Thursday, December 25, 2014

A Special Kind Of Special

The Gear
My plan Tuesday morning was to get up at 5:45, get ready and then snowshoe up Aspen Mountain. I rolled over and checked the outside temperature on my phone and it was -2 Fahrenheit here in town so it had to be even colder up on top. I turned off the alarm, milled around the apartment for a little bit until it really got too late to leave to go.

Melissa is off this week and wanted to ski Tuesday morning so I asked if I could hitch a ride with her to Midnight Mine Road, which is off of Castle Creek Road. The temps had warmed up a bit and I wanted to do something a little different which was to ski with climbing skins up the road to the summit instead of going up the front face.

I have only been dabbling again with back country skiing the past few years. Nothing like I used to do when I was in my 20's when I was out most weekends and was doing a lot of hut trips. But I prefer it to area skiing if for nothing else for the solitude.

The trip on Tuesday I will have to say was one of the best days out on BC skis that I can really ever remember. I saw elk tracks, moose tracks, and even fox tracks along the road for a bit. After about mile three I was breaking trail as no snowmobiles had gone through there yet. It was quiet and pretty out.
Looking back from breaking trail.
The trip up was 5.3 miles with 3100 feet of gain. It was challenging. It took me 2:55 to get up to the Sundeck after I started and when I got there I was beat down tired. But happy. Very happy.

I went into the Sundeck and hung out a bit. Actually I devoured my granola bar and my Larabar and drank the water in my Nalgene bottle, well after I broke through ice cap that had strangely formed on top. I contemplated skiing down but I was too pooped and decided to just ride the Gondola down.

I get a kick out of riding the gondola and Tuesday was no different. I was riding down and watching the carnage on the slopes below me and to be honest, it just looked damned cold out. It all just looked miserable to be honest.

Then it hit me... I am a special kind of special, you can figure out what that means on your own. I bet by skiing three hours up a damned mountain alone and riding the gondola down afterwards that I had a better time than most people out there. Or I just had a better time because I just do things differently than most. I don't know.

Anyway you cut it, I had a great time. I think will take the same route tomorrow up. Today I went up the front side and it was fun but it only took 1:38.  I want more time out there I guess.

I have pretty much decided that I am going to race the America's Uphill on March 14 and train exclusively for it until the race. So for the next couple of weeks I want to go up the mountain every day before I start getting focused on the training. 


  1. America's Uphill looks like a great race-- too bad it's the same weekend as the Salida marathon. :(

    1. Yeah... I was kicking around doing Salida or not. If I had gotten into HR it more than likely would have been a go. As it is, it's too far of a drive to get over there and back just for that race. America's Uphill is on a venue that I can probably do pretty good on, if I train for it like I plan to. There won't be a lot of racing this year I don't think for me but I am pretty solid on registering for RRR100 again when it opens on the 10th of Jan.