Friday, February 27, 2009

Days are Getting Longer.

Had a hard time getting DPs this week. Nevertheless, it was a good week for trekking. I managed five for five days in the foothills above Centerville. Some days with Dalt and some days with Babs and some with both. We usually get a pretty good climb (1000 ft) and get the heart rate up with jog and lunge combo. At the top we get a good stretch, then we descend through grass and scrub slopes around 20-25 percent grade. At that slope its fun to get a good "fast-feet" work-out, good for the coordination and mental stimulation. We usually get down the mountain in about 1/3 the time it takes us to get up. This week we took in some good views of the Bald Eagles that have been feeding out in Farmington Bay. At one point we saw 14 at once, all circling in a vortex type fashion. We also came across a little coyote lair with some deer bones. We explored a little cave where we had seen some cougar tracks earlier this winter, nothing found. On the final fifty yards of the last slope of the day on Friday, I rolled my right ankle. I got down to the river straight-away to get the deep freeze on early. Four advils, elevation, and a compression bandage did the trick. A great week of fitness. Three rugby practices, and in the foothills, about 4500 ft. vert and 12 miles.

Rugby practice has moved outside, so the transition to spring has begun. First game next week in St. George. Makes me feel like I need to get as many DPs in as possible whilst the snow lasts.

On that note the Haggis Traveling squad for the St. George trip was named today:
Adam Ullrich
Nate Herrshcer
Brad Anderson
Ryan Babinksi
Dave Shelledy
Andrew Jewkes
Ryan Dunyon
Jon Dalton
Mike Griffee
Garreth Long
Robert Lopez
Jason Pye
Ryan Fletcher
Pablo Oleiro
Joe Lomu
Chet Blasucci
Preston Miller
Alex Moore
Trevor Williams/ Pete Levave
Johnny Sione
Nate Hardman
Iose Tafaoiali

Well done. Its good to have the pre-season done with, now down to business.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

From Rookie to Sophomore

Saturday Skiday. I knew that we needed to start this one early if everybody was going to get theirs in. I met Dalt at bbcoa at 4:40, Butlers by 5:02. Forgot to check the temp, but not too anything. Our goals were to be on top of Circleawl before dawn, take one or two runs in the trees, and be home by 8:30. Skinning up the gully was a little hairball, steep icy sections and narrow river crossing, but very nice. Where the canyon opens, we went left up to the saddle (the whole time eyeing the soft pow tree runs for the decent). From the saddle we skinned up the ridge to Circleawl Peak. When we got there, I noticed the slope headed south. It was baked, wind-blown concrete. I took one ski off, stripped the skin and put the ski back on the ground. (some may not have noticed, but I just made a rookie mistake). Before I knew it, I nudged the ski (which was still in uphill mode, so the break doesn't engage) and down it went. To our horror, we watched it go on down, make a few turns, pickup some speed and disappear over the ridge. Once it was gone from sight we could still hear it skipping over the ice 500-600 ft below. We stood there in shock as the sun came up over 10,420.

I booted down to the ridge it had gone over, but did not see where the ski had gone. I went back up, got my other ski, and we descended to the south in search mode. About 500 ft down, there it was intact.

So I snagged it, we traversed around the mountain to the north side, saw how nice the trees were going to be, checked our time, switched to uphill, skinned up to take every bit of vert we could, and had some great tree skiing.

We were buzzing as we got down to the home-run. So as we came down across the 18 inch wide river crossing I was no worries, full jedi (Dalt as well) . But as we came to the second crossing I snagged a tip and went head on into the river. I was hanging by my skis. I looked up to see the urgency in Dalt's demeanor, which then caused me great alarm. After a long 10 seconds or so, I was able to get my skis off and Dalt hauled me out of the river (no photos provided) . Full-soak, the truck wasn't far. We were home by 8:30. Mission accomplished.

The kiddos had cousin night at in Ogden, so we were off to pick them up and go for a day at Snowbasin by 9:30. Blue-bird full parking lot type of day. Got a great table with Jed, O-Dog, Mr. Miles, (see video at Gary, and Reilly. We chatted with the usual Ogden/Basin suspects, and got some unbelievable runs from Elle and Talin. Notice the princess pose.

We were able to get Ava on with us for a few runs as well. The first time we took her on the lift, as we gained elevation Ava took a deep breath and held on like a spider monkey. But once we started to ski she was all about it. Mindy looks like a James Bond girl.

At the start of the day I was still harnessing Talin and we were sporting the edgy-wedgy. (see video at By the end of the day he was definatly a Sophomore. I however remain a Rookie.

