Monday, December 28, 2009

Laying tracks

Me and Bud skiing the rim at Red Canyon, at sunset.





...part of our continued quest to ski every day and -- make it back to the car by dark.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Good Year

Laura's forget-me-nots.


Fourth of July on Main Street in Lander. Laura (in hat) and friends.





Ben helps Grandpa with the flag at the end of the day.



"Go to work" day with Mommy.





Laura


Laura & Ben hauling hay on Grandma's farm.


Secret trail in Yellowstone.


Southern Colorado.



September at Old Faithful.



Hugs at Old Faithful.



Grandpa Jack's experimental RV-7.



Grandma & Ben at Louis Lake for the Tepe/Kramer family reunion.










Rio Grande, Southern Colorado.



Ben, cousin Abi & Laura take a break from eating dirt.



Bud, foggy morning run at the farm.






Laura & Prince Charming.


Louis Lake, Wind Rivers, WY.



Yellowstone




Ben in the Winds.



Catching butterflies.



Dad's friend Mike taking Ben for a spin.



Laura's first fish, Brooks Lake, Absaroka Mountains, WY.



Brooks Lake.



Arizona and Laura.


Red Canyon near Lander.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Driving a Team of Horses down Main Street

Chuck is a Lander icon.  He brings his draft horses, Bo and Shorty, to town on Saturday and Sundays and takes people for rides in either his buckboard-style wagon or, in the winter, in his sleigh.  The sleigh rides are always fun, sometimes he'll take the team into an open lot and do the snow equivalent of donuts with tight fast circles.  You'll find Chuck hanging out behind the liquor store that he owns, Melody Liquors, on 4th and Main and will take anyone for a ride, free of charge.  

We know Chuck pretty well and often times he'll just show up at our house unannounced and tell us in very colorful language to get our behinds outside to go for a ride with him.  One time I was doing dishes and looked out my kitchen window to see him pull the draft horses right up in our driveway.    My kids always scramble to grab their coats, hats, shoes, whatever  - and make it out the door in record time to go for a ride.

One day Chuck randomly decided that I needed to learn to drive the team.  Here I am practicing with Chuck coaching me.  We are in the fire hall parking lot.



Chuck supervising my progress, a crash course in driving a team of draft horses.



After about an hour of practice Chuck showed me how to hook up the team and then he let me drive them down Main Street! I was pretty nervous - afraid that I might hit a parked car but Chuck was right next to me of course. 


I love these big guys.  They are a couple of sweethearts.



It was such an amazing experience and something I'll never forget it.  Chuck and his team are such a part of the Lander community and one of the many things I love best about Lander.  


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Fall Camping at Granite Hot Springs, WY

Driving through Grand Teton National Park on the way to Granite Hot Springs. This was the Bearpaw Bay Fire, in Grand Teton NP. Ben and Laura were excited to watch helicopters carrying water to the fire.


These falls are on Granite Creek and just below them is a small waterfall (below shot) that cascades down the side of the canyon to create a little natural hot springs pool.


Ben at the little hot springs pool below the falls.


Me crossing the river, again. I had to carry both kids (at the same time!) and then take our backpack full of picnic stuff to the other side. Carried them both at the same time to cut down on the number of trips because the water was freezing. And had to cross the river in the first place to get to the natural hot springs! Where's the husband when you need one?


Laura at the developed hot springs area - a great place to spend a beautiful fall day!












Sunday morning view, below our campsite.



I made this video for Scott since he couldn't come on our trip with us.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Last Day of Summer 9.21.09



The last day of summer with Ben at Red Canyon Ranch.





(This horse was trying to stick its head in my car window.)

Soil for legs

Axe for hands

Flower for eyes

Bird for ears

Mushroom for nose

Smile for mouth

Songs for lungs

Sweat for skin

Wind for mind

Just enough.

--Nanao Sakaki

Monday, August 3, 2009

Grand Teton Climb, Part III (The Summit)



We set out around 4:00 with our headlamps and started to climb, headed to the Upper Exum Ridge route.


Holly and Kathy in the wee hours.

That would be Jessica, our guide, at the top of this rope.

When the sun came up, I couldn't believe our stunning view - already we were looking down on the Middle Teton.

And when I saw how high we were, I did hug the cliff face, just a bit, until I got used to the exposure (the thousand foot and more cliffs/dropoff below us).


Holly taking up the rear of our team.


Holly and Michelle.



Me.

I'm not sure which pitch this is, there were about 13 pitches total.






The belaying was more tiring than the climbing (this is me again), after about the 10th pitch I thought my left arm would fall off.



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The best part of the day, after cresting the last scary-*$$ (but exhilarating) pitch of the Exum Ridge, and having the summit in sight. There's nothing like it, here's Holly as she tops out.


Some awesome views from the top. Below, looking north at Jackson Lake and Yellowstone. If your timing is just right, you can see Old Faithful blow from the top of the Grand.






And that's what friends are for -- climbing mountains together! Kathy and Holly.



Wyoming women who rock! Michelle and Jessica sitting; Kathy and Holly standing.




This is an 120' rappell with a good portion of it free-hanging. It was a complete riot. (Michelle is rappelling here in the upper third of the shot, but you have to squint to see her.)
We went from the summit back down to the trailhead parking lot this same day.


Looking back at Wall Street, and part of the Exum Ridge that we climbed --- in the DARK!



Without a doubt, the best beer that I have ever had, thanks to Michelle's husband Jason. He met us in the Lupine Meadows Trailhead parking lot with beer and camp chairs.



And last but not least, here is my support team with a mountain of muffins for me! Scott made little stick figures climbing the to the top of the blueberry muffin heap.