“My Favorite Places to Ski, Part 2” was to be the subject of this post.The weather has been so strange this year (I’ll save that rant forlater), that I pondered writing my favorite places to mountain bike instead. Then is started snowing again! So instead I’ll write about where I’ve skied and biked recently. Quite a year it is when you can do both in the same day!
Whistler, BC, Canada has long been a favorite place for me. Big alpine lines, impressive backcountry access, beyond-stellar views, big big big…the list goes on and on.
Since I’m a small town girl, I adore staying in Pemberton, BC instead of in the fancy Whistler resort. Only a half hour away, Pemberton’s lush valley is surrounded by animal, veggie and berry farms, with mountains like Mt. Curry rising 8,000 feet above. For food, don’t miss Mile One – burgers with local Pemby Beef that are to die for, especially with toppings like handmade goat cheese.
The Whistler/Blackcomb resort is so massive that finding a local guide is essential to link the goods together. They do offer free guided tours (check the map/grooming report/big boards for info) or just post on Facebook before heading there and find a friend or friend of friend to guide you. Unless you want to spend a lot of time on lifts or looking at vistas, choose either Whistler or Blackcomb to ski for any given day.
The backcountry is vast, and often requires a sled, but I’ve found plenty great stuff via skins as well. The Duffy is one of the local classic places to go tour. This video below is of Alaska, but it reminds me of the alpine terrain in that area: (more…)
Osprey Packs is a key partner in my KEEN Rippin Chix Mountain Bike Camps, shown here in Fruita at the Fat Tire Festival. Great event. Great riding, great people, great beer…
I could go on all day! While I could spend all my time off (which is almost none) riding, surfing, skiing and playing, I now teach these women’s camps almost year-round, and many times at least 2-4 days per week. It is rewarding beyond belief, and who doesn’t love giving back to the sports that give so much to our lives? I believe I would have almost zero confidence if I had not discovered skiing, biking and surfing. I LOVE them all.
Speaking of skiing, here I am in California testing the new Osprey Kode Ski Packs for 2014. Great pack, great photographer… but really too much snow to ski anything that was sufficiently steep (and also safe). Most of the time it is “one turn wonders” on the same run all day long, which is quite boring until you see the results (hopefully!!!!!).
I know that often folks mention they want this “testing” job, and how can they apply to become a tester. Firstly, I quit my job, flew to Alaska with some new credit cards, competed in the World Championships of Freeskiing, then asked TGR and MSP almost daily if they needed another athlete for filming, slept in depressing hotels eating junk food and whiskey, called my mom and hoped for the best. Perseverance, right?
In another lifetime, I would wish to be witty and funny. After a depressing day of sitting around waiting for the weather to clear, I went back to the hotel for a cat nap. I flopped on the bed, not realizing that there was a queen mattress on top of a twin box-spring, which left me on the floor before I could realize what had happened. Big bonus, under the bed had not been cleaned and I collected a recent issue of Hustler. Luckily, nothing else more personal!!!
OK – back to this blog and something more PG rated. Gareth at Osprey recently asked me to photograph what was in my pack:
Osprey Raven 6 w/Reservoir (100L)
Patagonia Traverse Jacket
Crank Brothers mini-pump w/gauge, Crank Brothers multi-tool 17
Solar flashlight w/hand crank backup, Juice multi-tool
Osprey tire levers, First aid tape and electrical tape, zip ties, Clif Shot Blocks, Elemental Herbs sunscreen, all-good goop and all-good lips
Missing: Map and guide book, compass.
So, those who know me from my youth, I’m the chubby-dorky-math-geek. I’m going to skip the photo, as I’m still sensitive. One of my biggest fears was biking down stairs, so this is a skill that I now teach as much as possible. This video below is from the Red Rocks Rendezvous with Osprey this spring:
Ok, I know many of you are out there with me wanting MORE SPRING WEATHER. If there is dust in the snow, I would rather be biking, surfing, rafting, gardening… blah blah blah. Speaking of growing food, I’ve got to go fix the backpack sprayer so we can treat the peach trees with very very very diluted neem oil (aphids and leaf curl). I’m not very good at the pest end of chemical-free growing, but I’m learning! The hay fields got their first cut yesterday, summer here we come!
It’s always hard to write about rock climbing when you are ripping powder in a new bowl, or to write about skiing when you are latticing hand jams up granite. This year, I put myself on spring break to do both activities, type about neither, and then come home to the poodle and the computer.
