Sunday, January 29, 2012

How To Get Through Winter (Kids First Time Climbing Outside)

Go on a trip! We are so lucky to live where we do. We can go snowboarding one day, then we can just drive for 5 hours, have a nice sunny vacation and go rock climbing!

This week has been so crazy! I wrote about going snowboarding on Monday, then I went to the bike trainer class Tusday. Wednesday I went to Masters and swam a really hard 2150 yards. Thursday, I ended up taking the entire day off because Elle was sick again, but I was ok with that since this was my rest week anyway. I spent the day sewing curtains. Yay for rest week!

Friday I was back in the pool for 2100 more yards, by myself since Chris was gone. Then, after the kids got out of school, we drove down to St. George! Pete had a meeting and we were going to stay with our friends, Adam and Rachel. We actually didn't get out as soon as I would have liked so we didn't get to their house until 7:30 which is bedtime! We had some dinner and the kids played for a little while, but then everyone went to sleep!

Saturday morning, George slept in until like 8:30! Man, he must have been tired from that drive! We had a pretty leisurely morning. I hung out with Rachel and the kids played. It was funny because when her kids wanted to go outside, she was bundling them all up with winter coats, hats and gloves, and I just told my kids, "you might want a jacket." Elle just went out in long sleeves and said she was fine. I went outside in just a t-shirt, and it was a little chili, but it felt pretty nice actually! I'd say it was in the 40s.

I stuck around until George was fed and ready for the day, and Pete was up (his meeting went really late), then I headed out for a quick run. I told them I would just do 6 or 7 miles so I'd be gone for just over an hour. But then I stepped outside, saw the Red Mountain against the blue sky, and got on the path that winds through the lava fields, and it just felt so epic! Now 7 miles just didn't seem like enough, especially since this would be my one and only run for the week!

So I went for 8 miles. I knew everyone would survived without me for those 10 extra minutes. It was so nice out there, and it was funny to see people out with their hats and gloves on, and here I was wondering if I should have put on sunscreen! I just had capris, and two tech shirts - one of them long sleeved. My hands did get a little cold, but I could easily pull my sleeves over them and fix that problem.

When I got home, I stretched, ate some breakfast pizza Rachel had made, then I was like, "Ok, lets go climbing!"

The kids, especially Elle, were really excited to go since this would be their first time climbing outside. Adam, came with us and brought his 2 oldest kids so they could try it too.

We went to Chuckwalla which is one of our favorite places to climb, and also super easy to get to. I ran to here from town in March of 2010, and have been wanting to climb it again for a long time.

This isn't my picture, but it's a good shot of the wall. We did the 2 on the very end (right), and the one just above where the girl in purple is standing. (source)

There were people on the easiest route when we got there, so we started out with a 10a while we waited. Pete lead it, and I tried it on top rope after him, but it was too hard for me not being warmed up at all so I only made it half way. I might have tried longer, but I didn't want to use up my arms too fast and I knew the kids were all waiting for their turns so I just came down.

Pete set up the top rope for the other route, and also clipped the rope at the 2nd bolt so the kids wouldn't swing as much if they fell. Elle went first, and made it up to the bolt pretty easily so Pete moved the clip up to the 3rd bolt.

Isaiah went next, and I was off looking for Mindy and Ethan while he went so I didn't really see it, but he didn't really enjoy it very much. He thought it was dumb that you are supposed to use your legs! Haha

Katie went next, and she did a really good job, and made it to the bolt! Then Elle went again and also made it to the bolt! Even though she got tired and sung around a little, she got back on and finished! I was so proud of her, and look how happy she is!

I took my turn, and made it to the top! Yay! :)

Then it was Ethan's turn. I was so impressed with Ethan. He did such a good job! He made it to the bolt really fast, unclipped it, and just kept climbing!

He almost made it to the top, but suddenly got really scared about how high he was so he came down. Next time, though!

I had been worried that it would be a little chili, but once we got out there and the sun was shining on us against that rock, it actually got kind of hot! It was such a nice day! The sky was so beautiful and blue against the red rock, and we were just so happy to be there! I actually got sunburnt a little bit on the back of my neck from all that belaying!

Mindy didn't end up climbing because she wasn't feeling well, and she went home early with Adam and the other girls. Ethan and Isaiah stayed and had a blast playing around on the rocks!

Once, the kids were done. We moved over and did one more. This is one of our favorites, and it's actually the one I had my first lead fall on (awww!). We watched a guy have his first lead fall on it while we were there too. Then Pete went up, and he actually fell at the top (same place I had fallen), and pulled me up a bit! That was kind of exciting. I don't think I've ever even seen Pete fall on lead before, let alone while I was belaying him! Anyway, he finished it just fine after that, then I took a shot at it on top rope.

I think I kind of psyched myself out about that top part, and almost quit at the very end before finishing it! I'm glad I didn't though. It wasn't a very good finish, I just managed to touch the chains, then had him let me down. But that counts!

I'm really excited to get climbing outside again! It was so much fun! I hadn't climbed outside for a looong time. I don't even know when the last time was. Maybe when I was training for Ironman and we went to Black Rocks. That was in 2009. That's sad, I must not let that long of a break happen again!

George stayed home with Rachel.

And here's his sweet friend, Lily!

Hi, Lily!

We went back to Adam and Rachel's, had pizza and salad for dinner then packed up and headed back home. It was a really quick trip, but it was totally worth it. It was so much fun!

The kids all slept pretty much the whole way home which was good since we didn't get home until 11:30. I was so tired, and happy to get in my bed by then! Pete and I listened to The Graveyard Book on the way, which is really good.

Oh, one more thing! We saw the biggest, most majestic bull elk standing right off the side of the freeway in the dark on the way home! It was so unreal, and it scared us to death at the same time! It was so big, and if it had decided to jump out in front of us that would have been so bad, I can't even imagine. But it was also just so beautiful, and we felt blessed to be able to see him so close, even if it was just for a second. I hope he got away from the freeway after that!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you guys came. It was a fun weekend, and the kids had a blast! It was so cool that Katie got to try rock climbing, she was so proud, and told me later in private how important and special she felt when Pete complimented her. It was also really fun to get to spend time with George since I've hardly seen him at all since he was born.

    So glad you guys made it home safely and sanely--I was a bit worried the kids would have a hard time, but I'm so glad they slept :) Hope you guys had fun snowboarding and that everyone is well again!