If you’re lucky enough to be in the mountains, you’re lucky enough!

Monday, November 22, 2010


Beautiful sunshine and blue skies greeted us this morning although the gusty winds remained.  Steve blazed off to work and I set about to putzing around the house immersing myself in completely meaningless activities that included vaccuming, cleaning the bathrooms and kitchen, and de-cluttering the paper "pile" (where does all that paper stuff come from anyway???).  After mindlessly slaving away for an hour or so on the meaningless chores, I glanced out the window and noticed the azure blue skies were taking on a more gray hue.  Cloud cover was moving in.  Uh-oh.  Alarm set in as I snapped out of my "responsible person" stupor  -  what am I doing???  Lollygagging around and wasting a beautiful morning on mundane household chores - when did my PRIORITIES become so askew?  Who needs a clean house anyway? Aren't  clean houses a bit over rated?  It's time to hit the trail!

Not in the mood for a normal trail run, I headed off for a little change of pace - the Manitou Incline!  I love the climb up the Incline and the subsequent run down Barr Trail.  Steve isn't as big a fan as me so I am FORCED to SNEAK over on Mondays occasionally.  SNEAK is the operative word because Steve is not fond of me going there by myself as he is fearful of four-legged animals and two-legged animals 'getting me'.  I "forgot" (ahem) to call and inform him of my plan on the short drive over .  Oops, my bad.  I was thoughtful enough, however, to leave him a note on the kitchen counter, before I left, telling him how awesome he is, that I love him, and that BTW, I went to the Incline - just in case one of the species of animals did 'get me' - they would know the approximate vicinity to search for my whereabouts.   

Anyway, I found a nice parking spot and headed up to the start.  Rumors have been floating around the past few weeks of a 'gestapo' squad issuing citations to the hordes participating in the fun of trespassing climbing the Incline (parts of the Incline are privately and publicly owned).  There is ongoing work being done between the various landowners and managers to make climbing the Incline legal.  I had visions of being hauled kicking and screaming (ie: resisting arrest) down the mountain by the 'gestapo' squad and Steve getting a call from me, his sweet wife, incarcerated at our local pokey, pleading for a bailout.  Busted in more ways than one.......  My fears were quickly put to rest, though, as I caught up to a group of firemen from one of our local departments who were training on the Incline today (with big, weight vests and shirts boldly naming their department, I might add). There was comfort in knowing the fine company I was keeping in my choice of criminal mischief exercise and figured to be safe from being hauled in if I stayed close to them.  :-)

It was a good climb today.  My fastest time EVER was quite a few years ago, when I was in good bike shape - 32 minutes - fairly respectable.  I've come close to matching it but not quite.  Today I did it in 33 minutes, 30 seconds.  Very happy since I am coming back from a few down months.  I will get it, again, one of these days. 

Took the new camera to play with today - a Canon SD 960 Digital Elph.  Unfortunately, I didn't do it justice as I managed to wash out any color that was available on a mostly gray day.  Steve will be giving me his tips and tricks on focus and teaching me about the different settings. 
Eager to start the march upward
Expansive views from the top - one mile and 2000 feet elevation gain
Peering through the trees to Garden of the Gods

Snow dusted switchback on Barr Trail

Dilapidated flume near the trail
Old engine

It ended up a most excellent day.  I enjoy the peace and quiet solitude the trail affords.  It allows me to think about life and people.  I have quiet conversations with God (I should probably talk less and listen more!).  I ponder with a heart of gratitude the countless blessings that enrich my life daily from my wonderful husband to dear family and friends and all the 'stuff' that fills it in and makes it full and complete.  Life's not always perfect but it most often is good.  I am thankful, indeed.  Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Trails to everyone this week!


Here are a couple of 'Go Fast Up the Incline' songs that rev me up!  :-)


And if you need a dose of BIG TIME winter sports, go watch this video - This.Is.Sick:


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