Archive for the 'Events' Category

Brotherly Visit

My brother Luke came to visit me a few weeks ago and we did quite a bit of climbing while he was here.  He visited to sample the best of Front Range climbing and I think we did a pretty good job of getting around and climbing a lot of different classic routes.  We began the day he flew into DIA with a trip to Eldorado Canyon and a jaunt up Wind Ridge and then the Bastille Crack, two classic routes at a moderate grade with short approaches.  The next day challenged our legs a bit more with ascents of the First and Third Flatirons, simulclimbing as much as possible.  We rounded out the climbing the next day with some sport climbing in Boulder Canyon at Avalon.

Wind Tower Descent Redgarden from the Bastille First Flatiron First Flatiron Lunch Ledge First Flatiron Runout

The ultimate goal of Luke’s trip was an ascent of the Petit Grepon, an alpine rock spire in Rocky Mountain National Park that is on the list of the 50 classic climbs of North America.  Looking at the weather and noticing that later in the visit the chances of rain increased, we made the decision to go for the climb early.  We got a nice alpine start and motored on up to Sky Pond, at the base of the Petit.  Making good time, we climbed well and topped out just after noon, then rappelled back down to the base of the climb.  On the last rappel, the skies opened up and the rain started.  I dove into a bivy cave while Luke pulled the ropes in the rain, and we waited out the storm in the small cave.

Loch Vale from the Petit Taylor Glacier from the Petit Looking For a Belay Snack Thatchtop from the Petit Step Carefully

Sky Pond from the Petit Top of the Petit Petit Grepon Summit Cramped Bivy

After the rains stopped, we were able to hike back to the car in dry conditions and celebrate the ascent at Ed’s Cantina.  The last weekend of Luke’s trip was spent driving to Steamboat, camping out there and taking a much-deserved soak in the Strawberry Hot Springs.  A short side trip to Breckenridge and we were on our way back home.  Super fun visit and a good amount of climbing made this a memorable trip.

Fall is in the Air

The past few weeks have significantly cooled off here in Colorado and more leaves have been changing color each day. My uncle came to visit and I had a good time showing him some of the local scenery and hikes in the area, especially Rocky Mountain National Park. One of the hikes we did took us up to Chasm Lake, one of the prettiest areas in the park. Just this past weekend, Monika and I drove to Aspen for a getaway and we were able to get some good pictures of the Maroon Bells with full fall colors.

Longs Peak from Chasm Lake Longs Peak and Columbine Falls Triplets at Chasm Lake Maroon Lake Maroon Bells Maroon Bells

Over the past month we’ve been able to get out with the kids and have a bit of fun. We’ve been hiking in Rocky Mountain National Park a few times, visiting Alberta Falls and Emerald Lake. On a hot day in August we took the boys to Lyons to tube the South St. Vrain river. Samuel and Benjamin both loved running the mild rapids in the whitewater park and floating down the river.

Hiking Break Above the Falls Tubing in Lyons Extreme Tubing! Improvised Backpack Long Lake

Samuel has started kindergarten and doing well, he’s active in his class and likes recess. Benjamin is growing every day and imitates everything his brother does. We took the kids to a local farm attraction in Longmont for the day that had a zip line. Samuel waited patiently in line for his turn, then jumped on and flew down the line. When Benjamin saw that his brother had a good time he wanted to do it, too.

Old Man Batman No Likey John Deere Zip Line Zip Line Ride 'em Cowboy

Summer Vacation

Our family wanted a little vacation this summer, preferably at the beach. We left Colorado last week and headed west, stopped in Arches National Park and Las Vegas, then ended up in San Diego. Las Vegas was hot, but comfortable as long as you stayed by the pool during the day and only ventured out at night. I lost a grand total of $4 in the Green Valley Ranch casino where we were staying. We visited the Hoover Dam, but didn’t stay long due to the 110+ temperatures. San Diego was more pleasant, and the sea breezes off the ocean help with the heat. The drive out and back was interesting, if it was cooler I would have stopped in Zion and scoped out some big walls!

Delicate Arch Eiffel Tower Replica Vegas, Baby Run Away! Pacific Beach Pier Gopher? La Jolla

Summer Activities

Summer is now in full swing in Colorado, time for cookouts, hiking, climbing and enjoying the warm temperatures! Where to begin? Mike Wysuph and I climbed four routes in Eldorado Canyon in a day: 13 pitches and a boulder problem to total 100 points (grade of the climb x number of pitches, 5.8 x 5 = 40 points). A 100 point day has been a goal of mine for a while, to me it represents a full day of climbing on great rock in a good setting with a fun partner. Recently I’ve been climbing more sport climbs in Boulder Canyon, Animal World and Tonnere Tower are two fun crags with a variety of good routes.

Samuel and Benjamin are growing up every day, they both love to go swimming and dive into the water with their swim goggles. Benjamin is especially fearless, Monika and I have to constantly keep an eye on him because he’s always diving underwater. As brothers, they alternate between war and peace, one moment they will be playing nicely and the next fighting over a shared toy. I finished building a loft bed for Samuel, and now Benjamin and Samuel share a room.

Indian Peaks from Gambit Gambit Arete I Don't Wanna Go! Chillin' New Sheriff in Town Erie Balloon Festival 2008


Winter has finally arrived here in Colorado. There have been a few storms on the Front Range but the majority of the snow has been in the high peaks and the San Juan mountains. Samuel and I did get to go to Copper last Friday to ski, most of the snow was man-made but the conditions were decent enough. On Thanksgiving day we took the boys up to Chautauqua Park in Boulder to go hiking in the snow. Yesterday I went with a group up to Rocky Mountain National Park to go ice climbing, we hiked in to Loch Vale Gorge, climbed a few ice routes and attempted a mixed line that ended up being pretty hard (M7+). The freezing temperatures had us retreating to Ed’s Cantina in Estes Park fairly quickly, but it was great to get out and climb some early season ice!

The Third First And Second Flatiron The Flatirons Mo' Flo' Than Go Free Strike Zone Free Strike Zone Mo' Flo' Than Go

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