As for the last few years since my retirement, I blame my lack of local sightseeing on my obcession with trying to get X-C.com up and running. Honestly, the nordic world (like many other amateur sports) is hard to 'sell' - sure the business side of the program is easier now after 7 years, but it also demands constant attention or you can quickly lose any forward progress.
As I continue to train for the TR-Run, I decided to focus on volume for the past few days. On Friday, I killed my still tender legs (from Canmore Challenge) with a hard intensity session with Devon Kershaw (NST). I got worked, big-time...and after a hard 2-hour run, I was back home nursing some now stiff (and tender) quads. On Saturday it was Ivan's turn to push me as we ran/power-hiked up Grotto's (true) summit and back in 4hrs. Grotto is a bitch of a climb - it really does suck, BUT, if you're looking to gain lots of altitude in a short distance, I guess it does serve that purpose...
To cap of the weekend, Bob (old roommate/crazy adventurer) and I ran the reknowned Rock Wall Trail from Floe Lake to Paint Pots. For those of you that have taken the time to hike/run this trail...wow...you know what I'm talking about. I'm told that this is one of the 'classic' hikes in the Rockies - most hikers camp along the way in 2 or 3 days. the beauty of this loop is that you have pull-out options ever 20km or so. The loop we completed was just under 40km but included a whopping 2,000m of climbing, reaching beautiful high alpine meadows at 2,400m.
Fireweed in full bloom - invade all the avalanche chutes
Our original plan was to do the complete the largest of the Rock Wall loop which included going up to Helmet Falls, but as we reached the last fork at the 4-hour mark, the sign to HF indicated another 27.5km - which meant we would be adding on another 3-4hrs of running/hiking minimum...for a total of 7-8hrs. After a quick soke in a glacial run-off, we decided to abort and take the fastest exit back, another 12km or so back to the parking lot. After 5 1/2 hours of steady running and hiking, we were quite happy to have skipped the last detour.
Bushwacking in bear country (that's why I let Bob take the lead here!)