A few days ago, our temps went from the 80's to the 60's in literally one day. Pretty typical for Flagstaff's change of seasons but always a shock, none the less. Not only did the temps drop (I heard that the snow level is 11,000 ft. today...) but the weather has gone all crazy with fantastic thunder and lightning storms, dime sized hail and even a tornado warning a few days ago (reminds me of last years record breaking tornado's in September...a repeat coming this year?). So...it seems that summer is over for us and it's time for fall, the wonderful colors that come with it and the coming of the prime season for Sedona and the Grand Canyon. ...I'll take it. All though it's always hard letting go of summer time in Flagstaff, the other seasons are just as good. There really isn't a bad season around here. Gotta love Flagstaff.
Activity wise, Susan's brother Leo was just in town for a couple weeks and what DIDN'T we do while he was here? It seemed like we went through a monster tick list of fun things and I had a great time. A few from the tick list:
-Long mountain bike ride on Humphreys and Dry Lake Hills
-Run on AZ Trail up on Humphreys
-Backpack in Grand Canyon
-Swim at Fossil Creek
-Climb spire in Sedona
...and while we were at work Leo went on his own and checked out tons more.
Note: Leo has a ton of awesome photos from his trip here so, when I get a hold of them, I'll do a big photo post of his visit.
I did get sick near the end of Leo's visit which was unfortunate but am now feeling better and moving forward with getting my body geared up for fall running and climbing adventures. I have a slight pain on the inside of my left knee after a bit of running so I am still holding back even though the rest of my body feels pretty darn good right now. I'm doing some exercises for it and trying to be careful. There are a lot of things that I would like to do in the coming months so trying to be smart and not make a little tweak turn into a big problem.
My fall running goal right now is to get in the the canyon as much as possible to check out trails and loops I haven't explored. Trails/Loops I'm interested in doing are Tanner Trail (and maybe Tanner, Escalante, New Hance Loop), Royal Arches Loop, Bass Trail (and more interesting to me Bass, Tonto, Boucher Loop) and do the Grandview, Tonto, S. Kaibab Loop to fix some cairns in a couple tricky sections (get it fixed up in case I were to go through there at night on a full Tonto push in the future...maybe spring?). I would also, of course, repeat other sections too, cuz the Grand Canyon is bad ass on any trail, but am most excited about continuing my exploration down there on the new stuff.
My fall/winter climbing plans aren't all that ambitious compared to my running plans. I want to climb here and there with Susan and hopefully go to new and old forgotten areas to climb. Climbing at new areas and new routes has always been my favorite part of climbing. Also, a more focused goal in my climbing will be to finish the 'Sedona Traverse' with Jeff this winter. We completed 5 pitches last winter (still need to clean a few holds and move a couple bolts on the first 5 pitches...a single day will fix that) and have about 7-9 more to go to finish. We have our work cut out for us but it is definitely reasonable to finish this winter as we got more and more efficient with every day on the wall last year. So, as long as we can get the equipment together (we are taking donations (no joke) as this is an extremely expensive endeavor...) and can get on the wall once every few weeks we should have a new 12-14 pitch sport climb traverse ready to go by spring. Fingers crossed.
Good by summer, hello fall!
Last Week Total: (first week running after Leadville) 10 miles (8 on AZ Trail on peaks and a couple jogging to work and home). Note: Inside of left knee felt a little sore after about 5 miles on AZ Trail but went away by the end. Started some basic exercises in response.