Friday, August 5, 2011

Summer, so far.

July came and went in a whirlwind!

The weather has been awesome, and I've been reacquainting myself with the outdoors. Last post I talked about the Glacier Challenge, and the team I was on placed 7th out of 10 all-female teams. I don't think I've ran that fast since high school, which wasn't incredible but I was proud of myself. It was a gorgeous day, and we all had a blast. I'm sad I won't get to do it next year, but maybe one day I'll come back and do the whole thing solo :)

I did my first backpacking trip in Glacier with a group of ladies to Akokala Lake.
It was super hot and buggy but it the hike was nice and mellow. One of the highlights was enjoying our boxed wine and playing Catch Phrase until our faces hurt from laughing.

I took the PT students up to Numa Ridge Lookout a couple weekends ago. Another hot and buggy hike, but with a great climb and beautiful views at the top.
How cool would it be to live up there all summer?

On a side note -- you know you live in a rural area when you drive an hour and a half to go hike in the wilderness and you run into at least 4 people you know.... Such is life in Whitefish!

I seem to have caught the race bug this summer, too. I agreed last-minute to do the Paddlethon in Kalispell last weekend with a friend. This entailed 3 miles of kayaking, 5.5 miles of mountain biking, and 4 miles of trail running. It was definitely tough, and it was a hot hot day, but somehow I managed to finish with a decent time and placed 7th out of 10 solo women. Apparently 7 is the magic number?
(we paused just long enough to take this photo before jumping directly into the lake)

I also just managed to fit in a Thursday Night Race League event yesterday on Big Mountain. Do you remember 2 years ago when I was racing almost every week? I did all beginner courses (1 lap) except for one week when I attempted sport class (2 laps) and finished DEAD LAST. I didn't get to race at all last year because I worked every Thursday, but this year I was bound and determined to attempt a sport class course again and finish BEFORE they started the awards ceremony.... So yesterday I dragged a friend up to do it with me, and low and behold I kicked a little bit of ass! I was by no means super fast, but I did tons better than I remembered ever doing the first year. I managed to pass a few people, I didn't walk any of the course, only fell once (toppled over trying to push up onto a lip and caught myself on a trail sign - it was pretty entertaining to watch I'm sure), and my lungs didn't feel like they were going to explode. I even placed second in my category and got a raffle prize, too. Success!!

This weekend I'm off to bike a section of Glacier Park with a couple of ladies, followed by camping in Many Glacier and hiking Ptarmigan Tunnel. Whew! Getting tired just thinking about it. Better get to bed...

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