Spring starts right after Easter in Colorado – so technically I rushed the season by a day to enjoy my first Spring hike of 2013.

Had already logged in 12 hikes by this time last year but also didn’t have a marathon goal in 2012.  All said, after this day’s hike I realized what’s recently been missing from life – HIKING!  I 1000% expect to add some extreme hiking into this summer, right after Alaska.  Humbled & centered again – LOVE the mountains!

Ro & I left early for Shanahan Trailhead in South Boulder.  Today’s hike goal: Devils Thumb.   Warm sunny Easter eve.  Goal was to hike the 7 mile trail (roundtrip) in approx 3 hours to beat the forecasted rain.

Hooked Ro to the bungee leash this day – expected him to be super excited & didn’t want to feel like I was the one being taken for a walk 🙂 Done and done.  Good decision.

Almost 2 miles of slow steady incline before we reached snow and any true climbing.  Passed a guy left behind by a group of 12 hikers who were soon in my sights.  Nope, I wasn’t late for the group hike – but instead a last minute tag-along.  Altitude was approx 7,000ft for most of today’s hike so a GREAT first burst back onto the hiking scene.

Stopped for a few minutes at a false summit where we shared some stories & introduced ourselves.  Lotta questions about Ro of course – what breed? has he ever hiked before? does he shed?  Doesn’t take long around Ro before you fall in love with Ro. 🙂

The last half-mile took a crazy amount of time to summit.  Crampons are best used outside of my hall closet.  Icy climb to a tree where I’d hold on and catch a foothold before progressing higher.  Any sudden moment by Ro would cause me to lose ground fast.  LOVED the camaraderie of the group of 12 Boulderites!  Kept hearing – are we there yet?  HA!

Unfortunately Ro got spooked during the final scramble so watchfully waited a few feet back while I summited.

So was it worth it?  Heck yeah!  Needed to feel small in the enormity of my outdoor Colorado surroundings.  Put life back into perspective. Expect to see a few 14er hikes again this summer.

Have been super inspired these days by skyrunner Kilian Jornet (subject of tomorrow’s post) so said goodbye to the group & decided to run down the mountain via Fern Canyon…adding another 7 miles to my journey with an elevation change of 3400 feet.  Ro did GREAT!  I’ve been dogging Ro for a year on how bad a runner he is…but this day, he did FANTASTIC!  Will take another year for my body to manage combining trail running & hiking like Kilian Jornet.  Of course he is 25 and I am….well, not 🙂

ROCKSTAR kickoff to Spring season!  (Snow forecasted for Monday…but it won’t last long.)



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