• Category Archives Fitness
  • Grand Canyon North Rim

    Through a coworker, Lloyd – yet again, we had the chance to go for a quick hike in the Grand Canyon, this time from the north rim.
    Not many people visit the North Rim as its a bit of a drag to get to.
    It took us 9 hours to drive there (vs 5 to get to the South Rim).
    Something like 16 million visit the south, only a few hundred thousand visit the north. Fewer still hike in from the north.

    Just like a lot of mountain ranges, one side gets more rain and so has more vegetation than the other side, so the north rim gets more of everything and so tends to be more woodsy than the south rim.

    The fun part is that its also at 7000 feet, not 4000, so rain tends to be snow.
    When we arrived Thursday afternoon, this is what greeted us;

    Snow. Feet of it!
    And a howling subzero wind just for good measure.
    At this point we three (Lloyd, Terry and myself) seriously considered calling it a bust and going home…. But after talking to the ranger who assured us that the weather in the canyon itself was beautiful, we figured we could survive the first mile or two and go from there.

    Next day, we parked the car in the snow and black ice, shouldered our packs and tried to find the trail.

    Thankfully it was the opening weekend and so the rim to rim (to rim) runners had beaten down the trail and it was very clear where we had to go.
    It was just a matter of watching out for ice. The top of each step was slick. The snow was Okay, but the steps, of which there are many many many of, were really a trap that had to be avoided.

    As hopped, the views were amazing.

    The trees and snow made for some really quiet and peaceful hiking.
    We spread out and just got lost in our own worlds for a good hour or so.
    Very pleasant.

    Before long, snow to turned to mud and slush and then to damp earth and then to the usual dry trail.
    Sure enough, it was a beautiful day for hiking in the canyon.
    Terry in the famous tunnel.

    Lloyd crossing the bridge about half way down.

    Terry and I got to the camp site first.

    Did not take us too long to get a bit settled and the hunger hit.
    So we heated up some freeze dried food and tucked into lunch.
    Unfortunately Terry’s meal sort of exploded and stuck to his hand causing a pretty nasty burn. We had a full first aid kit and so were able to dress it, but it took a little of the shine off his day.

    We went for a walk after lunch, but there was still plenty of down time.
    Terry took his Kindle to read a novel, Lloyd also brought some reading material and I slept.

    Before you know, dinner rolls around and after dinner, desert!
    Terry had cheese cake, but Lloyd and I both had apple cobbler.
    The instructions for ours were rather complicated, and I was not in the mood to mess about, so I just put hot water in mine and called it done, we ended up with this really bad textured apple custard weird hybrid mix…. It looked bad, but tasted pretty good.
    Lloyd was a stickler and so followed the instructions, here is the bit where it has to simmer in a pan with a lid for 10 minutes.

    No star photos, too cold for me to get out of the sleeping bag!

    Next morning, up and out.

    The snow had largely melted and it was another beautiful day.
    8 miles in and 8 miles out. (25ish kms)
    Fun little hike.

  • Little Hike

    A mate and I are going to (hopefully) be hiking the north rim of the Grand Canyon in about 2 months, so figured it would be a good idea to start putting on some hiking miles.
    We did 4 miles as a warm up at our local trails at Dripping Springs.
    There are no springs, but there are some nice trails and views.

    You can get a sense of what its like from the photo.
    Lots of wild flowers this time of year, some great views and a nice single track trail.

    Anyway, a nice few hours out in the fresh air with a mate was welcome.

  • Data Quality

    I have given up on the ankle tracker.
    Two reasons. 1 the old Fitbit was flaking out on me and not synching its data and 2 I had trouble getting good consistent heart rate data from my ankle.

    So, we have bought a new Fitbit against my better judgement and past history (I have had 4 of them break) with them.
    They just kill it on data presentation (their dashboard is super nice) and convenience.
    I got the Charge 3. Its small, light, good battery life, great data, solid synch and was cheap enough for me to afford to give them another chance.

    In case you are wondering, the Garmin has gone back to the left wrist and the Fitbit has gone on the right in place of the Android Smart Watch.
    For the past few days I have not missed the Android.

    Ah, the joys of being thebaldgeek.

  • Ankle tracker

    You might be a geek if you use an old hard drive magnet to keep your ankle fitness tracker attached……

    I want to keep track of my walking and resting heart rate and my ring/Garmin are just not cutting it.
    Freddy stopped using her (my) old Fitbit Blaze so I have started wearing it again. Because I have both the Garmin on my right and my Android Smart Watch on my left, the only spot is on my ankle.
    Of course ankles are fatter than wrists, so I have been challenged finding a band long enough to go around.

    The joys of being thebaldgeek.

  • Blown Knee

    Well, that did not last long….. I had not even started ramping up my miles when I started to get some random pain in my knee.
    No idea at this stage whats going on, but it is bothering me enough that I can not even really walk much.
    Kneeing is out of the question.
    Hard to say if its even running related…..
    Anyway, I am taking some time off and we will see how it responds to rest.

    Yeah, major blow to the mental health score board for the year…..