Rowerowa sztafeta, jakiej jeszcze nie było. Dookoła świata!

Millweek: Slogging is so in right now. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Jenn Vennon attemptsJenn Vennon attempts Slice of Death a new 5.12d a the Narrows, Carbondale, Colorado. Photo by Anders Engle Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news marcommarco: “ Nickymarcommarco: “ Nicky Dyal Ph Jim Thornburg ” Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Maybe someday I'll bMaybe someday I'll be this good - maybe
"I think I want to do Millwood this year."
"Oh? I was thinking this year I'd like to run it all in sections, maybe over the course of a couple weeks. Hardrock training."
"Oooohhhh I am coming. Why don't we do that in a week, and we could name it Millweek?!"
I was Barkley training, hiking up West Grandeur...again. Matty and I were chatting, and I was grasping at straws to figure out what I'd be psyched on to do after Barkley. We discussed the idea intermittently- pieces that would be fun to do, what it'd be like if Millweek became "a thing." (sidenote - Millwood 100M is a local line with 44000+ vertical gain! more about that here)
Millweek was tripurpose in theory: Hardrock training for Matty (as well as visiting beautiful and favorite places,) scouting and training for my Millwood 100M attempt, and the opportunity to showcase some of the most aesthetic and least traveled trails in the Wasatch. Matty posted on the Wasatch Mountain Wrangler page a vague draft of Millweek, and I created the event page. So it started.
What it ended becomingwas so much more than the scouting/training concept. New friendships were forged between prior strangers, funny jokes, lots of donuts, a new sense of understanding in the Wasatch. Fun. I learned new places, faces, and trails...and that there are a lot of suckers willing to wake up at 4am to wander around the Wasatch! All who came talked about wanting to do this again, on different courses(WahWeek anyone, parts of Wasatch 100M 3 weeks before the race as a peak training week?!) or just to explore less traveled places together. I will be less shy about posting group runs in the future now too!
Without further ado, Millweek 2016:
Millweek Day 1: Willow Lake->Solitude->Brighton->Honeycomb
3300 ft vert, 11 miles
Matty, Greg, Chelsea, Jason, Jon, Jennilyn, Nick, Jeremy, Sofia, Lin, Jeremy

This was the first morning! Without headlamps and with a few bites of donuts...we headed up the trail to willow lake. The group swelled and thinned on the climbs, regroup at the tops and at scenic points. We were able to glissade down the trail, whooping and hollering and laughing.
Millweek Day 2: Mill D S-> ancient Kessler->Argenta
3000 ft vert, 7.3 miles
Matty, Chelsea, Jennilyn, Kenzie, Tommy, Brian, Brandon, Dirk, Jon, Chris, Chris, Matt, Sam, Zac, Payton, Mike, Austin (I think there were 2 more...)
[caption id="attachment_878" align="alignnone" width="4032"] PC Austin B[/caption]

"ANCIENT TRAILS?! I think that just means we're lost....Can I use that?!" The jokes about the secret and ancient trails were incessant as we bushwacked and wandered behind Kessler proper. We joked about having a group that big (20 people?!) cut in a trail for the Millwood runners, and I left myself flagging tape to pull when I go for it later. We shwacked through water at the end, and we laughed about our "secret" trails.

Millweek Day 3: Porter Fork->Deso->Thayne's
3700 ft vert, 11 miles
Matty, Chelsea, Jen, Jennilyn, Bryce, Jason, Jeremy, Jeremiah, Robert
[caption id="attachment_882" align="alignnone" width="3264"] PC Chelsea Hathaway[/caption]

The secret ancient alien holes of the Wasatch (yeah, it's thing, people believe that...) somehow became associated with DONUTS. Donuts are now alien holes, or a-holes for short. We also discovered the fine art of "Kill-ian it" when someone is killing it, or actually just whenever they cut a switchback. The recognition that I wasn't going to run Millwood 100M, I was just gonna go for a little "Millwalk." A morning full of laughter.

