Saturday, December 13, 2014

Mt. Normal Life

Here I am sitting around on a Saturday morning thrilled that I just have to do normal holiday errands.  Given that I don't have a lot going on today (yay) I thought I'd post a blog. The interesting (if you call it that) part is that I really don't have much to say. 


But here is what's going on with me. I'm on the umpteenth iteration of an idiotic diet to lose weight. My dad died young, and it's always on my mind so I am consciously thinking about how to get healthier. Obviously food is a critical component. 

I also decided I was tired of not being in great physical shape so I've started doing P90X. So far so good. I just finished week 2 and am happy with the discipline its i stilling in me. Results?  Kind of but not really for another few weeks. I guess I am able to do more of the exercises now than I was when I started so that's something. 

As for climbing, this is the tough time of year. I can hike but can't really climb until March at the earliest. But then I get caught up in kids activities so I can't really climb until late July or August. 

I'm thinking this year of trying Fishers Chimneys on Mt Shuksan, a tougher route up rainier or maybe even both. With my P90X training I should be able to conquer anything. 


As for the blog, I think it's going to evolve. I've always tried to focus iron the climbing side of middle aged mountain climbers, but I honestly see some middle aged thoughts starting to creep in. 

Stay tuned. The beauty of this blog is that it's really therapy for me.  If you like it too, it's a bonus!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

My inspiration for climbing

I've read tons of climbing books. Everything from kids climbing Everest to stories of the earliest climbers. By far, the book that's inspired me the most is Seven Summits, the story of Dick Bass and Frank Wells and their efforts to be the first to climb the highest peak on each continent. I just re-read the book again and its still inspirational. It's what's led me to climb. If you haven't read it I suggest you do. 

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Me on summit of broken top with the three sisters behind me


Untitled
Originally uploaded by jburtrosen.

Broken Top

Finally got back out in the mountains. It's been an incredibly stressful winter and I needed to take refuge in a tent, and on a mountain in the middle of nowhere. My choices for a weekend climb were Mt Hood or Broken Top, a 9175 ft. Volcano near Bend OR in the Three Sisters Wilderness. I opted for Broken Top and was very happy that I did. It was beautiful and exactly what I needed. I went with a guide and we were the only two people anywhere near the mountain. A lot of snow shoeing on the approach.

Horrible weather at night. So bad we were making other plans on what to do for the day. The weather cleared up and we snow shoed over to 11 O'clock couloir, a 500 ft stretch of 40 degree snow/ice. Hardest climbing I've ever done but I loved it! Crappy snow and rock and we were pitch climbing the entire time.

Got to the top of the couloir, traversed the other side of the mountain, saw every volcano from bachelor to hood, and climbed the last piece to the summit. The last 10ft were the scariest but coolest thing ever. The snow was so bad I couldn't get my crampons to bite without pushing out my steps. Finally I scrambled up and made it! Really, unbelievably beautiful!

I realized a few things about myself. I love hard climbing. Way more interesting than walking up glaciers. And there is no question, my happy place is by myself on the side of a beautiful mountain with amazing views and a blue sky. Such an amazing experience!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Blogging and Climbing

I am now promising myself that I am going to start blogging a lot more.  Its kind of like a catharsis.

As I mentioned in my last post, from February, this is my do over year.  This weekend is my first chance at making last year right.  Last season, Mark and I attempted to climb Mt Shasta via the Casaval Ridge route, a route, our guide informed us, that "10s of people climb a year."  But, no summit do to snow conditions.  This year, in a fit of brilliance, we've decided to climb the more standard route, Avalanche Gulch, and do it in two days.  Day 1 up to a high camp, wake up at 12 am, climb at 1, summit, return to camp, break camp down, hike all the way out, and drive home 6 hours to Portland.  I have been exercising a ton so its now time to see if it will pay off!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The Mulligan of Climbing

This years theme is "mulligan mountaineering". The goal is to summit everything I have tried but haven't summited in the cascades. Namely St Helen's, Shasta and Baker. So far, St Helen's is scheduled for either late July or late August. Still working on the other two.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Early thoughts on 2012

Yes it's only November, but it's looking like the theme for this years climbing season is "summiting the unsummited". 4 mountains I've climbed and not submitted, Mt Baker, Mt Shasta, Mt St Helen's and Cotopaxi in Ecuador. Not much that I can do about Ecuador, barring a lottery win, so my focus will be on the other three. Currently the plan is looking like Shasta in June up the standard route, St Helen's I. Late July so my 13 year old can go with me, and Baker in August or September.

My wife is awesome and is on board, planning begins this week, than training!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Lame, but happy holidays

I have been so negligent on my postings for the last few months. Why you ask? No great excuse. Work has been pretty busy and the family takes time too! Both kids have chronic lyme disease which is one of the toughest experiences to go through. The symptoms are not obvious, so people have a hard time acknowledging that the kids are sick. The flairs are unpredictable, come and go, and aren't controllable or curable. The toughest part is watching the kids go through it and feeling helpless.

I guess the point is to be careful out there in the woods when hiking, climbing or just being. Those little ticks are bastards and don't discriminate.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Mt Hood Climb - June 13, 2010

Dog Mountain Hike - Columbia River Gorge

Monday, May 31, 2010

Mt. Defiance - The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Mt Defiance -- One Tough MoFo



Mt Hood is 2 weeks away so I am in the throes of the final stages of training. So, this weekend, I hiked up Mt Defiance. Who knows is any of this is true, but some people say its harder than Hood, and some people say its the toughest hike in Oregon. Whatever it is, its a killer! Basically, 4,900 ft elevation gain in 5.2 miles. Its literally straight up hill with very little rest. The views from the top are amazing although we couldn't see Hood since it was socked in.

This was more of a climb than a hike!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Today's Hike at Nesmith Point - Serious Butt Kicker

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Today's Hike up King's Mountain

Climbing Mt. Baker

Slideshow of Mt Washington Climb

Recording about the Mt. Washington and New Hampshire Trip - 2/11/07

6 Minutes of Video of the Mt Washington Climb 2-11-07

This is long but will give you a feeling for the climb on Sunday.