My Life as a Dog

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Month!

I'm not a fan of New Year's resolutions but I am a fan of resolutions. I was watching E! News the other day without paying too much attention but my ears perked up when one of the hosts talked how she doesn't do New Year's resolutions. Her resolutions were for just January. That struck a chord with me. I feel like I used to do the same kind of thing but haven't in quite a while. So I'm going to make a few January resolutions.

  1. Go to sleep with the TV off. I have gotten in a bad habit of going to sleep with the TV on and it runs all night. I think I would sleep better if I could break this habit.
  2. No chocolate Dunford donuts from Holiday Oil. I've already got one bad habit of getting my morning diet soda. Why did I have to make it two? I'm not going to attack soda this month but donuts are out.
  3. Do push-ups at home at least 5 times a week. I'm really good about going to the gym and lately I've been planking at home most days for about 2 minutes. That may not sound like a lot but trust me it is for me! Anyway, I've liked that its something that I can easily do from home. So now its time to do some push-ups at home.
  4. Read more. I used to read while in bed before I slept. But TV has ousted that habit. Now that TV is out I should have plenty of time to start reading again. Plus it will help me fill that void. Also I need to finish Mockingjay before the movie is out.
In doing resolutions, I don't want to sign up for too much. Not because there isn't lots that I would like to accomplish, but I think its important to choose things that are doable. If I am successful at my resolutions I am much more likely to keep going and choose new resolutions for the next month. So lets keep it simple!

Here's to an awesome January 2014!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Year in Review 2013

2013 has been another great year. Sure it's not quite over but it almost is. So it's a good time to look back over the year and remind myself as to how blessed I am. It's fun to see Facebook's "Year in Review" but I like to create one including those things that I want to remember most. Thanks to family and friends for being a part of my life. Each year seems to just gets better. Looking forward to an amazing 2014! See you there! :)

Places I Traveled To
Phoenix, Orlando, Zions, Bryce Canyon, Las Vegas, Peru, and Panama

Concerts I Went To
Vampire Weekend, The Waterboys, Kelly Clarkson & Carly Rae Jepsen at Stadium of Fire, and Wicked Divas

Hikes I Went On
Cecret Lake, Stewart Falls, Y Mountain, Rock Canyon, and Squaw Peak

Birthday Celebration with Great Friends

Races I Ran
Del Sol (Phoenix) Ragnar
Las Vegas Ragnar

New Addition to the Family
Drew - Great Nephew

A Few Photographs I Took

Shows I Saw 
Divas, Jersey Boys, Elf, Annie Get Your Gun, Rent, & Spring Awakening

Mom's 80th Birthday

Things I Experienced For The First Time
Japan Festival (SLC), Kimball Arts Festival (Park City) & Ethiopian Food

Peru / Panama 2013 - Panama City

Thursday, Sept 12

We started the day's tour of Panama by heading to the Panama Canal. It was interesting to learn a bit of the history and see just how massive it is. I didn't realize that there are actually two sets of locks and a lake in between. They are in the process of building new canals to help efficiency.

After the tour we were surprised to find ourselves at the LDS temple grounds in Panama City. Our tour guide, a former LDS bishop, didn't tell us that this was going to be part of the tour. The temple grounds were beautiful as they always are even though the weather had been a little gray. The temple was having some kind of work on it apparently as there were a bunch of guys up on the top of temple in bright yellow shirts messing up all my photos. ;)

Next was a visit to the old Panama City. It was very much how it seems New Orleans would be. The same kind of architecture. Very cool. They are in the middle of a big renovation project there. Some of the building are in horrible shape and yet there are people living in them. There were several buildings that were basically just walls with huge trees that had grown up in them. When the renovation is done it will be very cool.

That evening we spent on the rooftop of our hotel where the swimming pool was located. It provided an awesome view of the city and the sunset. It was our last night out of the country and we just enjoyed it relaxing.

