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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Eldora Mountain Resort- #1 (Nederland, CO) 10/16/2012

I'll be doing quite a few posts on Eldora Ski Resort because I received a season pass on the cheap. Before this, I skied in West, VA (Snowshoe, which was actually pretty nice), North Carolina (App Ski Mountain) and Dubai (Ski Dubai indoor skiing). Those were not the most challenging of locations so it was ideal for learning. Eldora is where we are continuing along our learning curve. I plan on honing my skiing/boarding skills so next year I'm ready for some killer shredding next season at the big resorts on the western slope.

The photos for this post were taken on the first day of the season. Obviously, the snowfall isn't coming down in any great amount. I'm not sure if the snow season hasn't kicked in or what. The only available runs open for this first day were "International" and "Hornblower." I believe this was a 20" base.

So, when I first told people what I was doing for the day, I got a lot of "Eldora sucks" and this and that. To be honest though, I really did not care. Naomi and I got sick deals on our passes and we felt it was ideal for a couple of East Coasters just getting our ski boots wet, especially her.

Okay, so the actual review.... The staff was really friendly. No one treated us like assholes and everyone scanning our passes at the lifts were polite. The ski patrol was really nice... I mean, really, really nice. Naomi had a couple nasty yard sales (If you don't know what a "yard sale" is, click this 8-second video) and they were always there to help pick up poles, get her footing, or just ask if we were okay. Naomi is a beginner, so she probably shouldn't have been on these runs, but in her defense, she crept down the mountain at a safe speed and was not a danger to anyone else around.

The man-made snow and grooming isn't all that bad. I suppose if you're a pro and you've been tearing up slopes all across the Western US, then this wont be that special to you. However, if you're around Boulder or Northern Colorado this isn't that far a drive for you. I was told by a local that it is a perfect place to get up a little early on powder days and go tear it up between 9-noon.

Next trip will be strictly snowboarding.

Shoutout to and r/snowboarding

About 5 miles away. Dirty ass Subaru.

Looks better in person, obviously.

Naomi coming down "International"

Who needs carving skis? Straight-edge HEADs and boots from circa 1990. 
Going up lift photo 1

Going up lift photo 2

View from top of Challenge/Cannonball lifts when you get off and look right

Monday, November 19, 2012

Lory State Park- (Westridge, Howard, Mill Creek Link) 11/15/2012

Started out at green star (parking lot at very end of Lory) 1. Arthur's Rock Trail 3. Portion of Timber Trail 5. Westridge Trail. 11. Howard Trail (where I took my fall) 9. Mill Creek Link

Location: Lory State Park (Westridge trail via Arthur's Rock/Timber trail, then Howard and Mill Creek Link) Bellvue, CO. 
Date: 11/15/2012
How far we went: ?? Lost track due to injury (see below)**
How long it took us: About 2 or 3 hours depending on pace.
Elevation reached: ?? Lost track of this too
Weather: A little chilly, very sunny. 

Another sunny day in Colorado. I was curious to see what the Westridge trail was so I went up via Arthur's Rock and took a left at the sign designated for Timber trail and followed that to my destination. It's the only place (I believe) at Lory where you have an unobstructed view of Longs Peak and the Continental Divide. I was in too much of a hurry on the Howard Trail (#11 above) and I tripped and took a hard fall sliding down the trail. Both hands, both arms, and my right leg all had some good damage. Luckily, I had some alcohol based wipes in my bookbag that day and was able to clean my wounds (there was a LOT of dirt in my cuts/skin.) I took a second to get cleaned up then I calmly proceeded to the bottom and home where I was able to better deal with it. I wasn't hurt bad though.. Either way, awesome trail. Don't be surprised if you see some daredevil mountain bikers on Howard. Pretty awesome to see them in action. 

Where you need to go left if you come up Arthur's Rock Trail.

Walking along Timber trail.

Walking along Westridge, take a turn to your right and you see the view.....

.... The view that my camera cannot give justice to. 

View of Arthur's rock from Westridge

Only shot I got of Howard trail before I tripped


Horsetooth Mountain- Part I, 10/15/2012

Location: Horsetooth Rock (Horsetooth Rock Trail to Horsetooth Rock, then on Walthen to Spring Creek Trail, then to Horsetooth Falls trail back to parking lot.)
Date: 10/15/2012
How far we went: 6.88 miles
How long it took us: 3:02:52
Elevation reached: 7256
Weather: A little chilly, very sunny. Wind at the top of the rock. 

