Friday, December 17, 2010

At the Bottom Again

Well, I find myself once again at the bottom of the World. It's been a fun little trip, but I'm looking forward to heading home next week.
Christy Shultz is the new NOAA Corp officer at the Atmospheric Research Observatory and I've been working with her this austral summer in preparation for her upcoming winter season.
We did a couple of balloon launches which are always a little fun and excitement.

Then, on Wednesday, a C-17 flew over the South Pole to do an air drop. Sadly, the ice crystals and clouds in the air made the view of the airplane less than spectacular, but the halo and sun dogs were amazing. Some of the best I've seen here...
The C-17 which dropped 16,000 pounds of food near the South Pole.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Phish - Broomfield, CO 10/11/2010

Phish came to the 1st Bank Center just down the street from Boulder for a three night stand and I was one of the lucky people to get tickets to one of those nights. It was a pretty amazing show, and Shondia and I got closer than I have ever been for them. Only a handful of people stood between us and the band for the second set.
It was amazing to be so close and actually be able to watch their hands picking and slapping individual strings.
Sadly, my iPhone is a pretty poor substitute for a camera and these are the only images I even tried to take. How I wish I could get a pass to take my 5D to a show and patrol the outskirts of the stage...
Set 1:
Runaway Jim
Back on the Train
Wolfman's Brother
Halley's Comet
What Things Seem
The Squirming Coil
Run Like an Antelope

Set 2:
Golden Age
Camel Walk
Gotta Jibboo
Wading in the Velvet Sea
Backwards Down the Number Line

Sleeping Monkey
Tweezer Reprise

Friday, October 8, 2010

October Climbing

It's been a warm October in Boulder so far and I was excited to go climbing in the canyon this weekend. I went up with Eric and did my first multi-pitch routes. It was extremely good to get back on the rock after so long. Just to get away from the hustle of people is a blessing. Halfway up I realized I had forgot my iPhone in my back pocket, so I was able to get this picture at the top while anchored to the wall.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Mount Audubon

Before I got all distracted by a forest fire raging in the foothills of Boulder, I had gone on a wonderful sunrise hike up Mount Audubon with my Uncle and a couple of people from work. Leaving the house at 4am, we headed up to Brainard Lake and began the hike under clear skies and bright stars. I did not have my camera at the time, but I managed to get a few pictures on other cameras and transfer them to my computer.
Reaching the saddle along the approach to the summit, we paused to eat breakfast and watch the sun climb above the horizon to greet the day.
Me on the summit at 13,221 feet, bracing myself against the wind.
Mount Audubon is situated East of the continental divide, and inside Indian Peaks Wilderness. To the North, in the picture above, is Rocky Mountain National Park and Longs Peak.
At the summit, we hunkered down for a while in one of the wind shelters built from the rubble composed peak and ate handfuls of trail mix and a power bar or two. In the back are the rugged peaks of Indian Peaks Wilderness, and Caribou Lake, where Shondia and I had backpacked several weeks earlier.
Indian Peaks Wilderness from the summit of Mount Audobon.

Looking back up at the summit on the way down. Mount Audubon is a fairly easy hike and a good place to get a view of the land and plan future summits.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fire Day 2

The Fourmile Canyon Fire is still going. They have estimated that it will take another ten days before they are able to contain the blaze. I was doing a balloon launch on Tuesday and had some time to take pictures of the helicopter flying back and forth to the foothills. I also got a couple of pictures from the parking lot at work which show just how close and visible the blaze is to town.

The helicopter which will use the hose to fill up at the reservoirs before flying over to fight the fire.
The view of the foothills from the parking lot at work. A few pockets made their way in to view and black clouds lifted to mingle with the general haze of the fire.

