Outdoor Retailer Winter 2015: Adventure Boldly

I’m an accidental gear-geek, unintentionally afflicted with a budget-burning desire to learn about, touch, and own the latest, greatest, and lightest the industry has to offer. Gear-geekyness is something that happens over time, and like a craft coffee addiction, it sneaks up without notice until one day the cost for a cup unicorn-infused java surpasses every other credit card charge for the month.  But by then it’s too late, and a latte isn’t a latte unless it’s made with mermaid kisses or pixie dust. The outdoor gear industry is overwhelming to say… Read More

Princess dresses and Mountaineers: Walk the Walk, See the See (part dos)

While we were in Munich, we decided that Austria was the next stop. I wanted to climb something Alp-y rather than stare longingly at the mountains as I had at Neuschwanstein. Throughout Oktoberfest, we asked a variety of our beer-table-buddies where we should go. Many of them recommended going to this sea or that sea; I chalked it up to the drunken musings of land-locked Oktoberfest goers. Two days after we arrived in Austria I realized they were saying see not sea (silly American). So, in Austria, a see is a lake. They tend to be named… Read More

Princesses Dresses and Mountaineers: Welcome to the Alps (part uno)

There is a land, that’s sort of far away – like a 12 hour plane flight to be exact – that has both princess dresses and mountain climbing. And they are both seemingly a normal part of life. And beer. So much beer. These exactly meet my criteria for a definitive “heaven on earth”. Recently, Justin (husband) and I went to Munich for Oktoberfest and to see our friend Chris. We “planned” the trip on a whim while sitting on a different friend’s couch drinking beers one night. I use quotes because planned… Read More

When waterfalls are statues, hobbit dance at your own risk (read: Timberline Falls – exploring RMNP)

It is so tempting, but the warning is advisable. Newly frozen waterfalls inexplicably beg to be danced under – the glassy, clear ice folds a la melted Ring Pop; a window stage to the water flowing below. But the ice is thin in pockets, so barring a desire to reenact Titanic, dancing sometimes takes place next to said ice sculpture rather than beneath it. This past weekend I was in need of a little RMNP.  While I usually have a dearth of hiking buddies, I surprisingly had two friends join me (stoked because I’m afraid… Read More

Meet the Adam and Eve of my mountain spirit

My parents came for a visit last week. To paint a verbal picture of who they are would take, quite literally, forever. So I’ll just say this: I’m my mother’s physical doppelganger and voice mimc. I inherited my father’s determination (read: stubbornness), emotional distance, and minimalist personality. That doesn’t even begin to describe them, but its a start. My parents had me out on trail at (and they’ll correct me if I’m wrong) about age zero. While they may have moved me to the flat land of Florida at the ripe old age of four,… Read More

Moab Day 3: Canyonlands and Negro Bill Canyon Trail

As it turns out – cars need gas to run. It also turns out Canyonlands National Park is 527 square miles. Our third day in Moab didn’t go quite as planned. We set off from camp with about a quarter tank of gas and expecting to drive about 40 miles to do a bit of hiking. Little did I know that the trail I was hoping to do was nearly three hours from the park entrance. Can we chalk that up to a blonde moment?  Fortunately we were at the park in the early… Read More

Video: Discovering Arches and Canyon Lands

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery… I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.” ― Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar

Strong, my kindred sister

Far more than physical, strength is in the mind. It’s the ability to push past our own boundaries, demolish the walls that scream “no you can’t”, and do more than you ever thought possible.  I love this friend-sister and hope everyone has people in their lives who inspire them 🙂  ~m.

Moab: Day 2

I don’t think there’s anything quite as satisfying as waking up in a tent to the early morning wilderness. Don’t get me wrong – marshmallows, a decent burger and cider after a long hike, and petting fluffy things are all close runners up; but there’s something more to witnessing and existing in the dawn’s ambiance. Sometimes I think that if I’m still enough, I might actually be able to hear the earth breathe, to see the ripple of its pulse move through everything around me.  I think that’s why I dig solo hiking so much: my brain finally stops… Read More

Moab: Day 1

Every weekend should be a three-day weekend. Even though its only one more day, I feel like the amount of exploring is exponentially increased and time seems to slow down (in a good way). The Mister, a friend from Florida, Mountain Man, and I headed to Moab early Friday AM. Truthfully, I wanted to disappear into the hills here in CO, but having never experienced Utah beyond ski resorts, I was game for a new adventure.  Upon returning I have one word: holyshitsticksamazingmagicwonderland. There is a connection in that place – a draw… Read More