Wednesday, August 29, 2007

50 Years, 50 Miles

Mmmmmmmmmmm; Wasatch Ale How about a nice Polygamy Porter!
Hi all,
Well, this past week has been one of milestones. First off, on Friday I ascended to that lofty spot of turning 50! Now, some people might dread this age, but for me, I am darn happy and proud to have made it this far! (It also means I am ever closer to that magical day when I can retire from the FAA) Kathy threw me a nice party with friends, a fine barbeque, and I even received some lovely gifts. It was a great time, I think it was quite possibly the biggest birthday bash I have ever had. One of the bigger surprises of the day was that my friend, Gary, formerly of the USAF and the FAA, who worked with me in California several centuries ago, made the trip from Oklahoma to come and help me celebrate my big day. Now, that’s a best friend!

Gary and I, best friends, 70 years of air traffic control experience between us. I'm the short one!
On Saturday after the bash, Gary and I took a hike above Solitude Nordic Center in the Brighton Circle to Twin Lakes Reservoir. Starting at Solitude at 8,700 ft. we enjoyed a nice steep hike to around 10,000 ft. to Twin Lakes. It always amazes me how privileged we are here on the Wasatch front; Two hours after we left the house, we were at 10,000 ft. in the gorgeous mountains, enjoying the cool breeze and fantastic scenery. I can’t figure out why the mountain trails aren’t packed with people everyday.

Silver Lake, a nice XC track in the winter!

Twin Lakes Reservoir. elevation around 10,000 ft.
Monday, I took the traditional birthday ride, and rode my age. As usual, I rode to the island, where surprisingly the bison were in exactly the same location as last time, standing on the road! I also was treated with several groups of pronghorn antelope also standing on the road. This behavior was out of the norm as they are generally skittish and go dashing away whenever I come by on the bike.
Silly Prongies...

At Buffalo Point

Looking northeast, towards the Visitor's Center.
All in all it was a great day to be riding. I enjoyed the island so much that I really wasn’t interested in riding a “pace” ride and spent more time enjoying the scenery than I did concentrating on cadence or speed. That’s important sometimes, to not train but to enjoy; to relax, and to be able to appreciate being on the bike as the miles stroll by under me. I can train the next time!

Happy riding all.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Say Hello to Pastor Bob

A nice way to spend a Friday evening; Watching baseball with a good friend. Good baseball, good company. cold beer.
Can you see the ball? Look at the visitor's dugout, you can see the ball right in front of the fella with the black pants.

Hi all,
Just quick note to tell you about events of the past weekend, and to show you a new link in the tab list on the right; Meet Bob Kaylor, the pastor at Park City Community Church. We met Bob during our summer Chrysalis retreats over the past two weekends. PCCC was very gracious in hosting our retreats, and letting the Emmaus/Chrysalis community use the church. It is a lovely facility, in a lovely setting in the mountains of Park City.

PCCC has a lovely sanctuary

I was in Park City for a meeting at PCCC, got time for a ride up near the 2002 Winter Olympics Ski Jumping Venue.

This morning, I was browsing the PCCC website and came across Pastor Bob’s daily blog. Full of news and notes, and text from past sermons, the blog is an easy and enjoyable read. So much so, that I have added it to my tab list on the right. Enjoy it over morning coffee, in the middle of the day, or even at 3 AM when you can’t sleep.

One more note, Bob is an avid mountain biker, and also rides his bike to work. The fact that there is an access to the Mid Mountain MTB trail off the PCCC parking lot doesn’t hurt either! So, if Bob has slipped out of the office, you know where to look!

Thunderstorms are much more enjoyable when I am not at work! This is looking east, towards Parley's Canyon

Happy riding,

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Why I ride the Island

Hi all,
This morning I decided to go for an early sunrise ride in hopes of beating the Saturday traffic, and to be able to enjoy the sunrise out on the island. I left the house around 5:40 AM, still dark but the glow over the mountains told me it wouldn’t be dark for very long. It was lovely riding this morning; quiet, cool, peaceful, the bike running perfectly. The plan was to enjoy a 40-45 mile ride and be home before 9 AM. That way it wouldn’t be too hot, and I would avoid the forecasted south winds.

Out on the causeway I paused to take sunrise pictures. It helped me to remember why I ride out here with the birds, the peace, and the lack of traffic. It was so quiet!

The Pronghorns were not happy to see me!
After I reached the island, I headed southwest up the hill towards Buffalo Point. Riding to the point is beautiful, and allows me the chance to get a good climb in too. Of course today, I had other issues, mainly a 2000-pound road hazard. As I made it over the rise, and rode west, I encountered a small group of bison. They were grazing, and also slowly walking across the road. Now, I don’t know about you, but when something that big is in the way, I wait!

Hm, Decisions, Decisions...

I chose wisely!
As I completed my loop and headed back home, I was struck by why I ride out to the island all the time when there are plenty of other fine loops that I could ride. Heading east on Gentile, I rejoined the population. It was a normal Saturday morning with everyone moving about; big dual axle trucks, dozens of SUV’s crowding the shoulder on the two lane road, construction barriers, and of course diesel exhaust.

A normal ride on Gentile...

See my spot to ride?

Then, I remembered why.

See you down the road.