Local Love: Auckland Outdoors

Disclaimer: I’m an ambassador for Auckland Outdoors, a Colorado company I am about to talk about, and while I am being reimbursed for my work with them all opinions and such are my own! I applied to be an ambassador because I love the gear sharing concept they’ve come up with and how they make it easier to get everyone outside! If you have any questions/suggestions/thoughts…send them my way! I’d love to hear them and pass them along, anything to help make Auckland Outdoors more successful!

Let’s imagine a situation…one that many of you have probably been in.

You have friends or family flying in from out of town with big plans to go camping, backpacking or hiking. With the astronomical baggage costs they are packing light…which means they are coming without the proper camping gear.

Or, you have a friend in town that keeps saying they are jealous of your trips into the mountains…you plan out an easy adventure to get them experience the backcountry first hand but don’t have the gear needed to make their first trip comfortable and fun.

Or, you’re traveling to Denver without knowing many people in the area. You want to head into the mountains to do some exploring but don’t have the gear you need…and aren’t sure where to go.

You have a few options…

Everything and Nothing [North Fork 50M Recap]

It has been four days since I finished my second 50 Mile race…my legs still work, my feet aren’t broken and the vivid memories of pain are fading away. As of this morning I have officially gone on two short shake out runs since the race and my body has not rebelled. My poor, abused body never fails to impress me.

Now, about that race…

My day started out with nerves – my hands were shaking so bad that I didn’t really need to move my arm to brush my teeth. I was scared. But I knew what I had to do, so I did it. I threw my gear in my car and headed to Pine, CO where I parked at the fire station then grabbed a shuttle to the start. By 6:15am I had checked in, picked up my bib and snuck in a quick bio break – now I just needed to kill 45 minutes before the start of the race. The time flew by with so many familiar faces at the start. I knew people running, crewing, pacing and volunteering…I may have arrived alone and I may be spending many hours alone on the trail but I was going to know a lot of people out there and I was going to soak up ever single word of encouragement!

Trail Running - North Table Mesa - Golden - North Fork 50 Training

The Game Plan [North Fork 50M]

Tomorrow morning I’m getting up early, slathering myself with sunscreen, pulling on a neon BRC singlet and pinning a bib to my shorts. I’ll start my second 50 mile race at 7am and by 9pm I’ll either be appropriately rehydrating with a pint glass or getting yanked off the course because I missed the 14 hour cutoff. I’m really hoping for the first option…

So, what’s my plan?

Survival. I’m going back to the Quad Rock game plan that worked out alright for me. For me this is a training run with aid stations along the trail and safety pins in my shorts. That is all, nothing more. Technically speaking the North Fork course will be easier than the Quad Rock course but it could be [and probably will be] toasty warm and we’ll be running through burn areas with minimal shade. This means my focus will shift from merely covering the distance to paying attention to hydration and nutrition.

WIAW Dinner

What I Ate Wednesday [Literally]

We’ve all seen them, every Wednesday Feedly and BlogLovin’ streams are filled with What I Ate Wednesday or WIAW posts featuring all of the food the blogger ate…although not necessarily what they ate on Wednesday. Sometimes it’s their weekend eats. Sometimes it’s food from an event. Sometimes it’s…I honestly don’t know. I’m not entirely certain what the purpose of the WIAW posts are, so I decided to give it a try myself to see what it was all about.

A New Mindset! [Mt Evans Ascent DNF]

This past weekend I toed another start line…this time for the Mt Evans Ascent, a 14.5 mile run up a “Colorado 14er” mountain with over 4,000 feet of elevation gain. You finish at 14,264 feet above sea level and last year I learned that the altitude is real and it can kick your butt. This year…the wind was real, my mental mojo was missing and I only made it to the top because a motorized vehicle helped me get there.

Playing in Park City [Blend 2014]

On Friday morning I set out on another road trip – the Forester is definitely earning it’s keep! This time Natalie and I were headed west to Park City for Blend, a weekend getaway for a bunch of healthy + active living bloggers. We opted for the scenic route through the Colorado mountains on a mission to find donuts. Because it was National Donut Day, of course, no other reason. I had no idea Idaho Springs had a donut shop…turns out it does, and I will be back!

A Weekend of Cliff Hangers!

I spent my long weekend roaming the wilderness of Utah, scouting out routes down canyons, chasing down a very sneaky river, camping on cliffs and experiencing a rainy night in the desert.

When Heather sent out the “whatcha doing Memorial Day Weekend” email I got excited. We’re on the same page when it comes to holiday weekends – head to the mountains but trek your way into the backcountry to avoid the crowds! When the follow up email had “CANYONLANDS” in the subject line I knew it was going to be a good weekend!