The Ultra Experience

Here's to the adventures of my life which are usually ultra marathon trail running or fly fishing but may include other trips, experiences, thoughts, opinions, or pretty much whatever I want. As co-founder of Altra Footwear my life and adventures seemingly revolve more around developing and promoting the best footwear in the world...and I love it!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Goblin Valley

So last weekend I led a small group of people to Goblin Valley for my job as an adventure trip leader at UVSC. It was a quick weekend trip without being hardcore. We just had a fun and relaxing weekend. Also my wife Zanna was able to come on this trip which is always fun. It was the full moon that night so hiking around the Valley of the Goblins was brilliant to say the least. The next day we also hiked Little Wild Horse Canyon, which is a very cool yet accessible slot canyon in the area. It's just a neat little area.
It was also my two year anniversary of Ultramarathoning! Exactly two years early I ran my first Ultra event which was....the Goblin Valley 50K. Being there definitely brought back some memories. Sadly the race was cancelled this year. I've heard substantial rumors indicating that it will be back next year. Hopefully huh?

Monday, October 29, 2007

Moose Fighting & Movie Star

So last week I decided to go on one of my most favorite training runs with my good friend Karl Jarvis. We started at Rock Canyon and went up the right fork. On the way up we ran into a female moose which quickly ran away. We were excited to see the amazing creature. As we neared Maple Flats we heard some weird noises. As we crested, we saw one of the most amazing spectacles of nature. Two large bull moose fighting! We were stunned. The moose saw us and moved to the far side of the meadow. We stood there whispering about what we had just seen when they started fighting again. It was incredible! It is something that I will never forget. I don't know about everyone else but the running this past fall has been great.

Also, on a recent video by Park City Television I'm on TV! It's a short video on downhill running techniques hosted by ultra great Karl Meltzer and Scott Mason. It's an interesting 2 1/2 minutes. Look for a 3 second blip of me at 1:05. It was during the 2006 Mid-Mtn Marathon that I ran. Check it out!

Sunday, October 21, 2007


For those who have not been to Havasupai or who don't know what it is, you need to find out and go. Aside from Runner's Corner I have a part time job as an Adventure Trip Leader for Utah Valley University. We lead a trip to Havasupai every year and I got to be the trip leader this year. I was excited to go back, since my only previous experience at Havasupai was only for one day. The drive down was long and tedious especially when one of our vans got pulled over in a small Arizona town. Luckily he only got a warning. Our group of 19 people camped on the rim Wed night and hiked down in the cool temperature of morning. The trip was pretty uneventful aside from playing in and around the waterfalls. They were gorgeous as usual. The trash and hygiene of the campground and village definitely put a damper on things but our group ran into some LDS missionaries in town and we volunteered to help clean up an area of the village as a service project which was totally cool. An Indian woman died and so we cleaned up her yard and house as well as built a memorial for the funeral to take place under (see picture). It was a neat experience. We hiked out Saturday morning and drove home that night, making for a very long day, but we all survived and had fun. Being the leader of 19 people gave me a slightly different perspective since I was directing traffic and worrying about safety etc. We all had a great time and I learned even more as an experiential educator and leader. Next weekend I am leading a trip to Goblin Valley and then over Christmas break I'm leading a 9 day sea kayaking trip to Baja Mexico. Lots of fun!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Front Side of Timpanogos

So the other week I wanted to go for a nice long run. I finally felt recovered from Wasatch and I needed to go long. I decided to run the Great Western Trail along the front side of Timp. It was a beautiful day and I felt good. Nearing the saddle of Baldy I felt a blister coming back on my left foot. I stopped on the saddle to apply some tape when, as I was looking up at Timp, suddenly decided to go for it. It was a spectacularly spontaneous decision that I rarely make yet I soon found myself heading straight up the south face of Timp. No trail, no trees, just me heading up an extremely talus and angled slope. The wind was crazy and luckily I had my Golite Wisp jacket which is amazingly wind resistant as I powered up the mountain. Finally reaching the Saddle I was nearly blown off a cliff due to the ridiculous wind. I'm not the best judge of wind speed but it must have been 50-60 mph winds as I slowly and tiltedly made my way up the ridge line. The view was beautiful with snow patches from the first couple storms of autumn and the valley below. I was getting a bit chilled but I quickly made my way to the summit. After starting at just over 5,000 ft in Orem, I had made it to the top (11,749 ft) in just under 3 1/2 hours! It was awesome. Soon I was off heading down the mountain. The autumn colors were perfect and the run, aside from the small blister, was unbeatable. I barely had enough water and I took 40 oz on a 76 degree fall day. Doing this run in summer would be way too hot. Luckily it was perfect for me and I had an awesome run! This run is definitely recommended for you adventurers. Happy trails everyone.