Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Another Fall, Another New Job

Well, I have a pretty good record running here in Salt lake. Seems i have moved to a new job every fall we've lived here (this fall will be the third). and, this will be my third job. I am going to work for the University of Utah Emergency Room. hooray! a whole new kind of medicine, pace, and patients. i currently work for the university of utah orthopedic hospital, so at least i am just transitioning rather than moving to a whole new company. however, the ER will be extermely different than anything i've done in the past. i have a lot to learn, and it is a little intimidating. also, my schedule will revert back to my personal version of hell- night shifts. nights, swing shifts, weekends, and holidays. yes sir, i will be a regular nurse now, absent at many friendly gatherings, absent from the bed my husband will sleep in, and absent on christmas day. HOWEVER, i am very excited about the ER. i've always wanted to work in the ER, and the orthopedic hospital is getting more than a little old. i have found myself very inept at the politics that run that nice shiny building, and the nursing just isn't very challenging. so despite the schedule i will have to do, having the hoped-for job satisfaction in the ER will hopefully make up for the schedule. and this crazy schedule can't last for longer than a year. after that i will hopefully move out of those dreaded 7 pm-7 am shifts and work more 'normal' hours (such as noon to midnight - ha!)

it was a hard deicision given the schedule is such a con. but my current working environment is an even bigger con, so i took the plunge. my first day is oct 1. that's pretty much a full year from my start date at the ortho center. hmmm, i hope i haven't started a pattern here.

fall has finally arrived in Salt lake, and the hills received their first dusting of snow yesterday. Eric managed to pull off being a grad student one more semester, so we were able to get student passes to a ski resort again. thank goodness b/c i need another season of resort skiing to get a little better at Telemark(free heel) skiing. we've got those fall climbing plans again too-
hoooray for the colors burnt-orange and pomegranite, pumpkins, cinnamon, falling leaves, crisp mornings, hot tea, and....oh yes, hooray for eric now having to bundle up and ride the scooter to work!!!!! :)

Friday, September 14, 2007

Devil's Tower Pics

well here we are folks. if anyone can figure out why our mac computer won't let perfectly rotated pics be posted to blogger, please comment. until we can figure it out just keep turning your head 90 degrees one way or the other.

Liz getting cold while waiting to climb and the mist rolled in.

at the start of our one climb it was actually clear for a while. this is devil's tower's shadow over the landscape. it was beautiful!

i was starting to get really cold waiting for our climb....

frowny faced for having to wait too long, the rain coming in, and not getting to climb our route to the top. the first pitch of the Durrance route is up that leaning column in the background.

an unhappy polly pouting with a foggy Devil's Tower in the background

just half of devil's tower.. we were socked in!

all over wyoming they had these crazy boots in the front of yards and businesses. who knows? wyoming is a little strange.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Devil's Tower and what we didn't climb...

so, it rained at Devil's Tower, Wyoming. all weekend, in fact. boo! liz and i drove 9.5 hours to the middle of nowhere wyoming to climb this impressive rock mountain, only to have it rain the whole time! we woke up saturday morning to rain. so we decided to drive over to south dakota to get a bowl of warm soup. if you've ever been to Devil's Tower, you know there is nothing around it. there is no back up plan, there is nothing else to climb. there is mt rushmore and the black hills or the badlands but they are all probably 2 hours away, and you can't really climb there anyway. Devil's Tower is about 50 miles from S. Dakota, so we drove over there to warm up and dry out. it was still raining. so we went into a thrift store we drove by. that was pretty entertaining for about an hour. then we entertained ourselves with ice cream and then drove back to Devil's Tower. by this time it had stopped raining so we got our gear together and ran up to the base of the mountain. it was about 4 pm. liz lead the first pitch of El Cracko Diablo, a wide two pitch classic climb on the tower. by the time i got to the belay ledge it was well on its way to dusk, but liz convinced me to do the second pitch anyway. it was the longest 5.8 i've ever done and it was hard!! we ended up rappelling down in pitch darkness, but at least we had climbed!!!

