Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Catching Up

The past 10 days or so have been spent catching up with family, catching up on chores, and catching up on fun activities that have been put off for too long.

After fumbling through the Christmas rush, it was great to get out for a run with my brother, Robert (a.k.a. Bubba, Flood, ....). The Bubster and I have both missed out on a lot of December mileage, so it was good to get out. Robert completed the Marine Corp marathon this year, but had not pulled on his running shoes since the race. We did an easy 5, and spent the rest of the day with our family.

On Friday, Dawn and I ran the Pinnacle Loop plus an added loop to get the mileage to about 6.5. Whew, 2 days in a row...I doubled my mileage for the month! It was a nice run and great to get up the hill again!

On Saturday, we hit the climbing gym and then the Goat and I headed up north to the Adirondack Mountains for some ice climbing. The DAKS are one of my favorite spots year-round, and has some of the best waterfall ice in the country. While the weather was not perfect for climbing, we had some fun. We climbed a waterfall route called Tendonitis on Sunday. It was fun, but the weather was way too warm and the ice was melting quickly. By the afternoon, climbing the fall was like taking a shower. The ice quality was OK, but was quickly deteriorating. We called it an early day and hung out our gear to dry.

On Monday, we climbed a couple short routes in Chapel Pond Canyon, and then headed home. One of our climbing partners was sick, and wanted to get home. There were very few climbable routes anyway based on the thaw, so we were fine with it. It was just fun to get back on the ice after missing ice climbing all of last year. This is a shot of Kevin rappelling off the right side of "Lions on the Beach".This is a shot of Ged (right) and me (left) leading Tendonitis, a Grade 3+ waterfall on the north face of Pitchoff Mountain.Here's a shot (left to right) of me, JDW, Ged, and Goat at the beaver pond below the north face of Pitchoff Mtn.

On Tuesday, the Goat and I scouted out some new running trails and got ourselves lost. We ended up at a quarry. While we knew the it existed, I had never understood the magnitude of the site. It's the 3rd quarry along the Metacomet Trail and it's really sad to see the land butchered. I think people would think twice about all the waste of our natural resources if they could see the quarry. I brought along my new camera, so you can check out the pics below. The wind was so strong that it was hard to make forward progress at times. I have never seen wind that bad. In fact, a large tree fell down behind my house while we were out for the run. Luckily, it missed the house.

Today, I took my daughter, Tara, and her boyfriend, Devon, skiing at Ski Sundown. It started snowing shortly before we arrived there at 8:30, and we had a covering of 1-2" of fresh powder when we got to the top of the mountain. It snowed the entire time we were there, so the conditions just kept getting better. By the time we left, there were at least 6" of powder, and I was loving it. Ski Sundown is a small hill, but it's the best in CT. The conditions we excellent considering the weather we get here in southern New England. This is Tara (right) and me (left) carving some turns.
This is Tara and her boyfriend, Devon, shredding it in the pow!
What a great week and what a great year! When I think back on all the great activities that I have experienced this past year, I am so happy. It's been an amazing year, and I'm looking forward to a great 2009 as well.

I hope you all look back on 2008 with some great memories, and wish you all the best in 2009! I also hope to get out and have some fun with many of you readers over the course of 2009. Running, climbing, skiing, or just sharing some stories and laughs. It's all good!

All the best for 2009!

Steve