wintering

Wintering

I am being reminded of the challenges of winter running. Glare ice under a thin layer of snow fluff that requires a short stride and careful steps. Snow packed into dirt, filling in the texture and making for slick descents. The curious duality of ice and goopy mud, side by side on narrow singletrack. Hand warmers shoved into my gloves to keep the backs of my hands from being stubbornly cold. It’s all just a little more work, a little

Mack on a trail run

My favorite gear for trail running (in the dark)

I am a bit of a gear nerd, and a bit of a perfectionist, and it is hard for me to settle for gear that isn’t pretty close to doing its job really well. These days there are so many options! Surely, the perfect pair of running tights exists. And the perfect mountain biking pack! When I worked in the outdoor industry I was always trying to find a way to finagle pro-deals with smaller, perhaps European, somewhat obscure companies

spooky trees

Spooked

You can’t trust your senses in these dark autumn mornings. The wind blows naked trees branches together and they sing like ghosts or maybe a small child in a place where there is no trail and should be no children. Dry leaves chase me down the trail like the sound of quick footsteps, piles of branches look like suspicious structures in the woods. A post with a box on it looks like a person standing very, very still and the

Trail to Van Cott

Keep it free!

There is a system of trails in the foothills near where I live. Really, I’m pretty sure there is just one official trail, but there are countless spurs, social trails, old double-tracks and jeep roads that lead up and over ridges, down steep gullies, traverse rocky hillsides and lead up and down the various peaks. Most of these are the most direct route, very steep, often loose and, if they get well used, sometimes closer to trenches than trails. The

Welcome Back to Shoulder Season

I’ve written before about shoulder season. We tend to think of it as spring and fall, when the days may be warm enough for short sleeves but the evenings are chilly enough for a puffy jacket. The leaves may be leafing or turning color, the days are getting noticeably longer or shorter. I enjoy the light in the fall and the sweetness of the heat while the sun is up. I’ve pulled out my headlamp and tights for morning runs.

condon motel

Five reasons why you might want to stay inside.

Spending 10 days on the road, camping, fishing, mountain biking and trail running might sound like a pretty fun vacation (and it is!!), but as I try not to scratch the bug bites on my arms, and scabs are starting to itch as scratches heal, I realize this style of vacation is not for everyone. Bugs. I was outside for most of 10 days and my arms, legs, hands, back, belly, head and ears are covered with an assortment of

Dandelions on Boulder Mountain

South Central Utah Adventure Extravaganza

We usually stay home on 3-day weekends to avoid the crowds, but this Memorial Day we were jonesing to sleep outside and figured we have a whole lot of experience finding solitude in Utah… How to Avoid Crowds on a Holiday Weekend Take a leisurely departure on Saturday morning. Most people funnel out of town on Friday afternoon, and where we live, this includes not just cars, but also RVs, trucks, and really big trucks pulling trailers, really big trailers,

balsam root on monday

Yay Monday!

If you work at a job, in an office, you know the general refrain about Mondays being the worst days. And if you had an especially excellent weekend doing your favorite things, it is rarely easy to get back to work. When you spend your weekend doing all of your favorite things, how long does it take for that glow-y feeling to wear off once you sit down at your desk on Monday morning? I’m sure it depends on the

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