Millweek Day 4: Alexander Basin->Gobblers->Bowman
4800 ft vert, 12 miles
Chris, Jason, Jennilyn, Kenzie, Jeremiah, Robert, Dirk, Amber, Jeremy
[caption id="attachment_888" align="alignnone" width="374"] PC Dirk B[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_889" align="alignnone" width="1340"] PC Kenzie B[/caption]

This day was harder than the days prior - more vert! And there were a few more dilemmas: a lost phone (hey so find my iPhone really works, even in the back country! it just may take a half hour), altitude sickness, and a couple little falls. The only day of ridge running during millweek and the only thing lost was Kenzie's phone. Which was found. We also had fun impersonating ourselves, each other, and other wranglers.
The most impressive thing about this morning was the help exchanged. The group really looked after each other - through snow crossings, ridges, food for an upset stomach, finding cell phones, pulling each other up when one fell down... it reminded me just how great our community is. The trail community really is full of framily and damn fine people.

Millweek Day 5: Neff's->Desolation
9 miles 3600 ft vert
Fletcher, Collin, Sofia, Jennilyn, Dirk, Robert, Justin, John

[caption id="attachment_894" align="alignnone" width="852"] PC John M[/caption]
[caption id="attachment_895" align="alignnone" width="851"] PC Justin D[/caption]

What a fun morning full of laughter, donuts, bacon, and chocolate milk! This group had wit and humor to spare. We bestoweth trail names upon each other, took staged photos, laughed a lot, and still got back to the car by 7:48! Dirk took his name "Neon Thunder" to the extreme and began "thundering" things... And now to crash into something is to "thunder it." A fun fun morning.
HUGE SHOUTOUT to all who came! And to Matty for touring and making sure I had directions dialed for the days he was gone. I met new friends I hope to keep running with, learned new lingo, trails, places, faces... I love the Wasatch - I've never been shy about that. But even more than the Wasatch mountains themselves, I love the people that frequent them. Thanks for acceptingme in, trail kids. :-)
The most difficult “race reports” to write are the ones that are the most meaningful. With Millwood 100, it is both meaningful and not a real race, so it is twice as hard to capture the experience as words on paper. But I shall try.
First off, what is the Millwood 100 Mile? Millwood is (and yet another) Jared Campbell line in the Wasatch. (More and more my life is becoming a WWJD event… except more of WWJDS—What Would Jared Do Slower.) Millwood highlights the entirety of the Wasatch—along it’s 100 mile route it takes you through several 10,000-11,000+ summits, ridges, lower/over-populated flat trails, beaver ponds, exposed foothills, places where trails no longer exists or bushwacks where the never were trails, scrambles, rarely visited forks and passes, etc. The bad, good, and incredible aspects of the wasatch are all highlighted in Millwood. The vertical gain is somewhere between 40-45,000 ft of ascent… with the same amount of descent. Prior to my Millwood finish there were 3 Millwood finishes to date: Jared Campbell (the line creator,) Erik Storheim (first finish,) and Matthew Van Horn (one of my BFFs…) The day I started Erik Storheim, Pete Stoughton, and Ryan Tockstein all also started an attempt for a Millwood 100 M finish. Route is here:

[caption id="attachment_915" align="alignnone" width="1280"] 2 miles in! 104 to![/caption]
I cannot help but try to find something altruistic about running. I am not sure why. I don’t have a lot of time—I am a single mother of two busy boys, I work two jobs, I gear test, I write, and still try to have some semblence of a social and normal life in addition to trying to train a decent amount. The ball gets dropped. Perhaps the altruistic notion is to justify the time spent running, but if justification is what is desired, running being a must rather than a want for me to just BE should be enough. That altruistic notion is, perhaps, just a part of who I am…seeking meaning in, well, everything.
Millwood 100 is no different. With the introduction of “Millweek,” a weeklong tour of parts of Millwood, I felt that the altruistic notion of Millwood 100 had been achieved. It united new people, friendships blossomed, knowledge of the Wasatch grew, people were inspired. I was drawn to Millwood because it taught me the lower Wasatch, the forks and trails I had previously never set foot on. Both of these things had been achieved prior to my Millwood attempt.
[caption id="attachment_916" align="alignnone" width="1280"] millweek fun up Neff's[/caption]
So, as the taper for Millwood began I struggled with motivation. Why bother? If all the good things that came from Millwood had already played out, why do it at all? This question was intensified by knowing Millwood is too difficult for me.
[caption id="attachment_917" align="alignnone" width="2810"] harry potter magic with Kenzie during Millweek[/caption]

