and tempered
sitting mindful
with grace.


time to pack the lights ...

... for the after-work rides! fall is on it's way in, and the daylight is on it's way out.

white ranch... another one of my favorites. quite possibly for the sole reason that i get to climb to my hearts content. i love to climb here. it is so much fun.

date/ride night with ed: i got to finally show him my set of loops (all the loops i do that avoid the massive part of boring belcher blah) ... the loops i usually do ad nauseam every spring, summer, and fall ... the loops i've only visited ONE other time this year.

it was fun to get out and play. man, that is a short set of loops, and we didn't even have the light-time to do them all. harumph. as much as i hate the heat of summer, i will be sad to see the evening light of summer diminish before i even get warmed up!

again, started out with the intention of riding slow, easy, lite.... yyyyeeeeaaahhhhhh..... well. um. let's see. i, uh ... well, hit another hr HIGH record, and still kept it not only all in check and rollin' smoothly, my legs felt fresh the entire evening. ohyeah. this makes me giddy and makes me think i'm doing something right to recover from whatever it is i did to myself earlier in the season.

favorite parts last night: clearing it all with fresh, snappy power. the massive moon rising behind the clouds. riding out front.

i will post pix when i get them!


the art of friendship can be found in laughter

so, let's see...

friday night i was blessed with the company of my best pal, jen, and her lovely partner (now fiance), aaron gulley. visiting from santa fe (they are actually native CO folk), we hit DOMO for some chill sake and they delightfully inhaled some of the best tasting eats around.

jen and i have a friendship that has meandered the boundaries of colorado, new mexico, utah, savvvvannah. friends mostly after the high school experience, we've had some truly deep and wonderful adventures together ... our friendship being the best adventure of them all.

more to come on jen and aaron in the future.

for now: friday nights conversation and visit left me with perspective on partners, familial vs. romantic vs. friendship relationships, self-worth, sushi, mountain biking (duhh), weddings (they have just gotten engaged), and last but not least: a thousand cranes. (more on that in the future, too).

saturday morning: packed up the pony and headed out to indian creek. solo, just for a chance to revisit an old haunt. i've always found my version of the indian creek loop to be an enchanting 28 miles and 3k vert of purely enthralling whim. even though it is not a big ride, and it's right-close-by ... i still find it to be a near and dear space for get-away experience. i don't know why this is the case. i like the shadows on this trail. and there are parts of this loop that tickle my fancy like no other. oddly, i think i've only ridden this loop with other people once. it's been a long, long time since i've had the chance and right state of being to visit this old friend of a trail.

saturday's experience did not disappoint. the head-wind up the road was there, just as i had left it last time ;-). the climb up to the bench was a complete delight: having chosen to keep things mellow and keep the HR low for another weekend, there wasn't even a slightly sticky moment getting up the first hill. i didn't bother stopping at the bench, and instead sought to just get to the real climbing. stopped for 1 minute after the first steep ascent to eat something. let one guy pass, and heard a gaggle of other riders approaching. so i saddled back up, passed the guy, and continued the climb and the dance along the ridge line. i love that ridge line. one side peers endlessly west to godknowswhere, and the other drops into a deep dark forest. it's rocky in tricky places. the climbs are all super short power sprints (gives me a good chance to get out of the saddle and sprint), and the down hills always seem to keep me riveted. (i've eaten it here more than once).

dropping to the river (saw two more men stopped for a break), then climbing the meandering undulation up to the campground is always a study in lush, dense foliage. i had endless thoughts that all the lush brush i was plowing through was poison something. so far, so good (no itching). i was surprised that the climb to the campground appeared before me so quickly. passed two very quiet guys on the last climb to the cg.

decided not to stop as i turned onto the trail again. this part has always found me a bit lacking in power. it's sandy (decomposed granit, right?) today was no exception, though it went faster than usual, and it seemed to me that there had been some trail work since i was last here. cresting that one switchback, which signals to me it's time to stand and rip the remaining part of the climb, was just as wide-sweeping and loose and dirty as i had always remembered ... thus launching me into one of my favorite forests, which was blanketed in deep dimensions of piercing light, and soft, cool shadow. the trail was tender and wet and as silent as the night. i felt very lucky in the fresh of mid-morning cool.

topped that, hit the dirt road, passed a few people, and hit the first of the remaining climbs. remarkably, i didn't see a soul for the entire remainder of the trail. which surprises me. the other thing i found interesting is that i know this trail is relatively frequented... and yet parts of it are downright ... rough (as in, doesn't seem to see many riders). no matter to me. i was happy.

i finally got to the treasured descent ... one of my favorite around. it's so twisted and rooted. the ground is soft, black dirt. and the trees are tight. this part of the trail is not too particularly long, though it's not insignificant in length. i found myself thinking that it is very possible that i enjoy this loop for this very section alone. so be it. i've worked harder for less.