Peru / Panama 2013 - Amazon to Panama

Wednesday, Sept 11

After breakfast, we pulled on our galoshes and headed back out for a jungle walk in the daylight. I expected that we might see a lot animals. I was clearly spoiled from my South Africa trip. We spotted the sloth that we had seen the previous night on a jungle walk and he was in pretty much the exact same spot. We did see lots of butterflies, which were incredibly difficult to take photographs of. There were lots of interesting plants and insects. But no lions, tigers, or bears! :(

After the jungle walk we boarded our boats with all our luggage and headed back to Iquitos. This time we were going up river and it definitely seemed to take a lot longer than it did traveling to the resort. In Iquitos we went to eat lunch at the same hotel we ate at when we arrived.

Then it was time to head to the airport and catch our plane to Panama City.

We arrived in Panama in the evening, met our local tour guide, boarded a bus, and headed to the hotel. I was surprised by Panama City. There were tons of sky scrapers. I'm not sure what I expected but it wasn't that. Reminded me a little of a mix between Dubai and Las Vegas. I was surprised that it appeared so wealthy.

We got to our the Victoria Hotel & Suites after a lot of slow traffic. For dinner we wandered down around the corner to a place called Manolo's with Alan, Melissa, Deanna, & Harry. It was interesting because it seemed that people in Panama had a harder time understanding English than the people in Peru. And yet the menus were in English and Spanish. It was also interesting to learn that they use USA currency. We had to be careful on getting change though because sometimes they would try and give you Balboas. Nobody wants those Balboas!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Peru / Panama 2013 - Amazon

Tuesday, Sept 10

After breakfast at the resort we got back on the boats and headed further down the Amazon to an Indian village. We went a little stroll through the forest seeing interesting plants and butterflies before we got to the natives. When we arrived we were greeted by this only woman wearing some kind of sarong and a fringe around her neck. She didn't speak English but welcomed us. Mainly it was the women of the tribe that were there and when we arrived many of them were walking around in just their sarongs. Apparently the men were off farming. All the men except for the chief. He was there to talk to us (and he didn't speak English either.) We gathered in the big building and he performed a ceremony were he went around and smeared orange paint on our cheeks as a symbols that we were friends. Next he demonstrated how he would use a blow dart gun. He demonstrated on a balloon that our tour guide had. He then allowed anyone to try it out.I don't think there were many successful attempts. When the presentation was done we had the opportunity to purchase little trinkets that they had made. I purchase a few little items and gave a little girl some coins to take her photo.

We left the village and walked out back to the boats. We walked by other locals and saw how they lived. There were some kids with their pets: a few sloths and lizards. Several of our group took photos hold them. The tour guide was one of group to hold them and he later told us that the sloths were covered in tics. Eek! The kids were super cute and the sloths were pretty cool to see.

We got on the boats and headed farther down the Amazon to see the worlds largest lily pads. They were on the property of a man who is the most wealthy in the area. He also make moonshine. We were shown the press where sugar cane would be made into the moonshine. We were given the opportunity to sample it. I didn't. :)

After lunch back at the resort we headed out to spot pink dolphins and fish for piranhas. We spotted several pink dolphins but it was nearly impossible to photograph them because they would just surface in random spots. And as for piranhas, the boat I was in only caught catfish but the other boat caught a piranha. The catfish we tool back to the resort where they served it up for dinner.

We got back to the resort for dinner and then went on a night time jungle walk. It was kind of spooky but we all came back alive! Before bed we spent a little time in the pool. Pretty cool to be swimming in the middle of the rain forest.

Peru / Panama 2013 - Amazon Arrival

Monday, Sept 9

This was a day of travelling. We were supposed to get up early (which we did) and catch a flight to Iquitos. The weather was not cooperating and the flight was delayed a few hours which we spent at the airport. We eventually got on our plane and headed to our next destination. We landed in Iquitos at the smallest airport terminal I have ever seen. I believe that there were two gates. We squeezed the whole group into a tiny bus shown above and headed to a hotel where we would be served our lunch. The city is the largest city (I believe in the world) that has no roads that go to it. You can fly to it or boat to it up the Amazon. The city is full of rickshaws.

When it was time to get on the boats and head to our resort on the Amazon the rains started to pour. It is the rain forest after all. So again we spent a long time waiting for the rain to slow down enough that we could board the boats. Fortunately there was a nice structure that we could take shelter in rather than the packed bus. Eventually we got to board the boats and we were on the Amazon. It was a bit surreal to me. We traveled about an hour down the Amazon before we reached our destination. I was glad that towards the end of our trip we got to pull up the plastic windows because the rain had stopped.

