Ranger Kathryn's Arches

September 3, 2011

Do what you haven’t done before (reprise)

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kathryn Colestock-Burke @ 10:36 am
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Kathryn on a new conveyance in a new place. She likes that.

I’m a fan of cross-training. In my case, however, it’s not the “swimming in order to improve endurance in running” variety. No, I’m talking about my deepening belief that if you undertake endeavors that you’ve never done before, it helps you successfully meet the NEXT new thing that you’ve not faced before. Today’s photo: there I am, biking through the Gravelly Range in Montana on a mountain bike (that’s TWO new things!) just a couple of weeks before leading my first ranger tour through Arches National Park’s “Fiery Furnace.” Finding out that I could muscle through the first one increased my confidence to tackle the second one, even though they are very different things.

How about you? Have you any experiences that would support this concept? Leave a comment.

August 14, 2011

The bike and I

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kathryn Colestock-Burke @ 7:23 pm
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A boiling water spring in Yellowstone lures me off my bike for ten minutes.

Tossing my dirt-caked gear and sweaty clothes into the back of my car, I felt changed. Tired but invigorated. Spent but refreshed. Somehow made more ready for whatever was to come, as a result of this five-day bike trip in Montana and Yellowstone NP.

One of my paradigms has subtly shifted. I’ve never viewed bicycling as a legitimate way to travel more than a few hours’ journey at a time, for me — and that had better be on level ground. Something happens in one’s brain when you join a group of folks who know better.

I’m sold. Self-powered journeys are remarkably satisfying. In the spirit of full disclosure, let it be known that I used the support vehicle on Days 1 & 2 for some long uphills… but managed on my own the remainder of the time, to my great delight. Got top-notch mountain biking instruction from my guides, lots of encouragement from my fellow bikers, and basically couldn’t stop smiling on this adventure. Highlights to come; stay tuned.

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