the other thing i found myself thinking ... is that i always find myself thinking (on this very loop) about how much i love choosing to ride this set of trails, how much better i feel towards myself for taking myself way out there ... racin' with myself..... for some seemingly absurd reason, i feel a sense of being 'proud of myself' for having gotten to certain points in this forest, on this trail, in these shadows. this is all completely silly in so many ways, and highly self-centered. but something about this ride ... (and i think i may know what--more on that later)... always finds me saying to myself: good job, jeny. you did it. and a clear sense of satisfaction and groundedness envelop me.
i always return from this ride, Well.

too many thoughts for here. and perhaps this is all a little bit too personal for a 'blog' entry. but hey ..... i have a busy mind. but i must admit that i have always laughed out loud riding this trail, playing with these shadows, smiling in that way.

anyway, the rest of the weekend: ed and i had a marvelous sushi date on saturday night, topped off with noir movies til 2 am. rare. and sweet.

sunday was a rest day. i read the first part of INTO THE WILD, and am enjoying the story and the writing. many thoughts here ... to be explored once i'm further into the book. i have conflicting thoughts on this one. ed and i then took ourselves for a little walk. we walked through my home town and i found new sources of inspiration and exploration. we watched a family of ducklings work their way up the river .... we walked around the lake and through the soft late-afternoon light. and for some reason, we were tired. well, ed'd saturday ride wore him out, but i really had no excuse.

sunday night culminated in a bout of laughter i've rarely known and hope to experience more often ... with my new found friendship, my renewed friendship, and in life in general.



before it fades.....

so i'm doing my best to ride light, and keep the HR down ... this in an effort to ride in a 'recovery' type mode for at least 3-4 weeks. more than i am 'over-trained' (whatever-- i don't ride enough), i am UNDER-recovered. seems simple enough.

last weekend's ride time was specifically oriented towards: warming up, riding a light pace, not chasing anyone, not being chased by anyone, just out riding, slipping thru the sunlight ... most notably with a smile plastered to my face.

towards this end, ed's initial intent was to head off in one direction to do his 'big' high-mileage sprint. which was to leave me hours to go wander around all the single track and deeply wooded realms i could possibly fathom.

the ride started off normally enough ... although my intentions were to keep it mellow. i thought for sure ed would take off at the first climb.

sigh. somehow we ended up spending another day blazing through the woods, sneaking around tacky-wet corners, and flying our ponies all over buff creek. (woe-is-me;-))

yeah. somehow, somewhere, we transcended the dry-colorado space and time and ended up in some freaky wet-zone where THOUSANDS (I'm dead serious) mushrooms were ... growing...... in colonies.

needless to say, we spent an hour gawking and taking pictures of this strange little world we stumbled upon.

so much for ed's big sprint day. he decided to ride w/ me instead (grin).

so there has to be something interesting to say about intention here... something about meaning to do one thing, and ending up doing another... something about everything coalescing into a state of perfection regardless.

we spent 35 miles and almost 4k of climbing pretty much chattin' it up, rollin' thru the woods, chasing the shadows of the chaotically clouded sky. and somehow, somehow... i managed to pull the highest heart rate reading i have on record? the mystery of it all is ... after mile 20, i started feeling really--really rather good. downright sassy no less.

i obviously don't know how to keep that hr low (surprise?)

ed snapped a few shots ....

let's see, if i can recall, from the lower lot we hit: that burn climb up to the CT, down/up/down the CT to green mtn, up green mtn down green mtn, landed in mushroomland. hit the climb (ct?) back up to the green mtn loop, back to tramway, down tramway. down the dirt road. hit lower gas house. hit uppper gashouse. some ghosty track over to some road to some other road to a downhill road to skipper. accross-down-up skipps to that other road. up to monkey crossing (i mean charlies) to sandywash, to the extra sandywash to the car. yeeehaw.

or, i suppose it could have been said this way: over the river and through the woods ....

i snapped a few shots....

and somehow our day of riding our own separate rides ended up being a meshed bliss of one mightily fine - fine day.

amen to that!


rocky mountain HIGH

high on life that is!

so, a bunch of men gathered above steamboat this last weekend, camping in the midst of the mighty open space of sky and meadows and trees that is rabbit ears pass. bunch of lucky guys that they are, eh?

more women need to show up at these events... please?!

there are so many posts, blogs, pictures, reports about the weekend i feel like i have nothing really more to say. go look at mtbr and see for yourself. these men with cameras are just something else!! (ALL photographs here are provided by EdEmtbs and AnthonyS. Thanks so much guys!)

for me personally, friday's ride was just spectacular ... yet again new trail for me (blush), and a wicked good time it was. the climbing was such a lovely pitch, and the descending completely put me in my place. the company was inspiring and and uplifting, and i feel lucky to have been a member of the the group for the day. how i didn't flat on that sincerely gnarly rock-fest is beyond me. how i didn't eat-it is also a mystery. i must not have been moving fast enough.

saturday's ride was a good solid slap in the face! we hit some of the same trail as the day before, but took a rather faint left at one of the junctions and headed up another freaking luscious climb. this time, i trailed ed and clay ... and frantically chased their strong asses up and up and up. for goodness sake, guys!!!! that was a spectacularly rippin' time!!! countless undulations of ups, flats, downs, ups and more ups, and the corners were all super sweet, and the trail was just challenging enough to keep me from thinking about anything but trail trail trail. truly one of the best yet this year ... trail wise anyway. wish i was feeling as strong as i think i should.

this is all just fluff. really, the only thing i wanted to write (publicly) about is..................................................... how full and deep my heart is for one sweet creature: Randall:

Randall belongs to one very interesting young man by the name of Joel. Well, really, Joel belongs to Randall. And Randall, belongs to an elite class of pupps (9years a pupp) who get to actually accompany mtb'ers on solidly long rides.

