The ride to hell and back


Whoever said the road to hell is paved with good intentions was clearly a participant in Durango’s Quarter Horse bicycle race.

Every Memorial Day weekend, Durango hosts its annual series of cycling events, most notably the Iron Horse challenge, a 50 mile road race over two monstrous mountain passes pitting cyclists against a steam engine locomotive. The Quarter Horse is an “easier” challenge, taking riders halfway along the route for 25 miles to Durango Mountain Resort (also known as “Purgatory,” and for good reason).

The man-friend (who is a psycho cyclist) has been wanting to do the Iron Horse. I only recently got into cycling, having purchased a road bike for my birthday in November and maybe taking in a short ride every few weekends. But I like to challenge torment myself, so I signed up for the ride thinking it would be no big deal.

In hindsight, it wasn’t all that bad. Especially considering it was my first cycling event ever. But if you had asked me how I was feeling during the event, I would’ve probably given you a wicked side eye and maybe thrown my helmet at you.


What my move to Colorado has taught me about water

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Water is a huge issue in Colorado and the Western states. Over the last month, I’ve taken a free online course from Colorado University in Boulder (via Coursera) to learn a little more about the environment I now live in. For my capstone project, I opted to write a blog post detailing what I know and have learned and how my knowledge has shaped certain aspects of my lifestyle. There’s a lot more to it than I’ve included in this lengthy blurb, but hopefully my words inspire others to learn more about water issues and even make changes themselves.

I would love to hear your thoughts on my views on water (it’s definitely becoming a high interest of mine).


Wandering the desert

“Is this how the Israelites felt?”

I’d only been hiking for about an hour and a half on the red, rocky trails of Dominguez Canyon. It was a gorgeous Colorado day: a high of 70 with clear skies, just the break one could use after the cold winds of winter. But the midday sun gets hot enough to bake those canyon walls, making you feel like a loaf of bread swelling in the oven.

Dominguez Canyon is a cool little area which I only had a few hours to explore. A few weeks back, Berkely and I joined a group of new friends to explore the Big Dominguez Creek Trail. Unfortunately, I had limited time to explore (I just needed a quick hiking fix for the weekend) but what little I saw was incredible.

Two years in and I’m still so fascinated by the various environments that thrive in Colorado. The rock faces are fascinating and tell a tale of life thousands of years ago. I even saw my first Colorado lizard out here.

The trail has plenty of small rocks and sand, so be warned if you’re thinking of wearing knit-like sneakers to hike out here. The trail is mostly flat so it makes for a nice walking/wandering pace. Just be sure to bring plenty of water, especially in the warmer seasons. I’m told the desert canyons get brutal during the summer.

Two years in Colorado

One of the first photos I took after my move. It's still just as gorgeous now as it was then.

I can’t really say what I expected when I moved to Ouray, Colorado two years ago. All I knew was that this was an opportunity for me to make good on my childhood promise that I would one day leave the beaches I’ve always known. Looking back on my 24 months in the mountains, the one thing I will say is that I don’t regret it. I keep trying to think of a moment where I’ve been disappointed in my decision, but nothing comes to mind.

A “grown-up’s” first Snow Day

IMGP3188It was unusually bright out when I woke up at 6 o’clock this morning. Peering out my window, I didn’t see the sunrise creeping over the mountains like I usually do. Instead, it was the blinding white glow of snow as it swallowed the yard while more flakes and flurries scattered from the still-dark skies.

“That’s a lot of snow,” I thought to myself, not thinking it was a big deal.

After all, I’ve been in Colorado for two years now, I know what a lot of snow looks like… Wrong.

Because I’m particularly lazy about walking my dog when a single snow flake falls or the sun isn’t shining right, I shuffled my way to the door to let him out to do his business on his own. We were both greeted by a knee-deep wall of snow.

“That’s really a lot of snow.”