August, come and gone

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This blog tends towards the abstract and wordy (Patrick calls it “occasionally erudite”; others might call it “pretentious.”) For some reason, this is the mode I’m most comfortable writing in, probably because it’s public and I am not quite enough of a digital native to live a good chunk of my life online.

Sometimes, though, inspired writing fails to materialize on schedule. This has been the case over the past month, but as a new chapter in my life begins, I feel compelled to establish good habits early. Basically, writing is important to me, and I want to keep it up, even when laying lexical bricks feels particularly dull and laborious.

In that spirit, here’s what’s happened over the past month, in bullets and photos.

– I live in Seattle now.
– I’ll be here for 5-7 years, working on a Ph.D. at the University of Washington. And getting to know every crag, cirque, and valley I can in the North Cascades.
– I spent a good bit of August traveling. Oregon for a wedding, Vermont to see my family, Wyoming en route to my new home.
– I ran the Race to the Top of Vermont up Mt. Mansfield’s toll road. Finished 4th in 36:44. A tough but satisfying race in a new discipline for me, against a number of Olympic-caliber nordic skiers.
– I ran 440 miles, 74 hours, and +71,000′ in August, certainly the best month training I’ve ever logged. In four days, at Pine to Palm, I get to see if the ends justify the means.
– Moving is hard, and always bittersweet. But I am very happy to be back in the PNW.

I’ve been taking photos, too.
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Astoria, OR on a rare day of brilliant weather. The wedding deities must have smiled on the pairing.
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A lonely valley in the Gore Range, CO, following a quick escape from a storm cell that caught me on the summit of Keller Mountain (13085′).
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The happy bride (right).
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Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolius)
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Their “first” dance.
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The sinuous, half-mile scramble to Keller’s true summit, top center and left of the half-moon shaped snowfield below the saddle.
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I am really, really going to miss fall in the high country.
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Vermont is still brewing better beer than almost anywhere else.
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Harebell (Campanula rotundifolia)
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The famous sugar maple, Acer saccharum, hinting at the coming fall in northern Vermont.
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And finally, halfway through the move from Denver to Seattle, I visited the Tetons for the first time. I spent the morning circumnavigating the group, a spectacular and satisfying introduction to a storied range.

Onward. More to come.

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One thought on “August, come and gone

  1. Pingback: 2014 by the month | Beyond the Ranges

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