March 29, 2009

Lake Havasu

Last weekend, I traveled with the CU tri team to Lake Havasu. This lake (or reservoir to be more accurate) is on the Colorado River between Arizona and California, a 16-hr drive from Boulder if you are pulling a trailer full of bikes. We were not there to participate in the Spring Break activities going on around us. Rather we did the opposite by going to bed at 9 pm and limiting our beverage intake to water. The retired people who surrounded us with their motor homes at the campground partied much more than us. No, we are not bunch of boring triathletes, but were there to race.


My only picture from the trip: the sunset the night we arrived. This was taken near our campsite.

The Lake Havasu triathlon served as the Mountain Collegiate Conference championship. Schools from Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico participated as part of our regional competition and tune-up before Nationals. We had about 40 members of our team compete and took all the top awards. You can read about it here: http://www.coloradotriathlete.com/articles/09/2009_collegiate_mountain_championships.html

My two goals for the race were an olympic distance PR and a 10K PR. I accomplished both of these despite many sharp corners and steep climbs on the bike (usually together, as in steep downhill followed by a 90 degree turn) and hot temperatures on the run. Mostly, I was there for experience as I have only done one other race of this distance. But I am also super competitive and had to chase down all the girls ahead of me on the run. With the awesome encouragement from teammates and the added boost of racing 5000 ft lower than I train, I was able to finish first in the collegiate division.

Next up is Collegiate Nationals on April 18 in Lubbock, TX (also olympic distance). Our team is very determined to do well at this race. This leads my roommates to make fun of me for my current training insanity. But it should all pay off in 3 weeks.

March 27, 2009

Snow Day

I used the foot-and-a-half of snow we got in Boulder as an excuse not to go in to work today. At one point while working from home, I turned around, looked outside, and realized I had company.





The only way she could have gotten into our back yard is to jump a 6-foot fence.

March 24, 2009

Ski Racin'

For the last couple years, I have competed in two ski races per year. This year, they both fell on the same weekend.

Saturday was the company-sponsored Chen Cup, where geo-environmental engineering firms recruit as many ringers as possible to win the overall competition. The event was held up at Eldora, where it was about 60 degrees and beautiful for the entire day. I was unable to defend my title of "Tele Champ" from the previous year, but I came in second. I lost by about 1 second to a Colorado State Student who was heavily recruited by his fathers engineering firm (congrats Jesse!). I'll attribute that 1 second to the fact that I was wearing a very un-aerodynamic kilt until someone can prove me wrong.


Race attire


Kilt lunges

I also competed in the cross-country race with much less success. I finished 6th, one place behind Jesse for the second time that day.


The Golder X-Country Crew Pre-race


Cruising down to the finish

The 8th Annual DoJoe Race was held at Eldora on Sunday. Keith, Sean, Rachel, and I all skied as fast as we could up the hill before peeling our skins and racing down the steepest run at the resort to the finish. Most participants are telemark skiers and costumes are mandatory (unlike the previous day when I was a bit out of place), making the focus shifted more towards having fun than going fast.

If he who has the most fun wins, I think I got 1st place! Speed wise, Keith placed 5th and I placed 13th, improving my time from the previous year by almost 5 minutes. I think the two beers I carried slowed me down a bit. Rachel won the women's telemark race and, rumor has it, set a course record in the process!

March 12, 2009

Coincidence?

I was driving to work this morning when a particular song came on the radio that seemed eerily appropriate. Mind you, I am currently working in New Mexico at a Potash Mine. The mine property covers many square miles, all of which have been thoroughly desecrated by mining activity. Also of interest, about 10 miles of a 25-mile long highway travels past much of the mine. I was on this stretch of highway when the song came on. I'm sure most of you are familiar with ACDC's "Highway to Hell".

March 08, 2009

Sunday Hike

Not too much exciting to report. Yesterday, Josh went skiing at Loveland with Walt (former CU Civil grad student) and Walt's fiancee, Nicky. Sounds like Josh had a great day jumping off cliffs. While he was off having fun skiing, I did a swim-bike-run time trial and then ate a lot of food.

Today, we both wanted to get out of the house, but didn't want to do anything too strenuous. Really Josh just wanted to try out his new hiking boots. So, we went for an easy hike (leaving right from our front porch, of course). We took pictures because otherwise we wouldn't have anything exciting to post on the blog for awhile.





This evening, Josh is heading off to New Mexico for work. Maybe he will post some pictures of the local polar bears when he gets there.

March 01, 2009

Skiing and Tunneling

I spent Saturday skiing with Sean and Sara off the East Portal trailhead. I'd never skied this particular area before, and found the terrain to be extremely featured and fun! Cliff bands of varying sizes were everywhere, and there was ample powder to land in.


In the Spring (only a few months from now) this gnar will become skiable!


Airborne Seanski


This line was really fun

Sara took a break on the second lap, and when Sean and I returned, she had mostly completed a tunnel, linking a large pit to a tree well. We proceeded to help her finish the tunnel before taking turns going back and forth like hamsters in a new cage toy.



Some skiers came by and falsely accused us of being architects. We were happy to correct them as we are, in fact, civil engineers.

video

To see all the photos from this trip, click here.