"Let us go into the mountains and be happy." – Serge 

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spring-time gear

Published on May 14, 2010 by

Bicycle.
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Skis that convert into a snowboard, and ski crampons.
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Snowboard that converts into skis.
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Note: when the above picture was taken, Sazi dog was barking in his usual manner which seems to suggest that I ditch all my gear, take off my clothes, and run with the wind.

 
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Spring in Full Swing

Published on May 4, 2010 by

Spring 2010 is in full swing here in the AZ high country. Yesterday I went for a lunch-time mtb ride in shorts, and the day before that, we layed down fresh powder tracks on the Kachina Peaks!
Judy and Blair learned how to teleski this winter and they were looking good on the slopes.
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Last week, McKenna, Dara and I took a 1/2 day float on the Verde River. Dara shuttled the truck down river then bicycled back to us, while I inflated the ducky and McKenna played on the shore.
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For most of the float, McKenna just wanted to lean over the side and splash.
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Short break on a rocky beach.
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The backyard has become an epic safari for McKenna.
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I sure am getting into bike riding mode now… the glittergreen Coconino cycle is almost ready for riding – she has new paint, new wheels and a rebuilt fork….

 
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Quick Verde Paddle

Published on April 21, 2010 by

Why is a bike on my boat? So I could ride back and get Dr. M’s truck, drive back to the boat-takeout and get the crew. Usually folks take two cars and do the shuttle before the float.

 
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Tom’s Thumb

Published on April 6, 2010 by

The one time I summited Tom’s Thumb, was on January 28th, 1996. Murdock and I climbed the thumb via Treiber’s Deception route. Before our rappel off the top, we scribbled a few comments about Super bowl XXX, which was occurring across town in Tempe, AZ. The 150 foot tall Tom’s Thumb is named after Tom Kreuser, an earlier-era, Arizona rock climber.
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Over the last decade, I thought Tom’s Thumb and the whole North end of the McDowells would be lost to million-dollar homeowners, but the town of Scottsdale established the McDowell Sonoran Preserve and created a rich network of rock climber, hiker and mountain biker trails. These paths are demanding yet smooth.
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I recommend sampling these trails as soon as possible, while the desert is still moist and colorful from this wet winter.
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We parked at the new 128th street parking lot and did a clockwise-lollipop loop consisting of Tom’s Thumb, East End and Windgate Pass Trails. This 13 mile ride took us about 3.5 hours. I’m fairly sure that we did not lollygag along. I might be a lollygagger but I was with Dara and she was fresh off another Squealer win – so I am gonna say that we did not lollygag. 13 miles in 3.5 hours! Yeah these are steep demanding trails.
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Happy spring everyone!

 
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Incredible Winter

Published on March 1, 2010 by

This AZ winter will be another to remember, and with so much snow on the ground, we will likely be boarding the North side of the Kachinas’ into June.

McKenna’s third snowboard ride.

McKenna may be a little young to fully appreciate a good huck or slasher turn . The same can NOT be said for these splitboarders.
JY.
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JE.
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Rico.
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JY following my ninja turns.
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JE slays it, right before some steep tight chutes that gave us a little more excitement than we bargained for…
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… the excitement came in the form of steep powder chutes that were too tight for turns. We both did a cartwheel to slow down – and rode it out!
JE has a fully stocked snow cave up in the Kahinas’. It’s now loaded with sleeping gear, food, and stove. I left my alarm clock up there where it makes since to wake up early for a full day of pow.
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Sometimes, however, it is best to sleep in and let the sun warm up the firm snow – maybe build a kicker while it softens up.

Our Family (Mom, Dad, Nahno and Sazi) took a little tour at our neighborhood stash.
Sazi dog hot on Dara’s telemark heels.
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McKenna will not sit idle while mom and dad have all the fun.
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Hard to believe that this powder tour was only a 10 minute drive from home – an incredible winter indeed.
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