The countdown has begun! My summer ends at exactly 12:30 Wednesday afternoon...and I'm not super excited about it. Luckily I've already had some adventures; two trips to Mt. Hood, Oregon for summer training, a backpacking trip with my dad, a skiing venture at Logan Pass, and the first few hours of flight training to be eligible for a solo flight completed. I have lot's of stories to share, so I'll just add captions and explanations to my numerous pictures--which I hope are already worth a thousand words.
At the end of May my family took a vacation to somewhere warm for once: Key West. We actually stayed at a beach house on Sugarloaf Key.
Guess what I got for my birthday?
A spring storm on June 6th dumped 22 inches on the summit of Big Mountain! I woke up to this beautiful view on the morning of my birthday (I took this picture from my front porch).
After school ended I went to Mt. Hood for a five day race camp--three of which it was snowing sideways. My old coach Jeff Pickering was there (he now coaches the U.S. Women's Speed Team), and I had some valuable slalom training.
After leaving Hood I had the fever bad...
|Marina by the Going-to-the-Sun Road|
I went on my first backpacking trip with my Dad in July. The approach was a 6 mile hike that gained 1800 feet up a Lake Mountain (switchbacks), and lost 1800 feet down the un-trailed Chain Lakes basin on the other side. The last quarter mile or so was a black-diamond-steep 400 foot descent through a ridiculous amount of bushes--the only animal sign we ever saw was of bears and humans (I guess the deer and elk are too smart to be up there).
|The Cutthroats were everywhere!|
In mid-July I was surprised with the opportunity to return to Mt. Hood and train with some of the best coaches in the country at a six-day Western Region camp. After the first day of slalom training at dryland, I was running backwards through an agility course and tripped, spraining my wrist. I had no grip strength for a couple days after, and was stuck doing this:
The final two days of the camp we trained giant slalom, which I could actually do! The problem with slalom was that the shock of hitting each left gate with my pole-guard caused my sprained left wrist to hurt very badly, whereas in giant slalom there is no gate-blocking involved. The training I took part in ended up being very very valuable; we were working on arcing the turn above the gate rather than skidding the whole top part of the turn.
Between and during all of these summer things I was working on finishing next year's English. I used an online program to get 'r' done in just 10 weeks. I did this because I want to graduate high school early--whether a semester or year early I do not know yet. All the homework hours I put this summer were absolutely worth it.
After my last trip to Mt. Hood I started up flying lessons, and I've been enjoying them tons. I hope to solo before I have to focus nearly all my time and energy on school and skiing. The pictures below I took from my dad's Aerostar Twin-Piston over glacier park. The plane was very useful in scouting out our backpacking trips to make sure the lakes weren't still frozen!
|Bowman Lake of Glacier National Park|
|A view of the park from the north-east reveals all of its glaciers|
|Heaven's Peak from the Going-to-the-Sun Road|
|Telophoto of a huge chunk of glacial ice slowly sliding down the face of Heaven's Peak|
|Wild flowers are sprouting up where ten feet of snow covered the ground in July|
|Where I was skiing about two months ago|
And just because everybody loves a good crash...