By the time we reached our resort it was dark. We just ate dinner, explored a bit and headed to bed. The food that we ate on the Amazon was sooooo good. Probably the best from the trip. As we wondered around the resort on the walkways it was cool to hear the frogs going crazy. We spotted a few frogs and actually a few tarantulas as well. Honestly it had freaked us out a bit. Some people had frogs or other bugs in their bathrooms. We found out that the electricity would turn off at 11pm. That meant that the ceiling fans would stop then as well. That first night was a long one. I slept with just a sheet on me because it was so hot and humid. But I also was a little freaked out at what might be crawling over me. After seeing things in the daylight the next day I slept much better the other nights.

Peru / Panama 2013 - Lima

Remember how I went to Peru months ago? Well I had the best intentions of blogging all the details. Several months later and I have not finished. I created all these great collages of photos but never wrote the text. Well here is another attempt...

Sunday, Sept 8

While in Lima we checked out Huaca Lucllana shown in the collage above. It is located in the middle of Lima in the area known as Miraflores. The ruins date back to 200-700AD. They are mud and adobe. They are located right in the middle of several other large downtown buildings but haven't been excavated until relatively recently. We learned while there that it doesn't rain in Lima. I'm guessing that is why the ruins have survived so long. Otherwise it seem that they would have washed away.

Next we checked out the Plaza Mayor. Some kind of celebration or event was going on because the area was packed and there was plenty of police presence. The plaza is surround by all sorts of beautiful old architecture: the Government Palace, Cathedral of Lima, Archbishop's Palace of Lima, and the Palace of the Union.

From there we walked a short ways to  the Monastery of San Francisco. There we took a tour and even went into the catacombs where you are no allowed to take photos. Oops!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Vegas Ragnar 2013 Review

I had signed up for the Las Vegas Ragnar 2013 back in February of 2013. We had a committed van of 6. Well a lot can happen in 10 months. I ended up getting treated for a stress fracture in my left hip that required I not run for at least 2 months. In July I started back running but I tried to ramp up slowly so as to not end up with another stress fracture or something worse. For a few months I was just running for once a week and only 3 miles. By mid September I decided that if I was going to run a Ragnar in November I had better step up my game. I started running multiple times a week and worked my way up to running 5 miles at a time just a few times. So you can imagine that I wasn't super confident or overly prepared for this relay. Fortunately I was one of the runners with the shortest total distances. I was runner 3 in van 1. Here are the legs that I ran:

Leg 3 | 5.5 Miles | Moderate
My first leg went relatively well. I started around 11 AM and finished my first mile in 7 minutes. It helped that it was downhill and I had the adrenaline flowing. I passed several other runners and got passed a few times. Towards the the end I decided that it was time to finally pass this runner that I had kept playing leap-frog with. As I sped up and passed her I suddenly started feeling nauseous. This had never happened to me in a race and before I knew it was at the side of the road puking. I pulled myself together and finished my leg with what I considered to be a good time for me all considered. It took me 50:45 minutes to run 5.5 miles. That's almost an 9 minute mile. Oh and I did end up with a nice big blister on the pad of my left foot. You can see more details of my run on Nike+.

After our van completed legs 1-6, we decided to get something to eat for lunch. We went to Panera Bread since it was near the next exchange and we weren't going to have a ton of time. I ordered squash soup, half a turkey sandwich, an apple, and a cookie. As soon as I finished eating, I realized that I was not feeling well at all. I tried visiting the bathroom hoping that it would help. I also tried drinking more water to get hydrated. Finally I took some Advil. It kind of helped the headache but again I was feeling nauseous. We wondered around a few stores while waiting for our turn to run. I was still feeling sick when we moved on over to the actual exchange. By this time it was starting to get dark. I went with Cody, Kimi, and Kilee into REI next to the exchange. Again I tried the bathroom but this time when I finished I decided that I needed to throw up once again. This finally started to give the relief that I needed. I think that I must have had a touch of food poisoning. When we got back to the car, Braden, had gone and had his blisters treated at the first aid tent. I decided that I should do the same. Mine had not burst so the medic, put a little gel pack for cushion and some gauze on the pad of my foot and wrapped it loosely with tape. I'm so glad I did that because it totally save me from it getting bigger and bursting.