My little motto of “such and such is tough but I am tougher” had worn thin after Millweek. I had tasted Millwood. I knew what was coming. I knew it was too much for me, and my confidence and commitment waned.
With that, a dear friend said to me, “it’s not pointless…because those mountains are a part of you, and there are parts of you on them.” That was all I needed, I guess. To remember that I do this because it is me, it is who I am, it is what I love, it is how I love.
So, at 9:00am on a Friday morning I am at the trailhead of Neff’s with Chelsea, painting my nails in a hurry and tucking her heavy little Buddha statue into my vest for luck while waiting for my spot tracker to pick up satellites. At 9:20, after one last hug and photo, I am off.
The route ascends Neff’s and comes down into Millcreek. I am flooded with Millweek memories, the bestowing of trail names, the donuts or “alien holes” at the trailhead below, the laughter. I love the Wasatch, not just for the mountains but for all the people who are a part of these mountains, too.

[caption id="attachment_919" align="alignnone" width="3264"] more millweek fun[/caption]
I have to poke around on pipeline to find a stashed water jug, which was (in)conveniently hidden behind a rock at a wedding luncheon…Oh hey guys! A quick refill and I was headed off onto the “Grandeur Fun Run,” which isn’t very fun. A new phenomenon started… I was dripping sweat. First from my elbows, then my hat, then from my vest, too. Then from my shorts… I’d never sweat like this before! Not even in the sauna for heat training! What was going on? Then my calves started twitching, dancing, like there were ghosts tap dancing inside of them. I tried to stretch, lay down with my feet above my head, calm my body down. Still my calves danced while my body created sweaty mud puddles below me.
This wasn’t in my race plan…
Soon I was laying down on Bambi hill, not even a dozen miles into Millwood, overheated, legs twitching uncontrollably, feeling faint and hot and unsure on what I wanted to do. A text message comes in from my friend Adriana, “Hey. You’re near my house. Want some ice or popsicles or anything?” The text was enough to make me decide to at least get to the base of West Grandeur, there would be ice and popsicles…I was sweating at a rate that made the water impossible to replace and I was so very thirsty…
[caption id="attachment_920" align="alignnone" width="1280"] selfie with the popsicle savior[/caption]
Seeing Adrianna and Matty gave me a huge lift. AV fed me pedialyte popsicles and Matty dumped two ice cold water bottles on my head. A hug and selfie with AV and I decided I better keep at it. At this point I figured I had nothing to lose—I don’t usually take many (or any) salt pills, but I couldn’t make forward progress with my legs reacting as they were. I took 4 salt pills to see what would happen, put on some Lady Jams music, and trudged up West Grandeur.
Even though she was off on her own adventure, I thought of the many “West Gangster” summits with Kalina I had done that year… at least 25 together. The temper tantrums, the white outs, the tears from laughter and pain we’d shared. It made me smile as I continued on… and my leg spasms went to twitches instead of dehabilitating cramps.
[caption id="attachment_921" align="alignnone" width="1072"] mt sneffels with Kalina post Millwood[/caption]
Back on Pipeline the spasms resumed so I took 4 more salt pills. Either I’d finish or I’d OD on salt pills, or who knows? Maybe both. I took the time to drink more water, refilled, and laid in the creek for a while, trying to cool my body.
On my way up Burch Hollow I found out that Paul Sharwell had schwacked on the ridge across from Mt Aire and was waiting for me up there. I asked for water (I wasn’t retaining any of the water I drank and was still sweating uncontrollably,) and I took several more salt pills. Paul assured me he had ice and food at the base, and being able to chat and visit was a huge lift. I didn’t expect him there! Yet without his food, ice, and water at the Elbow Fork trailhead I don’t think I would have made it up Terraces…
[caption id="attachment_922" align="alignnone" width="1280"] Chelsea and Jeremiah and Matty during millweek[/caption]
Then headed up to Porter Fork who should be there but Chelsea and Jeremiah, with my headlamp! I was behind splits and was worried the sun would set before I saw Jen who had my headlamp for the night. I took (even more…) salt pills and nuun tablets and Gatorade and continued on. I had developed a system where I’d flood my body with electrolytes, my leg spasms would subside to allow me to move forward for 45 minutes, then they’d return, and I’d repeat the process.
As the night cooled, eventually the spasms faded and I was able to run for the first time since Neff’s. I stopped all electrolyte consumption with the idea that perhaps my body was going to regulate itself now. Gratitude overwhelmed me. Jared Campbell sent me a text, congratulating me on summiting Gobblers, and I sent him a photo of the sunset. Ryan, Erik, and Pete had started running, and while Pete had dropped Ryan and Erik were still running on. There was a lot of hope.
[caption id="attachment_923" align="alignnone" width="3264"] the millwood sunset from Gobblers[/caption]
Jen and I saw a bobcat on our way to dog lake and enjoyed talking with her. We stopped in Millcreek and I re-braided my hair, changed socks, and ate. I felt, well, normal. Jen has been my trail mom for as long as I’ve been an ultrarunner, I look up to her as the solid being who doesn’t take any crap from me and keeps me on track—with running yes, but also with life. I’m so glad to have had her in my life these last few years. We ran well, and I tried to make up time. Jeremiah met us at the end of Bear Trap fork where he would be stepping in to pace me for a dozen miles and Jen would be heading home.

