Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Sunday, May 18th Training

Six mile hike on snow with 25lb pack, gaining 2100ft of elevation.

notes: work done by Steve and Tim (see below)

Sunday Tim and I went to climb the Dead Dog Couloir on Torrey's Peak (10 miles, 4500ft vertical from where we parked) as a training run for bigger routes later this spring/summer. We started at about 3:30am or so. The snow was crunchy and we didnt need the snowshoes we carried. About two miles into the hike I realized I forgot my sunglasses. My sunglasses. I have been climbing in Colorado for about five years now and have only done that once (and it was on a rock route, which isnt that big of a deal).

Tim immediately had his doubts to whether I could continue, being at a huge risk for snow blindness. Snow blindness can come quickly at that elevation with that much snow and sun. You basically lose vision and see pure white. It can subside after a few days but also can leave permanent damage to one's vision.

I continued on the approach until the sun rose and could tell he was right. I saw the line, which looked very fun and then turned back....dejected. Tim completed the route. I sat and wallowed, took a small nap and waited for Tim to return. Very depressing but, I looked at the positive: it was only a training route, I will NEVER forget my sunglasses again and I was able to get to the mountains (which I desperately needed) for the first time in months. I felt strong and stable for the duration of my attempt.

When I returned to the truck, I realized I didnt have the knee and hip stiffness I usually get from hiking far on unstable ground with a pack on. What wonders a religious joint mobility routine has had on me. I could tell the difference....night and day. A good day out, regardless of my idiocy in forgetting an essential piece of gear.

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