Listen for the Whoa-hoo at 39 secs.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

USA (Filet) Mignon. February 19, 2009

An early and somewhat miraculous pick-up of Giles at 5:15, then Fletch at 5:40. We were to our undisclosed and very appreciated parking spot by 5:55. About 19 degree (f) and clear skies. The moon was a slight fingernail. Our goal was to skin to the radio towers in USA bowl and partake of the good turns on the way down. As you can see from my drawering (sic) there, we started off too far east and then corrected back too far west. By the time we came out of the trees we were no longer on an uphill skin track, but following up someones descent path. No worries, only about 500 ft. of vert. to go. We assessed our path options and bee-lined southwest to the ridge. It was at this time we enjoyed the most beautiful view of the dawn sun reflecting off the Honey Comb cliffs and Wolverine Cirque. "Stay golden Jonny." (I would have taken a picture but... see Toe-Side Bounce post below) As we appraoched to the ridge, the established skin-track was a nice sight. We skirted up the USA/Little Willow ridge to the BCC/Park City ridge, carefully avoiding the heavy wind-blown cornices on the north. We finally summited the 9930 ft. peak just to the west of Scotts Hill, ate some cinnamon buttery biscuits, (that I got a killer deal on at Alby's) made the transition, and dropped in. Fletch, on his inaugural split-board tour, set his board up goofy (or what ever the snowboard term is) so he was having a bit of a time keeping his tip up in the deep virgin snow. We floated down the settled, but very deep powder to the tree-line. Once in the trees, the grade mellowed a bit which made for some nice turns. Overall, a great morning. Despite the early rise, you couldn't pry the grin off Giles face. To work by 9:45.

Vert. 16oo ft. and 1.9 miles one way.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

12-Point Skin Track. February 18, 2009

With all the new snow (about 12 inches at around 4,700 ft) Mount Parrish (or 12-Point as I call it) was ready for the taking. I left the office around 12:30 pm (35 degrees (f)). Hit the switch-backs and never looked back. With the goal of increasing efficiency on my kick-turns, I looked for the steepest deepest lines. On top, around 6,200 ft., the snow was deep (24 inches) and soft. I made my transition as quick as possible (sub 1 minute), took a deep breath and started my descent. Snow conditions were as good as they have been all year for that location. I was back to the car, changed and at the office by 2:10. Nothing like bagging foothill pow half a mile from your office chair.

Vert. 1,500 ft., 1.7 miles one way.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Jazz v Grizz. February 17, 2009

Tuesday night Talin and I went to the Jazz v. Grizzlies game. RIP Larry. (Shout-out to Beez and Millcreek Plumbing for the tickets) We had a great time. Talin commented on the Bear, the Dancers and the tasty snacks. By half-time he was on my lap and fading fast. We had a real problem when we saw the cotton candy on the way out. Luckily, I had Batman waiting on the dvd in the car. Its fun to do things with just one kid. I think its good for them to have all the attention once in a while too.

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Toe-Side Bounce. February 16, 2009

On President's Day I just so lucked out to have a great mother-in-law and got to squeak in a free and clear resort day at Solitude. I felt a little twinge of guilt for not bringing L or T, but it soon melted away. Met at Dalt's house at 8:20, quick stop for snacks, on the mountain by 9:10. About 25 degrees (f). We did some super-speeders on the quad and then moved back to Milk Run and got some good footage of Dalt dropping a cliff-band. We hit Summit and got some pretty cool views of Wolverine. Shredded four or five on that side of the mountain and returned via a nice rip down Honeycomb. Ate some fried chicken and reeled off about 10 runs in about 120 minutes or so. The second to last proved to be one too many. As Dalt was getting some high speed footage, he took a wicked toe-side bounce off the soft pack . Diagnosis on the ribs not good, on the camera... about the same. Huge amount of vert and variable terrain covered, a great day.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

V-man Strikes Again! February 14, 2009

Last saturday morning Dalt and I kicked-up (XC) Millcreek Canyon with Macy and Banjo. We met at Dalt's house at 5:20, on the trial by 5:45. About 20 degrees (f). Very soft snow conditions. Snow started to fall quite heavily by about 6:30 (and kept up until about 10:00) . We were following moose tracks the last half mile, so we were a bit cautious. We made it to Alexander Basin by about 7:15. Headed down, nice soft snow. Quick and easy. 850 ft 2.5 miles one way.

Later, in the afternoon, L, T-dog and I went to the Duck park and farmed the pow to be had there. L was making perfect S-turns the whole way down... side-step up the hill, and plow the next row. T was straight and fast.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Argenta Slide Path. February 12, 2009.

Early morning pick-up, 4:35 at Dalt's house. Quick to pick-up Dustin, met Tom at the BCC p.a.r. Up 7.1 from the sign, quick river-cross, (about 7000 ft.) and skinning by 5:30ish. 19 degrees (f). Argenta slide path, truely unbelievable the destruction that slide caused. The first part was tough, super steep with switch-backs. Dustin and Tom, (herein reffered to as our Petzel Guides or PG) were like billy-goats-gruff up the hill. Switch-backs, effortless. Like the elf guy on Lord of the Rings, walking on top of the snow. Breaking trail a good portion of the way to boot. Dalt and myself however, not quite so. Got the heart rate up too fast too early. Up over the ridge and a few less switch-backs. About 7:30 (our cut-off time) we were facing the headwall with about 800-900 of vert. to go to the 10,400 ft. summit. To my great relief, as I came around the corner I saw Dalt and PG taking off their skins and switching to downhill. PG made sure beacons were on. Then dropped in, one by one. Bottomless Wasatch pow. The terrain was perfect, a nice 30-35 degree slope, trees if you want them and very few tracks. Got back to the car just before 8:00. With the flakes increasing, enjoyed the ride down the canyon.

Estimated: 2500 ft vert and 1.8 miles

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I am now going to blog.

The time has come, I am now going to blog.

The purpose: A medium to chronicle the many "big adventures" I embark upon. I hope you enjoy perusing.

Little A

Little A