Jeremiah was a new friend, we met during Millweek. We shared a similar obscure sense of humor and I thought he’d be great fun to do the Days/Silver loop with. We chatted and laughed and mostly I stayed awake during my “witching hour” (3-4am where I want to fall apart, always.) I talked about my really rough year last year, and he let me know about an awful year in his life…soothing it is, to know that rough years fade into the overgrowth of life.
I knew that if I could get to Chelsea at Willow Lake in one piece that I would finish. Chelsea has become the yin to my yang…and all the other cheesey things one says about a best friend when they’ve never really had one before. I looked forward to the day ahead with her, even knowing physically I’d be miserable, the places would be, for her, the most aesthetic of the course. She would be strong when I was most weak.
[caption id="attachment_926" align="alignnone" width="1280"] celebrating our best friendiversary in powell pre millwood[/caption]

Near Wolverine my stomach went south and I struggled to keep calories in. I refused to eat for a few hours, thinking that not puking was better than eating and puking more and more. We had planned to meet various friends near Cecret Lake, and when those plans didn’t go through, we were in a situation without food and low on water with no promising situations for a resupply soon.
I sat at the Cecret Lake trailhead and said simply “I cannot summit Baldy unless I can eat something.” We watched a family hike down the trail. Lightbulb….! “Chelsea, look at all these parents! Parents with backpacks! Backpacks with snacks for their kids!” She told me she cared for me enough to beg for food for me…and thus began one of the most embarrassing trail experiences I’ve yet had—food begging on Cecret Lake trail!
The hikers we passed were so kind in offering all that they had (I really wanted chips, crackers, or fruit snacks… nothing else sounded palatable) and we were fortunate to find food I could eat to get up the mountain.
We looked around on Mt Baldy (after Chelsea asked a group of hikers to share their sandwiches with me, ha!) and she says to me, “Look at what you did! You did this!” to which I simply laughed. I did not do that, surely everyone could see that…!

