Thursday, June 25, 2015

Got lungs?

Boy what a sea level land lubber am I.  Thought I might die today breathing at 6400 feet peddling uphill.

We came to Colorado this year with the wish to return leaner and with better cardio.  To wit, we rigged up a way to transport Carl's 3 wheel recumbent and headed northwest .
Hillbilly comes to mind....

Our first ride was only 4.5 miles around lake Estes.  Nearly died.  7500 feet elevation.  

Properly humbled we headed down to 4600 foot Fort Collins where we spent a week on their lovely trails along the poudre river and clear creek.  Much to love on their trails.
Duly armed with lungs a week old, we moved up 2000 feet to Carbondale. We twice biked the crystal valley which requires 200 feet of climb over 6 miles to get back to camp.  Then there are the rollers up and down along it.  Going down to town is awesome but the ride home is work.  It's just what the doctor ordered.  The valley is good enough to take by the spoonful.

I formed a new plan to ride uphill first and downhill last and we moved into the town of Carbondale on the Roaring Fork.  From our rv it is a short connect to the trail and 2 miles uphill into town where we have found every least desire can be met.  

Then we set out on the rio grande trail in the direction of aspen.  Our first ride was 20 miles .  Lots of work to get there and a blast to return.  The grade is the old rio grande rail line, slow and chugging, just like me.  Saw a rodeo arena along  the way and plan to attend the weekly rodeo while we are here.

Scenery is sweet and the roaring fork roars.

Two weeks later I am happy to report that we went uphill 13 miles several times and got stronger every time.  Twice we rode home in those July Colorado afternoon thundershowers and found out that a hot shower with clothes on works great for warming up and getting the mud off at the same time.

I'd stay in Carbondale forever except for reaching the two week limit at the city's Rv park.  Sunsets are awesome too.

Since we were officially out of Carbondale, we headed toward home, taking a humbling ride near Ouray and near Pagosa Springs, and finishing with our traditional ride to the Sand Dunes.  Same distance as in 2012.  Mission accomplished. 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


Welcome to my new iPhone
Since it has a panorama option I'll share some shots since I discovered it two days ago.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Fun for a cause

this is our second year to attend the MS 150 Texas Tour of Champions, thanks to loyal and generous donors.  it is a fun filled weekend for top fundraisers to celebrate the cause for which we raise all this money.

Hiking, biking and lots of parties.  Who needs more?
Well you get more.  you get the people involved in the movement.  that is my long time friend Margaret with the memorable hair on the front row and if you look hard you can find Carl.  After only two weekends I have a dozen good friends in this crowd.  Pretty awesome people with hearts all in the right place.  
and attitudes that say FUN!  Do it!  (Maybe orange is the new black? )

For Carl the weekend is about being with people who are dealing with a life that will get worse while his gets better.  so many in wheelchairs with fabulous attitudes who are top fundraisers for the cause. 

My physical challenge was to get active after a summer of surgically induced sofa time. I rode 16 and 12 miles at Fort Collins elevation and hiked in Horsetooth mountain reservoir where I saw three bears.
I hurt all over after three days of activity, but I would not have traded the experience for anything.  I was hiking behind Karla, who has MS, who said, I 'm all about finishing, not about how fast I get there. Just do it!!!
these are two of my hiking buds, Erin and Travis.  Erin was willing to ride 8 miles with me at my speed, and since she is a Rice grad, she was super before she did that.  Travis is a personal trainer who works with MS patients and he gave me a mid hike stretch that was over the top.  With help like this, I made it to the top of Horsetooth falls. 

More photos of my hiking buds Sandra and Dorie.

And Erin and Travis.

highlight?  on Saturday nite after dinner there was a great duo taking requests.  mine was Piano Man by Billy Joel.  when they played my request I jumped up and started dancing.  guess who got up and danced with me?  yep!  Carl got up and danced!   he even let go of his cane!  and Lisa, who is the lady photo'd in the wheelchair above, danced too.  pretty awesome!!!!!

Leaf me here forever

Never before have I been here for the aspens.  Where have I been all my life?
I saw them first on the million dollar highway.  Then more and more.  I'll just paste a few here.  
And a few more....
Is that enough?
I wish there were words, but nothing can describe the feeling of the fluttering gold.  

On the Rocky Mountain National Park switchbacks I coud reach out and touch them.  Felt like driving through Christmas lights.  I'll attempt to transfer and post a video soon.  Have not figured out the technique yet in the blogger ap.   

Spa me

On a road trip to recovery hot springs are essential.  Last road trip we had our hot springs book out every day with the intention of hitting as many as possible.  This time I just wanted to go to the most accessible ones for Carl and plan a very efficient route.  We have done just that, starting with Ojo Caliente, then Pagosa Springs to the funky Healing Waters, then Ouray.  

The winner, which we have returned to twice this trip, is Joyfal Journey, near Moffat, centered in the San Luis Valley between Salida and the Great Sand Dunes. 

The landscape is like New Mexico with its dramatic skies. In addition to amazing sunsets, they have a masseuse named Frannie that is among the best I have ever experienced.  

Pool temps are hot, hotter and hottest.  I like the hotter one.
This spa is built on the site of Mineral Springs, a hot springs destination that died when the railroad did.  The current owner developed the springs, a hotel and conference center and yurt camping and finally removed the deteriorated buildings from the previous century.

RV spots are bare bones, but with skies like this, who cares?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Roswell and a solar storm

After two years off the road Carl is finally mobile enough to attempt an rv trip.  Since I had two surgeries myself this summer it is a return to activity for me as well.  We are both giddy like kids with new drivers licenses.   No one could mistake us for geezers.  

I felt a bit uneasy when  I heard about the solar storm coming right before we hit Roswell New Mexico.  That is just too much space junk at once to take any chances.  Had to fashion a hat for Daisy to protect her.

There are aliens everywhere!

I'm not sure if the solar storm influenced the weather, but around Roswell we hit a rain storm and a double rainbow. 
if I don't post again, it's probably the electronics zapped by solar flares, but then again we might be with the aliens.  In case it is the latter, just know we had fun on the way there.

Monday, June 9, 2014

A change in plans

I The sun came up brilliantly on our last day at lake Garda and three hikers took off on a level 99 high ending up somewhere close to one of the lower realms of heaven. 
I and three others headed out to rent bikes to toddle along the shoreline and then inland upriver to the next town.  I rented a mountain bike with more gears than the free tourist info bikes but was somewhat limited by the hard seat and no gel pants to cushion me. But the day was lovely and the path idyllic and I cannot believe no pictures!!!!  

We returned for lunch when my phone rang.  We needed to check out a day early, a mess up by the owner.  As a result we are right on the water for the night.  Perfect.