Leg 15 | 2.1 Miles | Easy
By the time my second leg was to begin it was pretty dark and cold. It was around 7 or 8 pm. This year I was prepared. The 2.1 mile run through this neighborhood went much better than I was expecting after eating lunch. The first hill felt much more uphill than I was expecting but now that I look at the map, I should have known. Maybe it was the fact that my first leg was very downhill that made this little climb feel bigger than it was. All in all I was glad I finished with an average of under 10 minute miles. That was my goal coming in to this. I ran 2.1 miles in 20:45 minutes. You can see more details of my run on Nike+.

Before we all had to run again, we went back to our super nice hotel on the strip for a shower and a little sleep. I think I got maybe 2 hours or so before it was time to get back up. But it was so worth it! Thanks to our friend Erik who hooked us up at Hilton Grand Vacations on The Strip. By 1:30 AM it was time to head out to the next exchange.

Leg 27 | 4.0 Miles | Moderate
By the time my third leg had come, I had lost all my adrenaline but I knew that this was it for me. I just had to finish this and then I was done! On my second leg, I think I had worn too many warm clothes. So on this leg I just wore my running tights, a t-shirt, and a long sleeve tech shirt but this time I added gloves. It was a good combo. Again I felt alright about my time. I ran 4.0 miles in 37:47 minutes with an average pace just under 10 minute miles. You can see more details of my run on Nike+.

When we handed off to the other van we headed back to the hotel again for showers and sleep. This time I actually got 3 or 4 hours sleep. This way we were able to show up to the finish line meeting the other half of our team looking all fresh and dewy for photos. Not too mention that we smelled a whole lot better. :)

I not only picked up my Las Vegas medal but I also earned a "Deuces Wild" medal because I had run another Ragnar (Del Sol) this year. Had I ran the Wasatch Back Ragnar as planned I would have picked up a third "Saints and Sinners" medal. :(

Our team placed 17th out of 338 in our division. We placed 36th out of 491 overall. Not too shabby!

Team: Yur Mom Runs Ragnar
Van 1: Bryant, Braden, Brian, Cody, Kilee, & Kimi
That night we had slept enough that we had energy to go out and have some fun. My buddy, Nate, and some friends were in Vegas for the night before they flew out to Oahu. We managed to get to hang out and see a show on The Strip thanks to Cody's connections.

Cody, Brian, Erin, Nate, & Lindsay


Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Peru / Panama 2013 - Machu Picchu

Saturday, Sept 7

We got up nice and early this morning, hopped on our bus, and rode out of town a ways to where we caught the train heading towards Machu Picchu, the main draw of the trip. The train was way nicer than I was imagining. When I went to board the train the guy pictured above said to me, "You're hot." I was a little taken back before I realized that I was wearing a tank top and shorts while he was fully dressed and wearing an overcoat too. Ah ha! Yes, I'm hot. :)

The ride to Machu Picchu was quite spectacular! The canyon was deep with tall mountains on both sides. We also were able to catch glimpses of the snow-capped Andes mountain range and the Urubamba River which we followed. During the ride our car attendants served us meals since we on the train for about 4 hours. Once we reached the town at the bottom of the mountain by Machu Picchu we got out and hopped on a bus that then went through a bunch of switch backs up  dirt road until we reached Machu Picchu. What surprised me most was that at the top there was a hotel and two restaurants. Granted the hotel was not large but still it was surprising. Our guides took us on a tour the ruins pointing out lots of interesting facts. Then it was time to get some lunch. We opted for the cafe over the buffet. I bought a Machu Picchu burger combo for only $18 USD. The big fountain Diet Coke with ice was so worth it! After lunch we were on our own for a few hours to explore. Ty, Bryant, and I joined our new-found friends, Alan and Melissa for a hike around Machu Picchu to the Inka Bridge. It wasn't a very long hike but the drop off along the trail was crazy. There wasn't any railing or anything. We signed in on a book saying that we were going on the hike. We heard that if you weren't back in a certain time that they would come looking for you. We couldn't actually get to the real "bridge" because they block off the trail. You can see it in the photos below. The best time to there was after the place started to clear out. We were towards the first of the groups to get up there and towards the last to get out. It was much easier to get photos without people in it. What could have made this better? Just having time to do more hiking. I would have like to hike over to the Sun Gate or even better to hike up Huayna Picchu, the mountain across from Machu Picchu with more ruins on it.

