Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Big in Bishop 2009

We left early Saturday morning. A last minute change of plans meant that Kelby Scott (groomsman) would be riding with us. As Kelby slept through most of the morning, Beth and I watched the desert landscape fly by at a new van/land speed record of 67 mph. The check engine light turned on and off the entire drive; what's the worst that could happen!
The weather in Bishop was great, blue skies and temps in the 70's.

The first couple of days were a little slow for us, getting used to climbing the tall technical boulders of the buttermilks. Early into the week we were back in the swing, Beth finished the ultra classic Ironman Traverse V4. I had a good list of ascents on wednesday completing a V6,V7, and a V8. Rest days were spent playing horseshoes, cribbage and ultimate frisbee at the park. Beth and I organized a texas hold'em tournament on thursday, and after searching the entire town for some poker chips we settled for ritz crackers, rice wafers and oreo's for betting. Resisting the temptation to eat the poker chips and concentrating on the game was a difficult task. The game ended with Kelby winning, and he was awarded a stay in a hotel room for the evening.

The trip ended well with many projects being ticked off the list. On our last day in bishop I finished the classic Soul Slinger an ascent that was quite surprising. After this trip we have now confirmed that the van will be a great permanent home for the months/years to come. We had a great time and can't wait until our life is like that all the time.

Until next time.. We're living the dream.

Friday, March 13, 2009

On the road again... just can't wait to get on the road again...

After the last few days of fixing van problems, we are finally packed up, the road atlas is open on the table, and we're hitting the road at 7:30 tomorrow morning.  We'll be heading to Bishop California, at the base of the Sierra Nevada for a week of bouldering.  The little town of Bishop is surrounded by heaps of boulders, from the beautiful golden granite of the Buttermilk Area, to the twin canyons strewn with volcanic tuff. We'll camp out among the sage- walking distance from the Buttermilks. The weather should be phenomenal, the climbing superb, and the company rowdy and fun. Spring Break, here we come!

My second favorite thing about Bishop is Schat's Bakery- an old-fashioned bakery that reminds me of the Poulsbo Bakery back home- but bigger. Full of amazing pastries, fresh loaves of bread, Scandinavian decorations.... An excellent way to start a day of hard bouldering!

In packing the van for this trip, Cody and I have come to a realization. When we move into the van after our wedding, we will have very limited space- we really cannot fit anything more than what we already have. This means that we will not be able to pack any wedding gifts- the traditional blender or set of China will have no place in the van. So, please, no presents but your presence at the wedding! When we eventually decide to settle down, perhaps we'll have a housewarming shower or something like that. But as of now, the van is at max capacity!

We're off to live the dream for the week amidst sunshine and perfect granite...

Thursday, March 5, 2009

X-Treme! X-Country!

The weather in Salt Lake has been decidedly spring-like the past week.  Blue skies, warm breezes, and then boom!  Six inches of fresh snow in one night!  Since climbing was out of the question, Cody and I decided to make lemonade, and go cross-country skiing up Mill Creek Canyon, just outside of Salt Lake.  We rented skis and boots from the local REI and headed out.  The sun was shining, and while the parking lot at the trail head looked crowded, but once we got on the trail, the crowds we were expecting dissipated.  

The trail was all up hill on the way in, and it took us about 2 hours to reach the 4.5 mile mark at the top of the canyon.  All our hard work was rewarded when we finally got to skim down  the gentle slopes.   Cody did have one impressive wipe-out after making it down a steep hill- he thought he was in the clear, but ended up cartwheeling, skis and poles flying everywhere.  The moment was completed when our friend, striped spandex man, who burned past us on the way up, zipped by while Cody was sprawled on the ground.  Wheeee!
Another great day living the dream!