.  If you missed out, check out the overview, a report on some adventure-neering up the south side of McClellan Peak, and a pioneering scramble up the south face of Enchantment’s Southwest Peak.  This post is from day 6 of our trip, another great day of unknown adventure climbing at its finest.  We topped out on two of the highest Knitting Needles and blazed a line up the South face of Little Annapurna Peak.  Capped off with an amazing sunset this day was one I’ll not soon forget. Continue reading

Endurance, Recovery, and the Miracle of The Bike

This is a topic I’d been wanting to write about previously, but have only now found the motivation after my recent and unplanned decision to run a marathon.  Now, with my legs as tight as a drum, and my general mobility restricted to the house, I’ve found the motivation to put together some words on the subject. Continue reading

How to take a rest day in the mountains.

Truth be told, the only rest day Liz and I took on our recent 7-night trip in the Enchantments was our first full day in the alpine.  After slogging alongside Snow Creek and the 10-12 miles up to our base camp, a good meal and a nights rest were in order.  When the next day dawned, I was up and ready, taking in the beautiful surroundings and turning over all the endless possibilities that may fill the days ahead.  Although we both felt relatively well for having shouldered some big-ass packs for almost 5,000 vertical feet and 9 hours the day before, we thought it’d be wise to take a day to rest and recuperate, which took the form of a casual stroll up the broad Northeast shoulder of Little Annapurna Peak.  The next day, ready for adventure, we tackled our first adventure, a combination of 5th class climbing and scrambling over the Nightmare Needles and up the convoluted Southern expanse of McClellan Peak.  Check out the wright up here, or just look below, HA! Continue reading

Nightmares, Neverland, and Big Mac

It was our third day camped out in the headwaters of Crystal Creek.  We were as close to the edge of the permit zone of the Enchantment Basin, in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, as we could get.  Two days ago we had left Leavenworth with 50+ pound packs, loaded with food, fuel, and enough climbing equipment to keep us busy for over a week.  The awkward and oversized packs barely fit in our bicycle trailers and the thought of flat tires was a real threat on my mind.  We reached the trailhead without incident, and began the slog-fest to the high peaks above.  The 10+ mile approach took about 9 hours, and I was happy we made for an early start when around 5 o’clock in the evening we found a suitable spot, hidden, out of the way, and near abundant fresh water.  My ass had suffered, with at least one spot rubbed raw by the oversized expedition pack I was carrying.  Without a scale I’ll never know exactly how much my pack weighed, but my earlier excitement with carrying two ropes, 9 days of food, a tent, bag, and daypack had turned into happiness that I hadn’t injured myself carrying all this gear that most likely topped out at over 70 lbs, and was, hopefully, the heaviest pack I’ll ever carry.

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Just a Reminder…

This is a blog.  Simple.  A quick deconstruction of the word reveals its true meaning, a web log.  A diary.  A journal.  But more then that, the format and purpose of today’s blogs is to share.  I’m writing for you, even more than for myself.  Writing and photographing for me has become a way of expressing my worldview, sharing my thoughts, feelings, insights, and adventures.  The format and structure of this site and those like it allow for the sharing of ideas and following of readership.  You can comment, subscribe, or share it with your own friends and families.

This is a journal, and I usually treat it as so, my entries flowing mostly from a stream of consciousness that receive little or no editing.  But this is a journal of purpose, and while I often get lost in the web world of climbing, the hopes and dreams of a kid who loves mountains, I’d like to take this moment to remind myself, and you, why I created this space, why I’m still here writing, and the direction I hope to be going. Continue reading

Higher Ground

For the last week Liz and I had a base camp high in the Enchantment Peaks.  With Eastern Washington burning around us, many of the climbers and residents of Leavenworth and nearby towns have run off to seek higher ground and an escape from the smoke.  For those with automobiles, escape means Washington Pass, North Cascades, Smith Rock, or a variety of other destinations.  For Liz and I, not limited but bound to human power, we put our hopes on the high country of the Enchantment Peaks.  With fires blocking access to some of our bigger goals, we had to re-think our plans, and make the best of a world on fire.  We were rewarded with many days of clean air, some days of smoke, and one of the best times anyone could ask for. Continue reading