Monday, June 29, 2009

To Portland for Chris's Baptism

My little sister Lisa at the scenic overlook on the way to Portland.
Lisa knows how to party, just give her some strawberries.

A new friend we made at the scenic overlook, he was not very good at posing and this is probably the third time we made him sit right there and I finally got the picture that stole his SOUL!

All the family that came for Chris's Baptism.  All my family and then Mike's parents Rolf and Pam.

Mine Mom and mine sister.

Father and Son.

We went bowling for Chris's Birthday, you can't really see his smaller shoes but he is in there along with Sarah, Lisa, and Dad.

Soccer ball cake, my favorite!

My Sister has a guy that is in her ward that served in the same mission as my dad and he had a yearbook thing that my Dad's picture was in.  He liked it.  It was pretty cool.  It was lucky for my Dad to even have made it because the night before we left he got ultra sick from some food poisoning and was in a real bad way.  We are all so lucky he got to make it and that he didn't puke in the car either.

My Mom and Dad's first grandson to be baptized, they real happy.

All in all it was a really fun trip, I slept most of the way back from Portland, pretty much all of the drive through Oregon and a bunch of Idaho.  We also stopped at Hagerman where my Dad grew up and saw some of his family, I didn't get photos there though.  Then we went to an old fish hatchery.  I will get a video of that on here soon.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Yellowstone, a little bit of a soggy day.

A big pot of bubbling, smelly, wonder.  Eggs, maybe that is the smell, sick baby diaper would be my second comparison.
A little bit of rain clinging on for a little bit longer.
I used some different white balance and got this cool reflection photo.  It reminds me of the shape of sound samples when you record music.
Because of the rain there was a lot of sharp contrast everywhere and it looked so bold everywhere you would look.
...and then pass through...the BARREN FEILD!

Among all the white rocks this one decided it wanted to be green, so it did.  Props rock, not pop rocks but props, rock.
I think this is an old indian trail marker, go up.

Don't drink water that smells like this.
Here is one of the shots Oliver managed to keep his eyes open for...geez Oliver. was really stinky.
Oliver and Cami
Chelsea and me

I went to Yellowstone a few days ago with a few friends. It was a free day at all of the national parks in the US as part of the "stimulus package" thing.   Here are some pictures.  It was raining when we started our hike and it made all of the colors have incredible contrast and some of the trees looked neon almost.  It was cool.

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Middle Teton

On Saturday, June 6th I got to hike the Middle Teton, something that I have wanted to do since I was able to tie my own around 12 or...17 or something like that.  It was a big acomplishment for me and I was really glad I got the opportunity. 
So how this all came about that I ended up hiking the Middle Teton is kind of interesting.  At the school I am going to you have to take a course called FA 100 and a few months ago I signed up for it for the third, or maybe even fourth semester. It is a worthless no credit hoop you have to jump through.  In my opinion life could go on with out this little hang nail class.  Anyways I was looking at the events list and I spent most of my time looking over to the outdoor activities instead of the fine arts I should be experiencing and saw this and decided to sign up.  Tyler and Tyson were really interested in going as well but the tickets got snatched up really fast and they got left out, unfortunately.  They are slow......ticket buyers.

Thursday night before I went we had a little meeting at the ORC and the guide told us all about the equipment that we would need and then had us ask any questions that we might have.  I asked him if the trip would be canceled for bad weather.  He told me somehting  that I will probably remember my whole life and that is "I don't believe there is such a thing as bad weather, just unprepared people."  With that little peice of advice I spent a bit of time on Firday getting ready and I thought that I had gotten everything that I needed but....I had a little bit to more to learn about his little saying I suppose.  I packed a wind breaker, a sweater, and poncho becaue I expected some rain and it had been up to 85 F in the valley and so I was thinking something very different compared to the rain and snow with near white out conditions we experienced.  It turned out OK but I would never go up there again like that. I was like the kid that brought those little squirt guns with the trigger pump to a water fight where everyone else is packing the latest in super soaker technology, I could play but I ended up getting really wet.         

 We left at 2:00 am and got to the trail and started hiking at 4:30 am.  Two words fo that....puke......yikes.

I got to hike with crampons and an ice pick though.  I thought it was really rad putting it on my pack and got that satisfying feeling I got when I first got to eat off the adult menu at Burger King, like a legitemate customer.  Then once I saw the slopes we would have to use those tools on I had that destroying feeling I got once I realized there was no toy in my new "legitemate" meal.  It was in words steep, slick/slushy, and 4,000 feet vertically that we had to mountaneer. We were wearing foreign foot spikes that grip verything except rocks and make it very likely to roll your ankle.  Walking on the snow was like playing the lottery and if I was the unfortunate winner of the scratch card game I would go up to my crotch in snow, but just with one leg.  The other leg was still really high and confused at why I chose this of all times to stretch like an Olympic hurdeler. The ice pick we were holding was tied to my wrist and had three different points that could puncture my body or cause severe lacerations, potentially.  I was supposed to use this thing that more resembled a native american scalping tool to keep myself from going too far down the packed snow slope incase my spiked feet didn't hold.  Our guide gave us instruction seconds before we were supposed to use it.  It was kind of fun but at the same time imagine learning this exciting mountaneering technique from a guide who is also telling you things like, "if that happens you should probably just kiss your butt good-bye," and "if you fall of this side of the saddle it is about a 1,000 foot drop before you would start to slow down, you would probably fall all the way to the bottom of the Alaskan Basin."  All this was spoken steps away from where these hazards lie.  It was exciting to think I was really there doing it and at the same time my mind could think of little but keeping at least two of my three new mountain daggers on my feet and hand at all times in contact with a firm patch of ice.  Doesn't that sound comforting, "a firm patch of ice."  My whole life I have been taught ice is bad, walk around if possible, now this.  

Those were some of the thoughts that were going through my head up there, but you know, after I started walking a little bit it was not too bad.  I just wish that, if I could change one thing, I had goggles or at least sunglasses because the wind and snow pelted my face and eyes pretty bad all day. My face is falling apart today because of it and Sunday my eyes were swollen huge because of the sun off of the snow.  The top was kind of anticlimactic because we could not see anything for the snow and cloud we were in.  But I got a picture of the surveyor marker at least.  
On the way down I did slip once and shoved that ice pick in the snow and scratched that mountain with a desperation that I don't think I have really felt before and thought, wow, this really has me on edge.  It took us 9 hours to make it to the summit and 3 hours to get down, even with a half hour break to eat.  We got to glicade down a lot on the down side.  We got to sit down and then just sled down like you were on a tobogan, just make sure you stop before you get to those big rocks.

As of right now I am not sure if I would go through something like that again.  I felt like I was physically prepared from track practices, I am not sore to speak of, and I had ample food and but as far a gear goes, I was caught with my pants down.  Perhaps if I took my guide's advice and prepared better I would have a different opinion about the trip.  That saying has been on my mind almost constantly since the hike.  Life is going to give everyone situtaions we have to go through that require careful preperation. Along with extreme climbing to deal with it will blow and snow, sometimes rain and lightning on you.  There are so many aspects of preperation that we can get set in our lives; physical, financial, educational, spirituality, and relationships.  Some are more important than others but every aspect of preperation is invaluable when that storm comes.  "If ye are prepared ye shall not fear." D&C 38:30