Randall is a model dog. He is smart, kind, sweet (unless you have facial hair), he is fit, and just as positive and motivating as one could ever want in a companion. Here he is modeling for Ed in one of the numerous water encounters along the trail (damn he is a smart dog):

This is Randall showing off his multi-tasking skills (smiling, running, looking beautiful, keeping up, herding the mindless mtb'ers):

This is Randall doing a thoroughly impressive job of chasing down a run-away freight train (note the still blatantly obvious joy he exudes, as well as the stealthily-chaotic way he remains completely invisible to the run-away!):
Many of us could learn a lot from Randall.

However. It seems that he does not know when the fool-hearty mtb'ers try to trick him into sleep:

I do not know what you would feel like after his spectacular efforts +1 beer, but i for one would look/be nothing as present as this picture of Randall seems to portray. that said, many of the mtb'ers from the RMH gathering this weekend seemed to be able to partake in such wildly PBR tainted adventures and seem none the worse. How DO they do that?

that said, my dear friend and comrade fell to the mileage and push of such a deep exhaustion:
I imagine that i would look something like this just after a beer while on the mountain bike... not two days worth of hard-ass chasing . My goodness, Randall.

Randall, my personal opinion and advice is thus: please slow down, please take it easy, please eat more, please just don't follow joel to the ends of the earth. playing ball is fun.

I have acutally been in this state. and when in this state, the only thing i can comprehend is the need for food, and the apparent edge of Being that i feel like i'm about to cross. were i not able to get my own food, or keep conscious enough to not slip into oblivion ... i just don't now what would happen. aw Randall, my wish for you is endless piles of beef jerkey and hot dogs at the end of every ride!!!

In the end, it's all about satisfaction, and the joy of hard effort, skill, love, attention, focus, presence, and peace ... no?

Randall... i hope you are recovering well.


(This was a picture from the KOKO pre-ride days...... I just like it. I have no other pix for today, so I will post this one;-))


My ride/date/bbq/awards night was fabulous.

Walker Loop is about the shortest thing around, but man, it is really FUN. Ups, downs, rocks, rivers, views, forests, meadows, long staircases molded into the side of the steep hillside ...... there is really no section of this loop that I don't like.

And, I've not ridden it in ... well, too long. In fact, I think the last time I rode it was as the 'super loop' version back in, oh.... OMG: April 16, 2006... with CYN. I should have taken a picture yesterday of one of my favorite spots (like I could pick one).

Anyway. Short at it was, it was titillatingly fun. Not quite enough to get warmed up, but good enough for a tease and some super satisfying tree, evening sunlight, nice tacky trail time. Oooo-la!-la!

The party was a blast. I've not seen so many people in far too long. It was good to reconnect. It re-inspired me towards the XC scene. Just some Fun Folk.

It is my pleasure to announce to the world that Cynthia Ferrer is Boulder's Ambassador to Mountain Biking. That was her award ... in addition to: Best Dressed Crit Racer ;-) Plaid skirts go a long way. Perhaps I should invest in one?

This year I received the High Mileage Award. Ed received the Extra High Mileage award... And, I think he also sort of received the "Thank God Ed Is Here Award", as Cyn didn't seem to want to put on the same kind of miles ... in the same kind of manner (I usually ride with Cyn quite a lot over a season. This year has been a bit of a different story ...... she's been out hammering on the poor XC gearie girls while on her sexy super SS.... I've been out in the middle of nowhere, riding around in bliss ... and lovin' it!)

In truth, the High Milage Awards go out to: Lynda, Dave H. Fred, JayP, Matthew Lee, and Jill. I ain't done nuthin'. There are more, and I know you're out there....... OMG you are so out there ;-)

In fact, it's occurred to me (thanks Ed) that I have pretty much spent the last 6 (SIX) months of weekends on NEW trails (for me). Most people might not find this to particularly interesting or fascinating, but really: I've lived here my whole life. So.

So. You all know how much fun it is to be on new trail.

I've heard a few people mention the word Fall. The day it stops getting over 70 here, will be a day I fall to my knees and thank the Universe for ... well, for Fall. (It's been in the 90's for what seems like months.. although I'm sure it's only been a month... a month too long. 90's + ... WTF?)

Jill, you mention that the temperature when you started your ride was 54? Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiice.

Ok. I'm yammering.