Travel Tuesday: From the Mountains to the City

Finally, a week of minimal driving + a whole bundle of people’ing! After our mountain summits last weekend our friends returned to the city + we headed deeper into the mountains. I’ll go on + on about how amazing the Colorado Rockies are, because they are. They all are. Except for the San Juans, they are better than amazing. The San Juans are fan-freaking-tastic! They’re my favorite…

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Rather than chase after mountain summits we wandered along the trails until we found some icy mountain lakes — a solid compromise, for sure! Over the past few years I’ve lost a bit of my summit hunger + keep finding ways to love whatever the mountains have to offer. This mindset gave me mountain lakes + true dirtbag baths, zero complaints! It would be a struggle to find any complaints about the rest of my week either…

Dates: August 1 – 7

Miles Driven: 838 [18,489 – 19,327]

States Explored: 2 [CO + UT]

Noteworthy Wildlife Spotted: moose + mountain goats on Mt Timp!

Nights of Van Life’ing: 3 in a van, 4 in a cot’ed tent

Showers Taken: lots, courtesy of the TETON Sports’ showroom shower!

People are Awesome: #hikerchat + #ORShow, all the socializing with internet strangers!

 Now, before I made it over to Salt Lake City for the Outdoor Retailer trade show I spent a few more days dragging my brother around the Colorado mountains. You’ve already seen the crazy that went down during our first week together — he summitted his first 14er — so your assumptions about our second week together are correct. We hiked. A lot.

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On Monday morning we headed up to the Ice Lake Basin in search of Ice Lake + Island Lake. I told Wayne to pack his towel…you know, just in case. Little did he know 97% of my desire to trek on up the the lakes was so I could jump in! The climb up to the top of Ice Lake Basin was no joke! Wayne’s little mountain adventure up to Mount Shavano a few days prior was catching up with him…the actual act of climbing up, up, up was not his favorite thing ever. His facial expressions told me so! Oh, but the lakes up top were worth it!

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When Tuesday morning rolled around I was up by 6am as usual. We had parked at the Blue Lakes trailhead + crawled into bed with two very different versions of what would happen the next morning…I was ready + raring to hike up to more lakes, Wayne shuffled when he wandered off to pee in the woods. We compromised. He slept in for me + I hiked up for photos to share with him. #siblingwin

We finished off our Colorado adventures with an afternoon soak in some hot springs + a meander into Black Canyon National Park [a national park I did not even know existed]. It was time to move on. Time to change out my beautiful mountain scenery for many miles through an enclosed showroom.

Lucky for my sanity the Outdoor Retailer show is all about outdoor gear…which means 90% of the people traveling to Salt Lake City to talk gear are also ambitious outdoorists themselves! This meant my mornings + evenings were filled with mountain adventures!

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We got a running start on Thursday with a climb up Mount Timpanogos, scooted along the Bonneville trail, hiked up to Twin Lakes + got some technical speed work in on the Lake Blanche Trail. For a week…that’s not a ton of roaming, but when you consider we easily walked 4-8 miles a day within the walls of the OR Show’s conference center I think we did pretty freaking awesome!

Every season the Outdoor Retailer show stresses me out. Most years I leave saying “never again” only to return with a giddy bounce in my step six months later…it’s a love-hate relationship, for sure. This year was different. I came in refreshed + jonesing to get some information on some technical gear for an upcoming adventure or two. Turns out that’s the perfect combination of awesome to get you through a stressful, exhausting OR Show!

Morel of the Story: Give yourself some down time to recuperate…your body, your brain, your friends + random strangers will thank you! Oh, and drink up all the caffeine, it makes socializing about 10x more fun. Forget booze, that just puts me to sleep…caffeine is where it’s at!

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The mountains were calling...and she went. While she pretends to avoid cliches this one is true! Heidi is a farm girl from the Midwest living a nomadic mountain girl life. When she isn't working in a myriad of jobs she's out on the trails with her running shoes, snowboard or tent...chasing down her version of adventure + life one day at a time.