we had plans to wake up early the next day and climb the Durrance Route, one of the North American 50 Classic Climbs.it is rated at 5.6-5.7, so very easy and about 500 feet tall- you get to the very top of the tower from this route. we woke up to rain. so we slept in some more. when we finally woke up it had stopped raining and we thought we could go for the climb. this climb is very popular, and many new climbers get guided up it. when we arrived at the base of the climb a party of 4 climbers was already on it. one of the climbers was very new to climbing, and it took her a very long time to make it up the second pitch. liz and i started to realize we could never follow this party at that pace and still beat the omminous drizzle cloud making its way toward us. sure enough, 45 minutes later we were engulfed in a drizzle cloud again. bummed out, we decided to just drive home. we only had the next morning left to climb anyway and the forcast was for rain all night. so we packed up the wet tent and drove part of the way home, staying over night at liz's sister's house in southern wyoming. we were pretty bummed out, having driven that far only to hit the only rain storm in the entire west! we did get to climb a little, spent a lot of quality time driving across wyoming, and it ended up an adventure in the end. i am thinking that the odds are, if you are climbing this much, you are bound to get rained out a few times. i had perfect weather last week in the tetons, so maybe i was making up for that! here are a couple pics from Liz's camera. more to follow.

i still can't figure out how to rotate.... this is me at the first belay on El Cracko Diablo, 5.8

Liz and i trying to find something to do in south dakota...a thrift store!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Grand Teton Trip

This past weekend i went to Teton National Park in Wyoming with two great girlfriends, Katie and Joy. Joy's parents live in Jackson so we had a lovely breakfast with them saturday morning and then a really nice hike in to our camp. sunday morning we woke up early and climbed Irene's Arete, a classic 5.8 alpine route up Garnet Canyon. You can pretty much see the Grand Teton the whole time. it was a beautiful day and a perefct climb. we thought we might get rained on at one point, but the clouds passed and we got to finish our route. the next morning (labor day) we woke up extremely early (3 am!!) and climbed the Grand Teton. I've always wanted to climb that chunk of rock! it was a very tiring experience- a long hike (15 miles total that day) and a lot of elevation gain/loss (5-7,000ft). it is a technical climb, rated at around 5.6, with 1,500 feet of vertical climbing invovled. we made it go a lot faster by not roping up. a slightly terrifying experience at times. again, we had a perfect day with not a cloud in the sky. we summited by 9:30am and then hiked all the way back out to our car. Then katie and i still had to drive 5 hours home... i got home at 11:30 pm and had to be at work by 7 the next morning.... i got worked!! but we had an absolutely fantastic time, great weather, and even better fellowship. what a wonderful experience with two awesome women!!

All the pictures:
Grand Teton Trip on PicasaWeb

Rotated Images:

4th pitch of Irene's Arete, 5.8 Teton National Park

4th pitch, look, Blue sky!! that's a happy climber!

Rock fall on the Grand. What you can't see here is the actual Grand Teton -it's behind that dirt cloud! There was some massive rock fall down one of the popular gullies on the Grand. Luckily no one was hurt, although the rocks did destroy some people's tent camping on the moraine. pretty scary! this was the day before our summit of the Grand. our route was not affected.

Joy, Katie, and I on top of the Grand Teton!!!

Katie and I practicing our yoga at a belay ledge on Irene's Arete while waiting out some clouds. we are attempting to salute the sun.

Katie and I climbing towards the summit of the Grand.

Joy, Katie, and I on the top of Irene's Arete. Nez Perce in the background.

Joy finding the way on the Grand.

Joy, Katie and I on the start of the trip- the 4.5 mile hike in.

Katie starting the last pitch of Irene's Arete.

I'm off to Devil's Tower Wyoming this weekend to do some more great climbing!!! Pictures to follow for that too.