Drove up to Aspen Friday night to surprise Melissa. She had no idea that I was coming up until she called and I was in Breckenridge. Definitely surprised her and we had a great weekend. Basically just figured that if I hung out here in the Springs all that I would do on Friday night would be sit around, eat junk food and watch movies. Basically just wasted time so I might as well do something useful and drive to Aspen and see Melissa instead. I applied the same theory to Sunday night because that's all I would be doing too if I hung out here. And besides, I just didn't want to spend another weekend in Colorado Springs, hating it, and wishing I was somewhere else.
The driving situation has changed. Independence Pass is now closed for the season so I am taking the long way around. In order to bypass Denver and I-25 altogether, I took 24 to Hartsel then CO 9 to Frisco and caught 70 there. The long way around ads about 90 miles an another hour and half roughly. (It's actually ten mile longer taking I-25 to I-70 to Frisco.) So instead of it being 159 miles it is 248 and instead of taking 3:30 or so time wise it is now 4:45, one way.
Going up wasn't so bad as the conditions were good but driving home last night was a crash course/refresher in winter driving. Basically winter conditions from outside Aspen all the way to Hartsel. Vail pass was a nightmare with trucks stuck in the left lane, the right lane and sometimes just dead in the middle of the road. The Jeep did awesome. Hoosier Pass was even more fun as I was the only one driving it so nobody else had laid down tracks on the road. The roads finally cleared around Hartsel and all in all the weather cost me another hour of driving time which I guess isn't that bad considering how nasty it was.
I got in some solid runs in Aspen which was nice. 16 mile tempo run on Saturday followed up with a 19 mile grind of a run on Sunday. I swear that it feels like my internal carburetor is tuned to run better at 8K than at 6K. I can't explain it but that is one thing that I have noticed this fall. I seem to run a lot more efficiently up there than here in the Springs. Up there it seems like my heart rate, speed, and perceived effort all line up and are in sync. Here in the springs it feels as if one or the other is off, mostly the heart rate compared to speed it seems.
Going back up on Wednesday so this is a quick turnaround but it was worth it. I will also be up there for a full week like normal which will allow me time to settle in to being in one place for a few days. We are also going to a benefit up there on Friday night which will be fun.
Not sure how many more months of this commuting I have in me though, especially with the winter coming on. I am sure that I will do it as long as needed but I am becoming more and more interested in developing a plan B for getting out of here by next summer if need be.