Friday, May 3, 2013

Spring Makes Me Smile

It's spring time in Banff.

It's the time of year when it can rain, snow, sleet or hail all in a day before the brilliant blue sunshine comes out.  But only for a moment.

It's the season of change.

Spring has many faces in our beautiful backyard.  It means ample snow in the high country and signs of spring in the valley bottoms.  It means the return of the elk to my front lawn:  he is there to graze on the new blades of grass that are growing.  These things make me smile.

This is spring in the Rockies!

Wintery days spent ski touring, with the *chance of spring* in the valley.

In the past month my runs have gone from crisp, cool, Rocky Mountain blue sky days.... the emergence of dry trail on the shore of Lake Minnewanka.  This is Suzy dusting off the cobwebs of a winter spent ski touring, finding her spring running legs.  I don't know about the the rest of my trail running friends, but I stumble a lot in Spring.  My trail dexterity is elusive - it takes some mileage to build up that skill again! In the meantime, I stumble and trip and bang my toes on rocks and roots with a big smile on my face. I once was a trail running stud, I swear!

Just last week, the lake was showing some signs that the ice might break some time soon. It's that time of year.

I made a drive out to Invermere, B.C to enjoy some dry trails.  It's only 2 hours from Banff, but a world away.  On this day, I danced along the trails of the Toby Creek Canyon and saw crocus' blooming and different migratory birds stoppping by.  I also picked a few ticks off of my legs.  I bust out my T-shirt and shorts and just breathed it all in.  The change of season just smells good, despite the ticks.

From there, I picked up Nicki and Claire and we headed off for a spring roadtrip to Ellensburg, Washington.  I couldn't resist a return visit to Yakima Canyon to run the Yakima Skyline Rim 50k.  I love this race, this course and the good running folks of Washington.  It's always such a good crowd and my experiences have been nothing but stellar in Washington.  I injured myself preparing for this run, so had decided in advance to go out and enjoy the scenery anyways.  I hiked the 25km, spent some quality time with Claire, enjoyed incredible views in the Yakima Canyon and even paused for a Pabst Blue Ribbon at the aid station.  We were DFL and I enjoyed every moment.
Nicki and Claire

An awesome spring weekend was enjoyed by all!  Thanks to James Varner for hosting such killer events including a keg, live music and the highlight:  hippy chicks making pizza. Yay for good people and good food!  And beer.  We did some damage to that keg.

Keith and I have been planning a spring bike tour and all-of-a-sudden-like it's time for our spring vacation!  We head off tomorrow to drive to Utah.  Keith has mapped out a 1000km ride through Zion, Bryce, Escalante and other desert goodness.  I can't wait. It will be a year since Keith's last bike holiday, which had a harsh ending and put him in the hospital.  His recovery has been nothing short of amazing.  I'm looking forward to this holiday for so many reasons, but mostly because I get to hang out with my hubby and enjoy an adventure together for 3 weeks.  It's going to be awesome.

Lastly, I saw this massive Grizzly Bear footy print on Wednesday's run.  A true sign of spring in the Bow Valley! I love living in a place where this is reality.  Trust me when I say I was happy to see his tracks, but not him. These tracks were huge.

Wishing you all great spring adventures!


Mary said...

Yay, you're back in the bloggy world. Been wondering what you were up to. Have a great time in Utah!!

Kaz said...

Nothing beats the smell of spring in the mountains - except poss when it rains in the mountains in summer after a hot spell - wetted down dust - hmmmmmm - LOVE it! Happy Spring and happy holiday - definitely an extra special hol for you guys!

Helen said...

I just sat down to send you an e-mail to say since you've stopped blogging I've had to start my own. "Yay, you're back!" A wonderful post. Happy spring to you. Safe riding and a wonderful adventure in Utah.

Danni said...

Crap I gave Stormy your things to bring to Banff. Should I get them back?

Barry said...

That is a monster set of bear paw prints. Hope you enjoy a wonderful time in Utah. Helen has started her own blog. Looking good.

James said...

Greetings from Southern California! I have been following your blog for some time. I will be in the Banff/Canmore area later this month and I would like to ask you about trail conditions and any recommendations you may have.

Leslie said...
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James said...
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