August 31, 2012

Anchorage Time

I began my 6 week stint in Anchorage (yes, that is a long time for me to be here) with some adventuring with Patrick for our recovery week after the glacier camp. I have been doing some mountain biking this summer at Kincaid Park where they recently put in a great network of single track that has some jumps and other features that I have been attempting, trying to get a little better at biking so I was really excited to bring Patrick there, but of course, 100 meters or so into the ride:

This guy jumped out of the bushes at me and was not very psyched about us or letting us pass. Alaska and Patrick don't get along so it always brings its best out for him. 

Me riding some steep switchbacks

Some of the features that I choose not to ride...

We took a break at the sand dunes

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Trying to will the sun to come out

Moose incident #2, momma and baby in the middle of the trail. We also had a moose incident #3, but didn't get a picture. The silly thing decided to lie down right next to the trail, luckily we was ok with us passing. 

More log features
 Next, we climbed McHugh Peak. It was actually sunny out so I was really excited to take Patrick on this hike and get a really good view of Turnagin Arm and the city, but of course as we were driving up to the trailhead a nice cloud came and sat right over the ridge we were planning hiking.
Clouds moving in quickly

We were fast enough to hike above the cloud layer and were welcomed to clear views over the arm. This is the tip of the peak that we had to climb up. 

Clear over the arm

Not so clear

The clouds move so fast up high

Mountains all over the place

Coming down

We made a little loop to look over the other side of the ridge and while we did, the clouds started to move out! Looking over Rabbit Creek

And finally, you can just see the city beneath the clouds

Enjoying the sun

We found some snow up there too! Patrick was amazed there was still snow.

And by the time we were down, the clouds were long gone!

I tried to download a program to make a panoramic photo, unfortunately, you have to pay for it so it left me a watermark, but you still get an idea of the awesome 360 degree view we had up top!

As Sadie and I headed out to rollerski, this little guy decided to join us for some breakfast. He's actually not that little at all and now I am once again a little scared to run around the University with little blackie here finding a new home on our trails. 
Patrick headed back to VT and I have moved into the next phase of training, intensity. So, for the next month, we will doing lots of hard intervals 3-4 times a week. This is the last phase of training before we move into race preparation so I am trying my best to stay focused and give it my all.

School also just began. I am half way to my teaching certificate and am learning all about teaching middle school this semester. The only experience I have had with middle school is my own so I am looking forward to working in a school and seeing what middle school is like from the teaching side of things.

And one last thing! My good friend Hannah who I went to Dartmouth with and who races on Patrick's team is an incredible artist and just did this fabulous painting of pigs. Because my grandfather, Bumps, always had pigs, I have grown a great affection for them and just love this painting. He also has a great collection of all things pig.

Check out Hannah's art blog: