Saturday, April 30, 2011

It's Here...

It seems like just yesterday I posted this, but it's been longer than that and the time has arrived for me to make an attempt to haul my butt up the Salathe Wall on El Capitan.

photo from:
I am currently sitting in Sacramento airport waiting for Tommy to come pick me up (he just flew in to Reno from Alaska, has to pick up the van in South Lake Tahoe and then come get me).  We will do our typical TJ's grocery run and then off to the Valley.  Looks like the weather is going to be sunny...maybe a little toasty in the low 70's...but doesn't look like rain!  We are hoping (pending Valley conditions...not sure about how the snow melt is, etc) to start up May 2nd and probably take 3 days to ascend, which means we will be down the night before I turn the big 2-5.

Here are some photos of my first trip to Yosemite almost exactly 2 years ago.  Right before I went out to meet Tommy in the Valley he told me he liked me and the rest is history!  We had fun hanging around the Valley and did some classic climbs (Serenity Crack to Sons of Yesterday, Moby Dick, Blue Suede Shoes and we also did The Free Blast, which is the first third of The Salathe on El Cap)!  That was such a magical trip and I'm excited to be back 2 years later with my now husband!

TC Pro prototypes!

Perfect hand jams on Serenity Crack. LOVE it!

Tommy picked flowers and had them in the dash when he picked me up from the airport.  :)

Our first official date on my birthday...Wine tasting in Napa Valley and dinner with the wonderful Chris McNamara and soon to be wife Lita!!

Blue Suede Shoes with no crash pad...I really trusted Tommy.

Moon Bow!!  We stayed up super late sitting in a chilly and damp meadow to take a picture of this.  The light from the full moon is enough and in the right spot to create a rainbow off of the mist from Yosemite Falls.

My first time seeing these ginormous pine cones!

Moby Dick...Love this climb!


Free Blast

I guess I'm not too scared of heights anymore.

Getting soaked on the Mist Trail!

Beautiful sunsets.


Bean Fever!

This past Thursday I made it down to Boulder to a fundraiser/gathering for Bean.  See info below to learn about what's going on with Bean and make sure to check out the website for more information.  There is also some great outings up for auction here, and chances to get out and go climbing with some great athletes (Tommy is one of them!!).  Check it out and if you can, support Bean in his battle and get a rad trip or day of climbing out of it as well!  Send some prayers, send some's all helpful.  This is one thing I have learned about the climbing community...they come together to help each other out.  I think it's a great thing and how life should be.  

Photo from
"As family, friends, husbands, wives, partners in adventures and believers in the human spirit, we started this website to support two wonderful people, Bean and Helen Bowers. Bean has recently been diagnosed with advanced-stage cancer. He is standing strong, facing and battling the horrors and necessities of chemotherapy with his innate grit and humor, but they’re in for one hell of a journey. As with all journeys, the Bowers' journey will require funding, information, planning, support, teamwork and, most importantly, all of us. 

You can help."

Monday, April 18, 2011

Missouri Botanical Gardens...

I'm in Missouri and it's kind of nice to be back.  It's been at least a couple of years and I enjoy seeing some familiar faces and places.  One place, however, that I never ventured to in my few years here was the Missouri Botanical Gardens.  What a pretty place.  Lynds and I strolled around for a few hours today and enjoyed the spring colors and flowers.  Kind of gave me an itch to have a garden and a lawn..these are probably distant hopes in the land of elk and dryness up in Estes.  It would probably help to be home as well to take care of those things...maybe another day.  For now, the botanical garden is great!

cute little boy feeding the carp!


Tommy and I went to Nashville to visit friends at the end of last month and also made our way to The Red River Gorge.  I was excited to go sport climbing as I have never really gone on a sport climbing trip....and of course eat awesome food at Miguel's!  We were there for just under a week and can't wait to head back again some day.  Tommy worked hard on Lucifer (5.14c) but the trip ended without the send.  We both enjoyed ourselves on a handful of other climbs; my favorite definitely being a super classic 5.11a at Drive By Crag....I am unsure of the name off the top of my head, but it was beautiful!  We made it back to Colorado for a few gorgeous days and then some wintery days best spent in RMNP on skis!

Tommy is headed on up to Alaska right now with a wild and crazy bunch of guys and I made my way back to St. Louis to catch up with friends from college.  We are going to rendezvous in California on the 30th and head to El Cap where Tommy and Kevin are going to put in some time on the crux pitches of their project.  After that we will celebrate my birthday and then conditions permitting I'm going to give the Salathe a go!!!!!  YIKES!!  It's coming quickly, and I'd say I'm gonna pretty far from freeing it, but I'm psyched to see Tommy in action and have some of my own up there!  Should be a good and challenging time.

A highlight in Nashville...Tommy getting to mow lawn for his first time on this fancy thing!!

I got to drive on the driveway, but didn't drop the blade.  Speedy thing!!

Staying warm by the fire in Kentucky on our rainy rest day.

Kaannnn tuckeeee.

Tommy on Lucifer.

That's my husband.


Not only a climber, but a magician!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

China Pictures...

So I realized that I never posted pictures from our trip to China.  The climbing was fun, the red tape was a headache, but what was really great was seeing a culture that was new to me.  I got to go along with Mark Jenkins (a writer and climber with us) around to interview people and take photos.  It was so fun to capture little things and get a glimpse in to these peoples' lives.  Here are some of my photo favorites.

Check out more on our China trip and rad photos/videos from Corey Rich and a slideshow narrative by Tommy here and here.