Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Thinking ahead to winter

I have been thinking a lot about what I'm going to do this winter. The past few years I have gone into winter without really putting much thought into what I wanted to do for recreation. I would just do everything that came up. I'd get really stressed trying to fit everything in and end up feeling like I did nothing.

This year I'd like to plan a bit. What do I really want to do? Of course, the first thing I think of is ice climbing. It is my one winter passion that I will not be giving up anytime soon. But I want to do more exploring this winter. I want to get away from the climbs around Anchorage and get further out into Alaska. I want to get away from the climbing community and the talk of grades and climbing gear. I feel like somewhere in my quest to become a better ice climber I have lost the adventurous spirit of the sport.

But I feel something else creeping into my interest. Biking. That would be the winter variety. I have had so much fun mountain biking this summer, and in the few winter races I did last year, that I'm not ready to stash away my bicycle just yet.

But it's hard to fit everything in when working a full time job. Maybe I combine the two? So I got to thinking about the number of frozen creeks and snowmachine trails that lead to remote ice climbing spots. Most people get rides on a snowmachine or ski in the long snowy approaches. Why couldn't I strap my ice climbing gear onto my bike and head back into these canyons. Hmm... but I'll need a better winter vehicle.

So now I'm on a quest to buy the last big piece of Alaska outdoor gear that I will need. That is of course, until I take up packrafting.

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