Thursday, September 07, 2006

Isabelle Glacier

Here are some photos from a hike we did over the long weekend in the Indian Peaks Wilderness area, about 45 minutes from Boulder. The photo on the left is Isabelle Glacier, the other shows part of the Continental Divide in the background. The trail starts out in woods around 9000 feet or so and eventually goes up to Pawnee Pass (over the Continental Divide). Lake Isabelle is about a third of the way up and is a beautiful area so we stopped for lunch. The trail gets steep, rocky and twisty as it winds it's way up to treeline, flattens out into some nice tundra for a wee bit and provides a nice view of the glacier, then climbs for another 45-60 minutes up some steep rocky switchbacks to the pass. We stopped at the tundra since I've been up to the pass a couple of times already and I was thinking it was enough for my knee.

The hike took just under 4 hours (previous longest hike was 3 hours up in Telluride) and was a bit too ambitious for me but I lived and though my bad knee got sore coming down I don't seem to have done any serious damage. I've still got an area on my shin below my knee that's sore to the touch but who knows what that's from. Part of the problem was that I went on my first real trail run (18 mins. on a steepy steep trail plus 16 mins. on a flattish trail) on Sat. which produced some sore quads then went a short (1 hour or so) but hardish bike ride on a local trail on Sun. before the hike on Mon. At least the stupid car crash injuries weren't bugging me and haven't for a few weeks now. Maybe I've finally got through the worst of that. Despite all this whining it was a beautiful hike on a perfect sunny, blue sky day.

Tonight was my first night back at masters in the indoor pool. Kind of a bummer, I love to swim outside. Roger was coaching and he helped me a bit with my stroke. I'm taking too long to breathe which is causing me to rotate too much to one side and throwing off my balance. I know this already but I'm not sure how to fix it. I tried taking quick breaths but this just seemed to exhaust me. Something I'll have to keep working on I guess. Roger suggested thinking about keeping my stroke symmetrical and this helped a bit though the advice is somewhat vague for my engineer brains. He's trying to get me to be not so analytical about it but I can't help the way my brain works.

I started a new agility class last night with Sandy teaching again. She's a great teacher and I'm sure my handling's improved quite a bit because of her. We worked on how to walk and analyze a course, walking the course from the dog's perspective then the human's. I do this already but she went into quite a bit more detail about setting handling points and figuring out how to work your way from point to point, an interesting way to look at things.

I thought the course was too easy but I still managed to make a couple of mistakes. I often take easy sequences for granted and get sloppy with my handling causing Lo to run by obstacles in confusion. Must remember to stay focused, even on the easy bits.

Strum is now 17 months old and ready to start jump and weave training but when will I find the time? Poor pup, he's so fast and motivated and I was looking forward to training a new dog but there are so few hours in the day. I'm leaving for NADAC Championships in WY in 2 weeks! Where did the time go? I'm only entered in Jumpers, Tunnelers and the Team event, it's mostly for fun and practice since it's only 5 1/2 hours away but I'm not taking Strum and this will be another week or so of missed training for him. Wish I could figure out a way to work part time and still keep my benefits. Stupid need for health insurance ruining all my fun. Whoops, posting after 9 pm again, must stop rambling now.

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