Jul 5, 2010

Hood River; SUP, mtn bike, Mt. Hood

Canada Day long weekend....

After much indecision, and plans not coming together Andrew had the great idea to head to Hood River. Two years ago I did a 24 hour adventure race there with the Yogaslackers and remember only good things about the area. I was instantly in. Of course like many of our trips we brought a variety of equipment with us: mtn bikes, mountaineering gear and SUP gear.

I am really enjoying SUPin and the community surrounding it. I am still new to it all but am diving right in there. I love racing them, I know I would love expeditions on them and teaching fitness on SUP boards. Deep Cove has now invited SUP paddlers on the Tuesday Night Races. Last Tuesday a huge crowd turned up... it was fantastic and surprising. The sport is growing fast. I also met some of the Starboard reps. I managed to leave Deep Cove with a SUP board that needed repair in Hood River. SO hence, the SUP addition to our gear list. There also is a race series put on by BIg WInds in Hood River every Thursday night on the river. As we were heading over on Thursday and due to border delays (2 hours...boo) we actually arrived into town just in time for me to race.

Big Winds Race
The water in the Hood can get mighty choppy due to wind and current and although not in full force on Thursday the chop was more than I was used to on the SUP. I was paddling the Starboard PIN (which I really like). It was racers choice for the course as the original route would have been too much in the higher than expected winds and current. The racers managed to still choose a pretty lenghty route but I didn't mind. There were some big names out on the water which was exciting stuff for me. It was a shore start which now I am 2 for 2 for terrible starts (I need to work on my off the board starts).

Other than the pros out front the rough chop didn't set me too far behind. It was out with the wind but against the current, back against the wind but with the current and then a little loop in the protected flat water area. I didn't want to embarrass myself so I pushed hard... In the end to my surprise I managed to be the first female to finish. Following the race, Andrew and I chatted with some local SUPers, all of whom were very welcoming. I got the pleasure to meet with Nikki Gregg who is one of the pioneers of SUP fitness. She was grand. We tried to meet up again but alas it didn't work out. Next time...

The crew at the SUP race let us in on a campground not too far from town... Tucker Park, we rolled in late Thursday night and very lucky to eventually find a spot... we were not the only Canucks with the idea of heading south for the long weekend... We even got to enjoy fireworks from the campground for Canada Day!

Post Canyon Mtn BIking

Friday morning, we decided to check out a local mtn bike area called Post Canyon. The trails are plentiful, smooth, and fast. We rode for about 3.5 hours with a mini adventure Andrew and Lina style (lost but not lost, a little bushwhacking, checking out closed trails, understanding why they are closed and finding the trail we wanted by accident and because Andrew is a curious man in a very good way).

Mt. Hood and its SUMMIT
Wake Up call:

Friday night after making dinner at camp and gathering up our mountaineering gear we drove away from sunshine into some extremely harsh weather. We drove up to Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood to get ourselves ready for our summit day on Saturday. We arrived as the sun was setting but we couldnt tell as we drove straight into dense fog, harsh winds and rain. We got our paperwork done and made the back fo the subaru outback ready for bed.... We slept in the car to only get up in a few hours. We began our hike with a harsh 3am wake up call (and we think we were one of the last to leave the park lot that morning compared to the other climbing parties, actually we heard some leaving at midnight or so...). We set off in the dark but to our surprise the rain had stopped and we could actually see some stars... The day was looking hopeful. I was feeling surprisingly good. I really love doing outdoor activities in the dark (it reminded me of my time in Whistler when Megan, Nick, Adrian and I would start some local hikes at midnight due to our weird work schedules, oh and adventure racing...I digress). As we hiked over and on moraines light was beginning to enter the dark sky. Once we hit the top of the ski lifts we could put away our headlamps and put on our crampons... I set us off at a blistering pace over the first hump as I really really had to use the "bathroom" but we managed to catch too many climbers and I wanted to get away from them... AFter my little bathroom experience with a blue bag (lets just say I don't deal with bodily things very well...) As we headed past the crater and onto Hogsback one of the first climbers was on his way down... speedy guy. The climb wasn't too bad and the toughest part both physically and mentally was the last pitch to the summit. It was steep, I had crampons but not mountaineering ones and one axe that I hammered into that snow each time with effort and security (in my head it was my lifeline...) the tough part was that we managed to catch a load of people and so found ourselves heading straight up the middle of three chutes and right below two guys making their way down. While they were coming down they were knocking chunks of icy snow down along with them... one managed to hit me square face right in between my eyes on the top of nose... I was concentrating so hard on sticking all of my spiky things into the hard snow that I neglected to pay attention to the snow falling on top of me... I am still wearing my hard core scab from it all..haha.. I decided the best solution was to stop thinking and just giver' to pass the two guys coming down... it worked. Andrew and I reached the summit at about 630am... But we didn't hang out there for very long as the summit managed to be a long huge cornice hanging over a steep cliff... hmmm... not my idea of a place to chill... so we took our pictures and began the descent.

Now, I am definitely an UP girl.... I find descents tough and a little more nerve racking. You always read about deaths and injuries from people coming DOWN... SO, I took my time. We eventually made it through the tough spots, stopped for second breakfast and tried out some glisading to save the knees but instead gave ourselves bum burn (the snow was sharp...). We were back at our cars at around 10am... We spent the rest of the day napping, swimming in rivers, drinking coffee and doing that kind of thing.
We wanted to head out for a SUP but alas it was too windy and we couldn't get ourselves any boards...

Surveyor's Ridge Mtn Biking
We fell asleep quite early Saturday night due to our early start and so getting up fairly early to get in a bike ride didn't seem so harsh, well especialy after our 3am wake up the morning prior. We headed down to another mtn bike area and found a loop that would take about an hour, 8 mile loop (we were heading into to Portland to meet a good friend of mine, Risa from my MN camp days). The ride was a blast, fun single track up and down with great views... loved it! We will be back for more biking...

We met Risa, ate, caught up and then headed back north... the border was a breeze and now its full on with school work, assignments and other life things....

all in all a fabulous weekend away with my awesome husband to be (wow, thats kind of nutty sounding but love it....)

more pics posted here!

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

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