Sunday, May 26, 2013

Road trip to Idaho

After over 2,500 miles of road tripping in the old family minivan, I've made it to Stanley, Idaho!  Despite some very long hours in the car, it was a great time as I caught up with relatives in Detroit, former teammates in Boulder and Indianapolis, the Verry's in St. Louis (who hosted me for several months in Burlington when I was attending UVM in 2011), and a high school cross country ski teammate in Wyoming.  I also camped and hiked in the Tetons (without getting eaten by bears) and passed "the world's largest wind chime" and signs for the "largest prairie dog" in the plains.  Go figure.  Anyway, I am now in Stanley Idaho, at the base of the Sawtooth mountains, training to be a white water rafting guide.  I got in a couple runs  here on the Salmon river already and can't wait for the rest of the summer!
driving through kansas, almost 14 hours on the same road from St. Louis to Denver

following the oregon trail in Wyoming

Hiking by the tetons

sunrise over the tetons

Stanley, ID

Visiting the Verry family in St. Louis!

some mountain biking in Laramie, WY 

the old family van broke 200,000 miles as I started the trip

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Well, it's been a long time since I made an appearance on the blogosphere, so I thought I'd post an update to let any of those who are still checking in know that I am still alive and well.  After returning from my South American adventure last December, I moved down to Burlington and resumed my studies at the University of Vermont.  While most of the kids I graduated high school with are in the final stretch of their college career, I've been gone for so long that I almost feel like a first time student.  The first week or so was a bit of an adjustment, as I seemed to have forgotten everything that I had learned in my freshman year.  I quickly caught up, and for the first time, I wasn't using every second of free time to be out training on my bike, and I was a bit confused as to what a normal twenty year old does with his free time.  Fortunately, I was not long left in a state of dazed wandering through the grocery store, looking for pasta and rice a la my bike racing days, and took the opportunity to get back into some of my interests that had been sorely neglected during my racing.  I picked up some alpine and nordic skis and a college deal ski pass relearned how to enjoy the powder.  I also got involved in the UVM outdoor club where I just finished training to be a leader for next semester, and did a fair bit of camping, snow shoeing, and even some backcountry skiing in Vermont and Mount Washington.  After the sun came out and the snow started melting, I started riding bikes a little bit, even going so far as to go to a race with the UVM cycling team.  I started doing some coaching ( and learned the best places to go dumpster diving to stretch my grocery budget as far as possible.

I finished up exams last week and am now preparing for my next adventure, which is a job with a white water rafting company out in Sun Valley, Idaho for the summer.  I'm starting my westward road trip in a couple days, and can't wait to see what the summer has in store for me!
Any way, I'm still alive and adjusting well to my new "retired" life.  Sometimes I watch a bike race on TV, and feel a bit nostalgic, especially when I see old friends and teammates racing doing well.  However, the more time passes, the more perspective that I gain, and am grateful for both the experiences that I had in my cycling life and the opportunities that are presenting themselves now.  Thanks for reading and check in soon for updates from Sun Valley!