Later in the afternoon had to hop on the bus back down the mountain where we had a little time for shopping before we boarded the train and headed back to Cusco. On the train ride back we were again fed and provided with a "fashion show" trying to sell us alpaca goods. The part of our group who did the 4 day hike of the Inka trail to Machu Picchu joined us. I kind of wished that I had known that option before we went but actually I'm glad that I didn't do the hike because I would have missed out on so much of the other sights. After the train we hopped back on our bus and headed back to the hotel. What a day! I do have to say that Machu Picchu is much more spectacular than you can get from photos. I kept on taking photos in an attempt to show you better what its like but I still think I missed capturing it all.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Peru / Panama 2013 - Sacred Valley

Friday, Sept 6

This day we actually didn't have to get up at ridiculous hours. I'm sure it was still early but it felt like sleeping in. They really kept up hopping on these tours. This is not what I would call a "relaxing" vacation. The hotel in Cusco provided us a buffet breakfast every morning. After breakfast we loaded up on the bus and headed out to Awama Kancha, a llama farm. There they had all the different kinds of llamas. Most of them you could walk up to and feed. So of them would get a bit friendly. They were not shy. The also showed how they make the yarn and how they dye it from natural items. They also had several people there weaving the yarns into complex patterns. The children have learned to pose for the camera and there was a cute little girl in native dress that loved seeing her photo on camera. My favorite shot was of her wearing large sunglasses from a girl in our tour group. Before it was time to get on the bus again we stopped at a shop where we could purchase items that had been created there. I bought a table runner with symbols of their culture woven into the patterns.

We rode the bus through the countryside a bit until we reached a street market in Pisac. There were all the typical touristy items that we could purchase. We were told that haggling is customary and expected. Our tour guide demonstrated how it is done with lots of drama. We were surprised that that is pretty much the way it is. Ty was looking to buy a ring and was haggling with this girl who was maybe 10-12. She was good! She would shake her head as his offering price and "no, mi amigo." So dramatically! Of course they ended up settling on a price that both were happy with.

After shopping at the market we were taken to a place out in the countryside to eat lunch, buffet style. There were lots of local dishes to try. I should have taken better notes as to what I ate, I guess because I have already forgotten. I do remember that there was some purple corn pudding for dessert which everyone seemed to think was nasty. I didn't try it.

After lunch it was off to Ollantaytambo to see more Incan ruins and to climb the mountainside upon which they were built. Getting down the road to the ruins in our large bus was no small feat. The drivers are pretty amazing because when it would drive down some of the streets people would have to step into doorways to avoid getting hit. Crazy! It was fun to hike up the terraces but it also started to register that we were at a much higher altitude than we were used to. After checking out the ruin we were taken to a family's home in the village. Part of this family's house consisted of Incan ruins. They had about 20 guinea pigs (future meals) running around on the floor, skulls of their dead ancestors, and strange things hang from the ceiling and on the walls.

Then it was back to our hotel in Cusco for the night.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Peru / Panama 2013 - Cusco

Thursday, Sept 5

We spent the early morning flying from Lima to Cusco. No rest for these travelers. Once getting into Cusco, we were taken to the hotel, Eco Inn, where we were given coca tee to drink to help with the altitude change. Cusco is at 11,000 ft above sea level. I was having a headache and a little dizziness. But it was hard to tell if that was from a lack of sleep or from the altitude. I drank the tea anyway and took a few Advil.

While several in the group opted to take a nap at the hotel, we were a little too excited to do that. Plus I was hoping that I would sleep good that night by not taking a nap. We wondered down to the Av El Sol to the Plaza de Armas where there were several large cathedrals which made me feel like I was back in Italy. A few things that we noticed right away. First there were police everywhere! Almost every intersection had a police man or woman there. Also there were tons of dogs all just running around wild. They all seemed pretty tame and not aggressive. We were later told that they actually have owners and were not strays. But they obviously were not taken care of like dogs generally are in the USA. Our guide also told us that Cusco is one of the safest cities in the country. With all the police presence I can see why.

