The summer started off on two wrong feet.
My eight weeks abroad with the American Field Service was taking me to Germany. I hadn’t studied German in high school; I’d taken French. I wanted to go to France. Or, failing that, to Mauritius, where they spoke French and a gorgeous, turquoise, left point break curled across the reef. I’d seen the pictures in Surfer magazine. (more…)
Colorado’s recent acceptance of civil unions reminded me of a social experiment in little Alpine County, California, shortly before Ellen and I moved there in 1973. (more…)
One. Nevada. A few miles from the California line, heading into the setting sun on U.S. 6, I have to put my hand up in front of my eyes occasionally, so bright is the starflash on the windshield.
Signs have warned, wordlessly in silhouette, of horses on the highway, (more…)
A late-season storm rolls through, a big one, the day after the Telluride ski area closes. A cruel irony? A classic bit of ski-bum lore? (more…)
Every mountaineering stage race needs its villain, and ours became the team from Piau Engaly. (more…)
From the sound of it, the randonée course Janelle Smiley faced at the World Championships in Pelvoux, France last month was fiendishly difficult. But it was just one day, or part of one day.
Rando races in this country are similarly staged as one-day events. The Grand Traverse leaves Crested Butte at midnight, with the fast teams arriving in Aspen for breakfast. The Sneffels Half Loop departs at sunrise from Last Dollar trailhead and finishes at beer-thirty in Ridgway.
But when we, Team Smugglers’ Notch, did Le Raid Blanc in 1987, we raced for six days straight, with a couple of “specials,” or stages, each day, the times accumulating like they do on the Tour de France. (more…)
As our team, representing the Smugglers’ Notch resort, lined up on the Italian side of the Matterhorn for the first stage of Le Raid Blanc, a pretty blonde woman stepped up and handed us RECCO strips. They looked like Band-Aids. “Pour le . . . uh, for ze shoes,” she said. We stuffed them in our pockets; we didn’t have time to stick them on our ski boots. (more…)
The town won its case against Don Nordlander and his mining equipment across the street from us on South Cora. We didn’t have to testify. (more…)
An obituary in the Montrose Daily Press did more than catch my eye; it brought on a flood of unpleasant memories from our early years in Ridgway. (more…)