[caption id="attachment_928" align="alignnone" width="2448"] PC Chelsea Hathaway[/caption]

On hidden peak, there was Paul again! With chicken soup, a slurpee (oh, I’d wanting that all day!!) and ice cold water. He had saved the day again, with the supplies Chelsea and I had been needing for many hours. I devoured the soup and thanked him profusely. He even thought to pack sunscreen, wipes, all of the useful things…
After running down from Hidden and up towards Cardiff, who should pull up but Paul again, now with all the supplies in his car and the offer to refill our ice water. We knew Bryce Astill had hidden a stash, but since we weren’t sure where it was, we were grateful to refill with Paul before heading up Cardiff. Three times Paul had saved Millwood.
Kessler was draining and Chelsea and I visited memory lane. I don’t know what mental state I was in, only that music was helpful and my mood had improved drastically once I was able to hold in calories. We lost time coming down Kessler because I was stubborn and would just take off… but we made it down and across the beaver ponds and out the cottonwood bush-trees.
[caption id="attachment_929" align="alignnone" width="2048"] a full fledged aid station![/caption]
There Ben Light and Cherri were waiting with supplies, along with Kenzie and, to my surprise, Bryce Astill. Since Bryce was returning to running from his near death bed it was a happy surprise that he was there to run some miles. Kenzie is another dear friend whom, over the last couple years, has been a beacon of sassy strength to me. I knew she’d be patient and push me.
The run up Mineral went well, until it didn’t. I was surprised by feeling great, until sleepiness hit and a Redbull didn’t settle well. Soon we were trying to figure out how to connect into Mill B South, sliding around on scree fields, and hanging out with our new friend the mountain lion who came over to say hey and see if Kenzie or I wanted to be dinner. Kenzie had a boulder and was screaming at me and the cat (both?) but it was my second night, mentally I had checked out a little, and I was just excited to hang out with the kitty for a bit. We had lost a lot of time up there, and I was getting frustrated with the time and my stomach. I threw up a few times coming down from Blanche, but at this point I knew I wasn’t going to quit regardless of what happened so I tried to keep a positive attitude and the mood light.
Down at the S-Curves there were many people waiting for myself and Ryan, as Erik had dropped long ago. It was so uplifting to see these friends! Kenzie insisted I eat (my licking a piece of frosting and drinking broth apparently wasn’t good enough for her) so a little sass and some snacks we were off… and then I crossed the street and threw most of it back up. It was going to be a great last 12 miles!
[caption id="attachment_930" align="alignnone" width="1200"] what a sour stomach looks like[/caption]
As we headed up Mill B North I was tired. I had started to hallucinate near Lake Blanche (I saw the most gorgeous glittery butterfly…) and as we trudged up Mill B every rock we passed had a face, and every face was looking at me. 20 or so faces later I didn’t like it at all, 50 faces and I felt crazy and afraid of the faces and they wouldn’t go away! Kenzie reassured me that this was perfectly normal…and I wanted to know where “normal” fit into Millwood! But when the ground seemed to sway underneath me I knew napping for a couple minutes would let me move better, and I was hoping it’d reset my stomach, too. 14 minutes later I popped up (I can’t sleep if I’m cold) and we continued on. I noticed on the tracking site Ryan had left the canyon…I worried a little, but there wasn’t anything for me to do but continue on. I felt alone and burdened in the sense that 4 people had started this, and by continuing on alone it was like I had to shoulder their hope, too.

My stomach wasn’t okay. I’d throw up, get up, wipe my mouth, and try to laugh a little while I looked at Kenzie and the I would say, “well, I guess I should run again, huh?” There wasn’t much I could beside try to make this as positive of an experience as I could. I felt bad that Kenzie was to be out there so long, that her injuries may limit her from doing something similar. How could I think about complaining about a sour stomach? I could continue on, with her gently there. As Stephen would say, I was one of the lucky ones…

I continued to see things, vans where there shouldn’t be, moose, places of rest. I avoided talking or looking at my hallucinations, my focus needed to be on puking less and running more. I held back tears over and over again as we got closer and closer to the finish. Millwood was too hard for me. Millwood was too hard for me. My life was too hard for me. It was all too hard for me. I understood this. What I didn’t understand, was why so many people would help…because where all these things were to hard for me alone, they were doable with others.
“Look at this! You did this…” No Chelsea. You did. Jen. Matty, Ben, Cherri, Kenzie, Bryce, Paul, random Cecret Lake families, Jared…YOU guys did this. Not me. I was just the vehicle, the body, the idea…
When we came down Thaynes… There was Chelsea. Kenzie and I ran in. I sobbed and the two joined in. Jared had driven to cell service to check on my spot tracker (I guess it had frozen) and came and gave me a hug soon after, too.

