Tuesday, April 8, 2014

I Climbed a Mountain! (sort of)

One of the great things about being a pilot is I get the chance to explore cities that I might not otherwise.  I've been to a lot of places and gotten to see some pretty cool things.  And typically, I try to explore a place by running.

Take Grand Junction, CO.  Situated on the "Western Slope" of Colorado, it's a deserty town close to the Utah border, not far from Moab.  It's about a 4.5 hour drive from Denver, and when I'm there, while I'm still in the state of Colorado, I might as well be a weeks drive from home.  It's a little town in between a set of cliffs knows as the "book cliffs" and the mountains of eastern Utah.  It's a pretty town, known for good mountain biking and farming, specifically peaches, wine, cherries, and figs and dates.  

I first went there in mid-2008 when I was with Lynx.  I fell in love with the peaches and missed going there a lot when I left Lynx.  Now that I'm Kansas City based, flying the Q again, I'm overnighting there a lot.  And Junction, more or less, is where my running comeback has started.

As most/all of you know, I have been very lazy since Ironman.  I know, I know.  But it's time to get going again.  And the best way for me to get going is by running.  So I've been doing a lot of running in Grand Junction.  Our hotel is close to the airport, but nothing is too far away in this city, and if you run about a mile away, you're in the middle of the desert.

Yesterday I ventured out for a 5 miler.  I quickly found myself running by dirt bike tracks and some prickly pear cactus.  There's a lot of sand bluffs around, and on impulse, I decided to climb one.  It might have been a 30 foot climb, but to me, it was amazing.  Even being 30 feet above the dirt trail, I could see far out into the valley of Junction, got a great look at the Book Cliffs, could see the airport, etc.  It was truly one of those breathtaking moments, and just felt great.

Like I said, I've explored some great cities in our country simply by putting on my running shoes and going out. :-)

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