And then I just had a few other pictures from the first night: 9/6/2010

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Monday, September 6, 2010

Four Mile Canyon Fire

The foothills of Boulder are on fire tonight. The blaze is pretty bad and heading towards a lot of people's houses. Thankfully the winds have finally died down. Hopefully we can get this thing contained, but I'm pretty sure it's going to be very bad. This morning, upon seeing the dark plume of smoke crossing the sky, I had the same feeling I had the day I heard about the oil rig sinking in the gulf. I hope this doesn't turn out the same way. It makes me sad though to see the forest going up in flames.
These pictures are from the Flagstaff Road Lookout. I am looking Northwest toward Boulder Canyon. Four Mile Canyon leads north from the canyon road.

Labor Day Fire

I was just putting some leftover thai curry in to the microwave when my uncle walked in the door and asked me if I had looked outside. A fire had just started in the foothills outside of Boulder and dark, billowing clouds were rolling across the sky.
I drove to get my camera and then Shondia and I went up to the I-36 overlook to take some pictures.
The news was reporting that the fire was in Four Mile Canyon and evacuation orders had been issued for the neighboring area and that some structures were in danger.
The smoke billowing across the I36 bridge in Superior, 8 miles south of Boulder.

The University of Colorado in the haze of smoke.
Hopefully they can put the fire out soon and it doesn't spread too much. The wind is supposed to calm down tonight which should help out.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Caribou Sunset

I forgot to include a picture of the sunset we were fortunate enough to witness before the cold drizzle sent us hunkering in to the tent and I proceeded to receive a brutal shellacking at Scrabble.

At least the pre-game and post-game experience balanced out being on the wrong end of fifty point words...

Also, GO BUCKS!!!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Caribou Night

This weekend Shondia and I went backpacking up in Indian Peaks Wilderness and camped at Caribou Lake. It was a fantastic trip and we had a blast getting away from normal life and back to nature.

I was a little extra excited while preparing because I knew the moon would almost be full and rising soon after sunset while we were there. One thing a winter at the South Pole will surely teach is how to be a good night photographer (as well as how to successfully thaw out electrical equipment...)

Soon after we arrived at the saddle of Arapahoe Pass, the wind picked up and a storm cloud built to the Northeast. Foregoing some hopeful dinner fishing at Dorothy Lake, the highest named lake in Indian Peaks, we hurried down the 750' slope of switchbacks to Caribou Lake and set up camp.

At the top of the saddle looking down the valley we would be camping in.

After a few casts of the lure in much-too-shallow water, and the realization I really must take up fly fishing, the cold breeze and drizzle sent us to the comfort of the tent early. A couple games of travel Scrabble later (Shondia whooped me both times,) we snuggled in to our sleeping bags to rest our sore legs and feet. Soon I could see the roof of the tent begin to glow. The sky had cleared and the moon was on the rise. Forcing myself to emerge from my now comfortably-warm sleeping bag, I opened the tent fly and set my camera as far out as possible. Once I saw the picture, I knew I had to get dressed...

The view from under the tent flap.

The moon rising behind the last remaining cloud in the sky.

I love moon light.

As the moon rose above the ridge line, the valley began to glow in orange and yellow.

It wasn't long before I was chilled to the bone from the cold mountain night and crawled back in to the tent.

The weekend was an amazing time and I can't wait to do it again. It would be a lot easier to go hiking if I didn't make myself carry an extra twenty pounds of camera equipment, but I don't think I'll be leaving it behind any time soon.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Morning Canoe

Abby and I decided that we should get our weekend off and running by going up to Gross Reservoir and go boating at sunrise. The sun just came over the horizon while we were winding our way up Flagstaff Road.
Once you get up Flagstaff, there are views down the southern canyon which leads to Eldorado Springs.
Once we got to the Res, we inflated Abby's canoe and pushed off in to the water.
My Olukai sandals strapped to the front boat webbing. They are the most comfortable sandals I have ever owned. Shondia reps them and I can't wait for the new line to arrive.
Abby ended up catching a trout at the inlet to the reservoir. It was pretty big and we quickly got the hook out and released it back in to the water.
We didn't have a measuring tape, but it had to be 24" long!
Abby and I stretching our legs before climbing in and heading back to the car. It's been unbelievably hot here and once the sun comes out it got hot fast!