I don’t know what it is about Millwood that makes it so meaningful. It is the Wasatch in every way. It has the little exposed mountains, the higher summits, the overpopulated low trails, the forgotten trails that don’t exist. It has scrub oak and creek beds, it has scrambles and route finding, it has beaver ponds and ski resorts. It is the place that I have come to love and find a family and home in.
A HUGE thank you to all who helped make Millwood happen, or who came out to Millweek, or who supported others in their Millwood attempts. I couldn't have done it without you. It was too hard for me alone. I am so grateful to have gotten to draw the wasatch with my feet...My body wasn’t into it, but my heart sure was. One of the lucky ones, indeed. I get to join three others in completing one of the most challenging lines in the Wasatch with a time of 45:33.

Gear Used:
La sportiva Helios, La Sportiva Bushidos, Ultimate Direction Peter Bawkwin Adventure Vest, Black Diamond Z-Poles, Petzl Tikka RXP, Petzl Myo
Food Consumed:
30 salt pills, 8 Nuun tabs, 2 Gnarly Nutrition chocolate protein shakes, eggs, avocados, pink frosting in various forms, VFuel Cool Citrus gels, chicken soup, slurpees, and all sorts of random snackies. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Montblanc Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news my climber female crmy climber female crush kate rutherford
I imagine her
with a granite cliff underfoot
wisps of hair, her thousands of wings
reaching to paint the sky
keep me away from the edge she'd say
or I might fly off
and a breeze would take to heaven
her soft, sweet laughter
and she'd tell me sometimes
the rain doesn't stop at noon
the weatherman, that liar,
he would never hold fate.
our mountains sing
music only she can hear
and she walks on their ridges
carelessly kicking her steps
so I claw at the mountainside
desperate to see her
screeching, trapped between city and sky
oh, come to me, azrael.