After exploring a bit we got hungry and headed back to eat at the restaurant in the hotel. I ordered Lomo Saltado which was delicious. It was then that I realized I had pretty much ordered the exact same thing in Orem at La Careta.

After lunch the tour group boarded the a bus and when out to ruins right next to Cusco. The ruins are called Saqsayhuaman but our tour guide kept calling them "sexy woman" which made it easier to remember their name. :) There were quite a few llamas running around at the ruins. And from the ruins we could look back down to Cusco. It was pretty breathtaking and this was just the beginning. As we were leaving the ruins there were lots of people selling their goods and people dressed in traditional clothing asking for a "propino" (tip) to pose for a photo. After Sexy Woman we went to a smaller ruin site called Q'enko.

After the ruins we headed back into town and back to the Plaza de Armas. Only this time we went in Quirkancha and the Cathedral of St. Domingo.

Peru / Panama 2013 - Travel to Peru

Wednesday, Sept 4

The first day of my adventure began at 2 am. That's right I said 2 am! I thought about just staying up but decided I should try to get a little sleep. I actually woke up 10 minutes before my alarm went off. I must have been a little excited. I needed to be up to Ty's house at 3:15 am. Ty's friend Tenielle got up just to go drop us off at the airport! Not to mention she had made her Magic Cookie Bars. They were indeed magic.

Our flight out of SLC Airport was around 5:30. We got to the airport before there was anyone there to check our bags and then we were to security right as they were opening up for the day. I had no idea that they ever shut down. 

We flew to LA where we had a 5 hour layover. Then a flight to Panama City. And from Panama City, Panama to Lima, Peru. During that flight there was a girl who was supposed to be sitting by the window but was snuggled up against me chatting the whole time. She didn't really speak English and I really don't speak Spanish but that didn't stop her. I think she might have been looking for a husband. :) At least it help the time go by. We arrived in Lima just after midnight.

By the time we got settled in our hotel, which was basically at the airport, it was around 2 am and we needed to get up early for a flight to Cusco, Peru. Eek! I guess 2.5 hours of sleep was better than nothing.

Sunday, September 01, 2013

Rock Canyon Trail to the Campgrounds

Another week. Another hike. I must have the hiking bug. I just feel the need to explore and be busy. Today I decided that I'd take a few hours and take the Rock Canyon Trail up to the Rock Canyon Campground (which to get to by car you go up Provo Canyon.) I've started this trail a few times. The first time was a few weeks ago and I only went up just over one mile. The second time was last week when I detoured up to Squaw Peak. This time I went all the way up to the campgrounds. It was just under 3 miles one way with a elevation climb of 1,665 feet. Not nearly the climb of hiking to Squaw Peak but it was good hike non the less. I finished it all under 2.5 hours. Once I passed the turn off for the Squaw Peak trail I ran into no other hikers. I didn't take my big camera this time. I just used my iPhone a lot. But this time I did remember to bring a big water bottle and that was a good thing. They have two drinking fountain along the trail. I've been to the first one before and drank from it. It's about a mile up the trail. But I had never been to the second one. When I got there this time, I found out that it wasn't working. So I'm glad I had my own. They probably had water at the campgrounds but I forgot to look. There was a bathroom up there but I didn't check it out either. I was surprised that I didn't see anyone up there camping. Fall is coming. I saw the signs. Before too long I'll have to hang up my hiking shoes and that makes me sad. So enjoy it while it lasts!

Here you can view my hiking trail on Nike+.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Impromptu Squaw Peak Trail Hike

It was Saturday afternoon and I was getting restless. I had no plans for the day. I had plenty that I probably should be doing but lately I feel the need to get out of the house. And with fall fast approaching I want to spend my time out and about while the weather is nice. So around 3:30 pm I thought I would go on a little hike and take my camera.

A few weeks ago I had explored a bit up Rock Canyon and wanted to go back. I thought this time I might just go up to the Rock Canyon Campground which I think is about 5.6 miles round trip. I knew that there are a few drinking fountains along he trail so I opted to just carry my camera. Plus the weather was overcast and a little cooler than it has been lately.