I’ve spent countless season shifts in Red Rocks. For the past fifteen years it’s been the place to either jump-start or wrap up the year’s era of rock climbing. Spring has always been my favorite time. It’s when the green grass pokes through the sandy soil and softens the desert for the moment before you step on a barrel cactus. Spring is when the edges hurt your fingers because you’ve let them grow soft in your ice climbing gloves, when last year’s warm up is the biggest send of the current day, and when the sun feels exactly like thing you’ve been pining for all winter long.
Believe it or not, today is the first day of spring. Our friends at Adventure Journal kicked it off with 5 Reasons to Celebrate Spring. Just a few reasons to count your blessings and celebrate the season…
How many pieces of bacon can you fit in your backpack? Yeah, we’ve always wondered that too… with March in full swing, we’re definitely starting to think about our spring and summer backpacking trips, and we’re loving REI’s fun, new infographic on the subject.
Spring might be here, but is it actually time to take your fenders off yet? Here’s a flow chart to help figure it out. Obviously a little more applicable to our dear friends in rainy ole Portland, Oregon.
Thanks to Sweetpea Bicycles for this little gem.
Every Wednesday on Ditch Your Car we’ll be bringing you just another reason to spend more time on two wheels. Be it a photo, a statistic or an inspirational video, we want to keep reminding you about why riding is great!
Unless you’ve been living in a deep, dark cave… You may have noticed that there is a lot of cool stuff going on out there. So, we thought it was high-time we started rounding up some of our faves each Friday. Every month, we’ll be choosing a theme that fits with the Osprey lifestyle. This month we’re devoting it to all things spring: celebrating sunshine, getting out on late afternoon trail runs and reminding ourselves that summer is just around the corner. Welcome to the Osprey Friday Round-Up!
After a cold, grey, rainy, wet, snowy winter we couldn’t be more excited about the prospect of spring weather. Finally some warmer weather and sunshine to ride, hike and climb in. This also means we’ve been obsessed with photos and videos that show any glimmer of sunshine. So here are some of this week’s favorites.
In conjunction with OutsideTelevision.com
It’s spring. It’s time to emerge from winter. It’s time, for me, to stop wearing long underwear. This is hard, because I have been wearing the same pair all winter long. One pair. It’s been easier this way. This wooly bottom/top combination has swathed me while I swung at ice in Montana, Wyoming, Ouray, Michigan, New Hampshire and Vail, throughout a dozen journeys to ice climb this winter.
But on Monday I am headed to a tropical island with daytime highs in the 90’s. I keep putting those long-underwear into my luggage, right by my second bikini, and keep taking them out. This—not the rope, quickdraws, or bolts—will be what gets me flagged as a suspicious suspect in customs. It’s time to move on.
I am a grudging participant in the multi-sport revolution. I live in Boulder, and my opposition is thus poorly chosen. Boulderites switch deftly between a morning ski, an afternoon mountain bike, and an evening climb of the flatiron by headlamp. Over the past six years of living here I have learned that I am good for a two-fer, but that the trifecta continues to allude me. It’s therefore time for new rules.
1: Rollerblading is a sport.
2. Hula hooping counts.
Work with me. Wait—hold on. I just hula hooped. It’s 7 am and I’ve already got one sport down.
I’ve always secretly thought that the tri-sport addicts were ostentatious athletes in need of showcasing their talents on a revolving basis. But now I’m starting to understand that we might add a sport to be bad at a sport. The good part about this rational is also that the more you do it, the more tired you are, and the more chances you thus have for mediocrity at more sports, and thus you have more and more motivation to get better.
This is why this spring, I am embracing the multi-sport lifestyle. In part I am doing this because I got too good at packing for ice climbing, and it seems that my clutch pair of long underwear are permanently forged in the shape of my body. Something needs to shake loose. So I will travel to sport climb and then come back and slide into the wool to go and ski in Canada’s Adamants when I return. I will change my cadence and see if I can keep up. Maybe this is why we have seasons—why the sun, wind and precipitation force us to make different decisions throughout the year. We can cheat the system by hopping on a plane and chasing the sameness in our lives. But eventually we will get a window seat and fly over snowy mountains when we’re pursuing summer’s permanence, or sunny beaches when we’re hot on winter’s tail. Eventually we will want to try our hand at it all. But to do this, we sometimes have to be willing to try more than one at a time.
I’m making the move, but maybe not how you’d expect. The long underwear are not island-bound. I’ve taken them out to make room for the hula-hoop. I’ve got climbing and hula-hooping, guaranteed in the next week. I just need my third sport. Right now, I’m betting on salsa dancing.
Read More at www.majkaburhardt.com