Basically you pay $5 and until noon the next day you have a permit to explore this beautiful area (within operating hours). Horsetooth Rock is the most recognizable landmark from Fort Collins and is easily accessible via the Horsetooth Rock Trail. Everything is clearly marked and you'll find your way to the top easily. Note: It takes about an hour to an hour and a half (depending on your pace) to go from parking lot to summit. This is important if you plan on catching a sunrise. It is only challenging when you get to the actual rock and takes some scrambling to reach the very top. It's not so hard that the average hiker/athlete/nimble person cannot do it with minimal effort, but people have lost their lives up here and I personally know a bunch of people who could not do it. Moving along on the Walthen and connecting with Spring Creek Trail. Its not much of a  sight if its not late Spring and the water is not flowing. Still worth a visit any time of year. Residents of Fort Collins are lucky to have this in their backyard.
Starting off

Coming to base of rock
Sitting on top of rock... Can you spot my new friend? 
Looking west towards continental divide
Looking South Towards Denver
East towards Fort Collins

North to Wyoming

Moving away from rock on Walthen trail
On to Spring Creek
Drips coming down Horsetooth Falls

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Twin Sisters Peaks Trail- Estes Park, CO

Location: Twin Sisters Peaks Trail
Date: 9/3/2012
How far we went: 7.66mi
How long it took us: 4:59:12 (Up & Back plus trail head)
Elevation reached: Started at 8940ft and got up to 11,335ft
Weather: Cool, nice. Once above treeline windy and cold, pretty damn cold at peak.

So we arrived there about 9:15am and found it pretty easily. All you have to remember is two things: It is right across from Lily Lake, and that you CAN park up the hill instead of the parking lot directly across from lake. It is a dirt road, so as long as there isn't a ton of rain (or obviously snow) I would think most vehicles could handle the incline. Right below is a map of what I'm talking about. the points between the two arrows are the stretch you can park at. And trust me, you will want to save your time and effort driving this instead of hauling your people and gear up this path. 

The first third of the trail is shaded under trees with some nice views. It's a constant incline which has 10-12 switchbacks before you start to feel more sunshine coming through to the trail. After you have climbed some in elevation, the trees become less dense and you know after awhile that you're coming to the end of the tree line. After enjoying some views from the upper half, you'll eventually round some corners and see the final part of the hike. With the wind breezy and mind blowing views in almost every direction, you'll feel as if you are near the summit but actually you have at least a mile to go over nothing but rocks. When you reach the solar electrical station at the top, you're almost there, so don't quit at that point! Anyways, the weather turned in the last 20 minutes of the hike and mother nature gave us a scare. Being from NC, we weren't used to mountains that much but we learned first hand that things can get nasty quick! Sleet and ice started to come down after being flanked by dark clouds. Not prepared for this we knew we needed to take our pictures and leave. (Better safe than sorry) So we did exactly that, took pictures, are a quick lunch then left for our decent.

All in all totally worth it. It was free and the trail goes through Rocky Mountain National Park as well as land maintained by the US Forest Service. My only complaint was the amount of people. Given it was labor day I should have expected it. Enjoy the pictures!

We saw our twin sister Subaru while parking at Twin Sisters Peaks! 
Start of Trail, last thing you'll see before entering.

Headin' up the trail


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Fishing tips from Savannah, GA

The following was written by Trail Mixxx contributor Joseph:

A Southern Kingfish, Croaker and Spot Fish caught at the Fort Pulaski bridge in Savannah, Ga.

The following are four fishing basics that will increase your opportunity to hook a fish before your first catch.

1. Always start with new hooks each time you go out. After a hard day of fishing, applying new bait, hooking fish and getting hung up on debris can easily dull you common steel fishing hook. You may only get ten bites in the time that you are fishing, so make them count! A sharp hook ensures that the hook will slide easily through the bait and up into the jaw of the fish with only the slightest amount of pressure.

2. Gear your tackle for the appropriate fish you are attempting to catch. Take notice of the necessary hook size, bait, and tackle you will need as well as the habitat where you will find your fish.

3. Know your knots. Some knots will reduce the strength of your line by more than half. The last thing you want once you hook that big one is for your knot to come untied or the line break because of a bad knot. There are many different knot types and ways to attach your tackle. Learn a few knots that will work for your purposes.

4. Attitude. This should be number one. Through my observations I have taken notice of something important; If you have a bad attitude while fishing and you get down that you are not catching anything or that you’re hungry, or that it’s hot, or that you’re bored you will be less likely to catch fish. Having a positive attitude will greatly affect your overall demeanor and will translate through your actions in your fishing! When others around you are catching fish, celebrate with them and tell yourself that the fish are biting. Stay positive and consistent in your efforts and you will make your catch!

By utilizing these basic tips you will instantly see improvement in your fishing game.

In future posts I will show you how professional crabbin' is done in Savannah as well as some awesome recipes to get the best flavor out of your fresh catch!