I started hiking and when I got to the Squaw Peak trail I decided to explore it a bit not really knowing how long the trail was or how far up it I would go. But the further I got up the trail the more I was determined to summit. Despite the weather being pretty nice, I was sweating like crazy and had no water to replenish. (Not a smart idea, I know.) But I was determined. About one mile from he summit I finally ran into some other hikers. That was a little comforting. They said I was about 30 minutes from the top and they were right. 

As I was right before the summit, I ran into a several guys from the Utah County Search and Rescue. One of them asked where my backpack was. Oops! :( I told him I didn't need the extra weight to haul up the hill. He said he hoped that they didn't need to come looking for me. 

Once I hit the summit, I had the place to myself. I can't believe that I had never done this hike. Okay, really I can believe that I never did the hike. I just can't believe that I had never really heard of it until a few weeks ago. And I didn't understand that Squaw Peak is not the same as Squaw Peak Overlook.

After enjoying the view and taking several selfies, I could hear the search and rescue guys coming up behind me yelling, "Bailey!" It was the same guy that chastised me for not having a backpack. Soon he was getting a response from several girls yelling. He asked me to help try and spot them. I was able to zero in on them with my camera. Then I showed him my photo to help him see where the girls were. You can see the girls in the last photo. I zoomed in a little more for the inset to show you them. The girls had gotten off trail and into an area that they no longer felt safe. They called one of their dads and search and rescue was sent out after them. Last I had heard, the search and rescue guys had gotten to the girls and next was just helping them get down. Anyway, it was nice that I got to be a little help.

The round trip took me 3:40 round trip. The total hike was 7.4 miles with an elevation gain of 2,700 feet. Click here to see the route and other data on Nike+.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Stewart Falls Hike

It's another weekend and another hike. It had been a few years since I had done the Stewart Falls hike up past Sundance. The debate was between Rock Canyon and Stewart Falls. Since I was bringing my friend Mike and I had never done the whole Rock Canyon hike I thought I better stick to one I knew what to expect. Not that Mike thought I knew what I was doing because when it was time to find the trail head I couldn't exactly remember where it was. Oops! I quickly regained his confidence after we spotted a sign on the trail.The weather was beautiful and the scenery was great. It was evident along the way though that fall is just around the corner. The trail is a lot of up and down hill both going and coming. I had kind of forgotten that. But it was pretty and there was lots of good conversation.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Rock Canyon Trail

After a weekend of being sick and pretty much stuck at home, I was super stir crazy. I got in my car and went for a drive. I ended up at Rock Canyon Trailhead. I had never done any hiking from there but I knew it was a popular spot. I got out of my car with my headphones and my sunglasses not sure what I would do. At first I wondered up the Bonneville Shoreline about a half mile which had an awesome view of the valley. After a while I got bored the trail and decided to head back to my car. When I got close to my car I decided instead to follow the trail up the canyon a bit instead. I only went up to where there was a water fountain which I believe is just over a mile. Then I decided o head back since I really hadn't planned on hiking. Next time I'm going to go up to the campground at least. It looked like a pretty interesting trail. And after doing a little research online I think I'd like to hike from Rock Canyon up to Squaw Peak.

Kimball Arts Festival - Park City

When my good friend, Andrea, asked if I'd like to go to the Kimball Park City Arts Festival I said, "Sure!" I had never been to the one in Park City and this year I missed the Salt Lake City Arts Festival because I was out of town. 

We made sure to get up there a little early and that paid off because for quite a while there were no crowds. We enjoyed the various booths and art. Oh and maybe a few dogs. Andrea got tired of me joking, "Oh Andrea, look, there's dog!" But of course that didn't stop me. She does love dogs! ;)

For lunch we stopped at one of my favorite Park City restaurants, Main Street Pizza & Noodle where we ordered way too much pizza. At least it was yummy!

After lunch is when the crowds really started to pour in. And that is also when we ran into my old high school classmate, Willie Holdman. He is this awesome landscape photographer and one day I hope to be like him. Well, I would settle for a lot less actually. Anyway, he has his studio n Park City also. So we spent a little time checking it out as well. 

Some of my favorites booths were: Willie Holdman (obviously!), Yardbirds, and Rewind Jewlery (see the image below.) There were lots of other interest booths and some that were well just kind of awkward. But hey its art and art is subjective. 

I bought nothing as always. Andrea on the other hand always limits herself to one purchase. She did good! :)