Latest Goings On

Despite my intentions of keeping this thing more up to date, June was a bad month to have that happen. Bad only because we had (and have) such a fun-n-busy month that my little blurbs here had to take a back seat. But it's currently a little before 7:00 this morning and I have some time to jot down some details about what's been going on over the last couple of weeks.

- Birthday & camping: On the first weekend of the month, friends (some as far away as IL) joined us for a little camping outing in Rocky Mountain National Park to celebrate my 40th birthday. It was such a wonderful, relaxing and fun time just sitting around with snow covered peaks in the background, elk walking through the campsite and family and friends nearby... not a bad way to close out one's fourth decade. (Picture to the right: Sprague Lake and environs.)

- Railroads, running and rafting: A couple days after the camping, my parents came out to visit for several days. They've seen Boulder already, so we spent most of the time with them out in the mountains: we took a mine tour in Breckenridge, a scenic train ride out of Leadville, and the highlight (at least for me)... a whitewater rafting trip. If was the first time doing rafting for my parents (mid-70s) and Chloe (8) and it was a pretty good introduction to the activity. For one, the river we rode had some pretty good Class III rapids on it... nothing too nutsy, but definitely plenty enough bouncing around to get some walls of water splashing into the raft at times. As for the water, it was moving pretty good and was frigid... due to the high snowpack and therefore prolonged melt-off, the river water had a good pace going and was only about 34° F. Accordingly, wetsuits were donned by all. It was about a 70 minute float, and we all had a great time... my parents would consider doing it again (which is awesome!), though would want to try a longer trip on Class IIIs and in warmer water before considering some Class IVs.

Another reason we spent some time out in the mountains is that Peggy was signed up for a running race. For the months leading up to it, she had been training for the half-marathon option. During the last 2 weeks, though, she came down with some kind of cold or virus infection that left her really congested and she wasn't able to keep up with her training. All wasn't lost as the race organizers had a 10K option as well. Given she was still not 100% and not breathing the best, and over 4,000 feet higher in elevation that what she's used to, she opted to run that and was able to beat the time she set for herself (another "awesome!") (Pictures in this section, top to bottom: My Dad taking in the views during the train ride; KnPnC 900 feet underground in the Country Boy Mine; Peggy in the final steps of her 10K; and my Mom and Chloe prepping for some rafting.)

- Bike Racing and Fathers Day: And just this last weekend, we again found ourselves traveling to another part of the state so that I could take part in 3 days of bike racing. During this trip, we called Carbondale, CO home for a couple of nights so I could do a 12-mile time trial on Friday evening, a 45-minute criterium on Saturday, and 54-mile road race on Sunday. I won't go into details for each race; rather I finished near mid-pack for the TT and road race, and near last in the criterium (the reason being I had to avoid a crash on the closing laps and lost contact with the lead pack.) During our stay out there, we also visited the hot springs pool in Glenwood Springs and had a great time. The main pool is quite impressive: it's 405 feet long and 100 feet wide, contains 1,071,000 gallons of water, and is kept at about 90° F.

With Peggy still in "Summer of Peggy" mode and Chloe not having anything going on the following day, we decided to spend an extra night out there, but switched hotels, staying in Snowmass Village so we could relax from a busy weekend and have a Fathers Day dinner in nearby Aspen. The relaxing was great... we spend some time pool- and hottub-side by ourselves and enjoyed the quiet. Then we headed into Aspen for dinner at a restaurant that Peggy read about (and what she read about it was that Lance Armstrong frequents it, and has so recently.) As coincidence would have it, guess who was walking out as we were walking in? That brush with celebrity aside, it was a great night... the food was awesome, the service fantastic, and we spent a couple of hours together just laughing and having a great time. (Pictures in this section, top to bottom: Me before the start of the crit; Chloe and I at a wonderful Fathers Day dinner.)

Other Goings On...
- The Summer of Peggy now has an end date: July 24th. On the next day, she'll be an employee of Parexel, another pharmaceutical consulting company. She received an offer from them a couple of weeks ago. Not wanting to accept it as is (even though it was more than she expected) she counter-offered on three of the conditions and they were all approved! So, she has a little bit more than a month to work on her summer bucket list.
- Chloe completed a week of soccer camp that was led by the CU women's soccer team. It was fun to hear her talk about all of the skills her camp leaders had and she was SO excited to have the CU players sign her soccer ball.
- I know I've written a lot about the weather out here, but it still impresses us. After our stay in Snowmass Village, we were planning on doing some hiking at the nearby Maroon Bells. But a late-spring storm moved in, along with some fog and precipitation. The temperatures dropped quite a bit and we weren't prepared – or inclined – to walk around in such conditions so we drove home. The route we took took us over Independence Pass (12,095 ft), parts of which received a couple of inches of snow overnight, and some flurries were still coming down as we drove it. (Picture: some new-fallen snow on our way up and over Independence Pass.)

The Month of Fun isn't over.... in a few short days, we head to DisneyLand!


*** New Feature ***

I'm not sure how many will find this feature useful, but because I post about once every 10 days, it might be useful for those who like to read my occasional posts but aren't always sure when to visit the blog to see if anything is new.

Anywho, on the right side of this page you'll see a place where you can enter your email address (it's under the "Follow by Email" text.) By doing so, you'll receive an email notice every time I post something new. It's a great way to stay up-to-date with the blog without having to have a Google account to be a "blog follower."

I hope you find this new feature useful.