poetry copyright Jennilyn Eaton
photo courtesy Craig Lloyd Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Nerves of steel; cliNerves of steel; climber Katie Lambert in some high exposure while climbing some of Colombia's lesser-known climbing zones. #LiveYourAdventure
My blog has moved!
Come visit me at
Thanks! Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news beerfield
This post was originally written for and published by
A cooler full of beer is practically a prerequisite for a good day of climbing or mountain biking. Now, that cooler can be stocked a little more responsibly.
Patagonia Provisions, in partnership with Hopworks Urban Brewery in Portland, Oregon, just announced the launch of Long Root Ale, a Northwest-style pale ale made with organic ingredients and the first foray into beer for the outdoor apparel giant.
Always a pioneer in repairing weak spots in the food chain system, Patagonia Provisions worked with The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas, to develop Kernza, a perennial grain used in Long Root Ale.
The grain is a pretty big breakthrough for organic regenerative agriculture thanks to its long roots and perennial growth, which allow the plant to thrive without pesticides. It also requires less water than conventional wheat, cuts down on erosion, and removes more carbon from the atmosphere than annual grains. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news meonjeep
“Beer holds a critical role in society and history. It is the center of many tables, uniting us with its common language,” notes Birgit Cameron, Senior Director of Patagonia Provisions in a press release. “All it takes is a small tweak in the way we make our beer to effect big change—we are hoping this message reaches the big brewers of the world.”
On to the taste: Long Root Ale is made with a blend of two-row barley and organic Northwest hops, “resulting in a beer with resinous, grapefruit aromas and flavor and a balanced maltiness.” Kernza gives the brew a little bit of spice and a dry, crisp finish. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news beersnightfall
“Good beer tastes even better when you know it’s been sourced and produced with sustainability in mind,” surfer and Patagonia ambassador Liz Clark, who lives on her sailboat with her cat, told Dirtbag Darling.
Pick up Long Root Ale in 16-ounce cans in Whole Foods Markets locations in California, Oregon, and Washington starting today. The brew will also be served on draft at both Hopworks locations.
Pairs well with Snap-T fleeces and chalky hands. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Photograph ClimbingPhotograph Climbing in Austria by Luka Tambača on 500px Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Polish photographerPolish photographer Michal Karcz (Michal Karcz) or simply Karezoid (Karezoid) creates a wonderful picture, combining photography and digital zhivopis.Kak he says, much of his work - a journey to places that do not exist, the place of his dreams and fantasies . Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Reaching thru the roReaching thru the roof on Drunkard's Delight, Gunks. Fun horizontal roof climbing goes at 5.7ish. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Roof cracks - Set anRoof cracks - Set and Climb, reach the top!
[caption width="650" id="attachment_617" align="alignleft"] Brandon Dase's #trailfie captures the joy of running on mountains again after months off from an injury, hitting the summit with the sun. Good Morning! :)! #gratitude #squaw[/caption]Everything around us is light. When our eyelids are open, light passes through the corneal lens and focuses on the retinas' photoreceptive cells. It’s a small miracle that those cells can then translate that light into neural impulses that are interpreted instantaneously by the brain into what we simply call sight. Some vistas almost seem like too much to glance away from, like too much light to absorb and interpret all at once. A newborn child. A hummingbird at a honeysuckle. A panorama of nature overwhelming in its breadth and detail. Still, we eventually have to look away and the vision is gone, but somehow remains imprinted in our brains as memories.
This world of trailrunning has no shortage of pictures online and in magazines: scenery, sweaty and salty runners, and even intricate details of nature. For various reasons, some runners would never carry a camera or take a #trailfie. For others, the camera is running gear. It’s part of the run because the run is part of his or her life, and those delicate brain imprints are not always recalled upon demand as time passes. As long as the medium is reliable, a picture is proof to your future self that you were there.
Recently my son and I joined a small group run/hike up a local mountain ridge. Led by Kendall, up we went, much more hiking than running, through hard-as-rock dirt, shin-bruising-ice-crusted snow, under gnarled cliff-edge-dwelling pine and juniper and mountain mahogany, and over wind-swept viewpoints. Scenes—or light—shone at me from every angle, from the icy expanses of the lake emerging in sunlight down to the tiny gray snake of road slithering up the very cleft of the canyon, to the big mountain sagebrush rooted in a limestone wall.
It wasn’t until one of my friends on the run, Matt Van Horn, later showed us his little video, that I realized something. We all were looking. All the time.
So I asked, and yes, we were all at least partially motivated to climb that mountain in order to see what we would see from that new place. Kendall had drawn the line up the ridge, and wanted to share it with friends. Sometimes I wonder why we look. What are we hoping to find on the run? Is it something we can take home with us to remind us of that one amazing view, that together time with family and friends? That we lived for a while on that trail, on that mountain? Trailrunning with others is more than sharing the sights; it’s sharing a vision with all of its individual interpretations, and as an essay’s prompt is to a release of words and ideas, a picture canopen the mind's album of memories and experiences.
Why do some take a camera? Is it to inspire others, express individual art, to increase appreciation for nature, increase gratitude to God, pique interest in botany and zoology and astronomy, improve Photoshop skills, or…something else? Why won’t others take a camera? Is it because of a lack of one or fear of breaking it, reluctance of becoming obnoxious to social media connections, wanting to concentrate solely on the sport (does a purist mix his passions?), lack of photographic skills or photogenic qualities, or…something else? Is there even a right answer?
[caption width="1200" id="attachment_618" align="aligncenter"] One view from a hike with my husband on the Mid Mountain Trail in Park City.[/caption]
[caption width="716" id="attachment_615" align="aligncenter"] Shh, it's Cecret Lake. I'd take a picture, too. PC: IGer @br1dger[/caption]
[caption width="960" id="attachment_616" align="aligncenter"] Perspectives. PC: IGer @nate.y[/caption] Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news sahsa coresahsa core Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Sierra Madre..
*please excuse the mess and errors while the site gets updated and cleaned. thanks!*