22 October 2015

Turns All Year Month 48 - FOUR YEARS!

People love to hate social media. I get it. It's invasive. It takes the place of real relationships in your life. It causes FOMO....

But it's also kind of awesome. One of the things that I'm really loving lately is #ThrowbackThursday, or #tbt if you're hip (yes, I have to include the hashtag in there, get over it). Facebook has recently embraced is this "memories" thing, where it will show you what happened in your life on 'this day' in previous years, and it provides an opportunity to look back on your life in a way that seems to be very meaningful to people. I know it's meaningful for me.

Last week, I took a personal day to make yet-another visit to Camp Muir on Mt. Rainier to mark my 48th-month of consecutive skiing. On the way I couldn't help but remember my first trip to Muir seven years prior. When I got home, I posted this #tbt to Facebook:
I continue to be humbled and amazed at just how much life has changed. A little over seven years ago I made my first trip to Mt. Rainier to climb to Camp Muir. I was overweight and out of shape, and it took me over five hours (not including breaks) to get to camp. It was the hardest thing I had ever done to date, and I was barely carrying a pack.
Fast forward to yesterday, and I took a personal day to ski for my 48th consecutive month on the same snowfield. With 17lbs of skis + 15lbs of regular gear I made it to Muir in under four hours (including 45 minutes worth of breaks). Then I got to ski down. And it was FUN! We had the mountain to ourselves, the views were spectacular, and there was no suffering.
I think it's neat sometimes to be reminded just where we came from to see just how far we've come. So today for ‪#‎ThrowbackThursday‬ I want to share my original trip report from that first fateful day on Rainier and just say that changing your life is hard in many ways, but finding your happiness is oh-so worth it!

It's easy sometimes to discount the journey. To forget that we weren't always this way. To fail to see just how far we've come. If it takes social media to remind us...I'm all for it.

With the journey in mind, I want to share some photos of my September turns with you - four YEARS of skiing at least one day a month.

And it's only fitting I went on this journey with Theresa. We met just a little over two years ago on Mt. Hood, and since that time Theresa and I have shared 37 days in the mountains. Together we've stood on summits and slept in tents and built backcountry toilets and made camp mac n' cheese and smelled each other's boots in cramped quarters until our eyes watered.

And I've loved every second of it. Because being in the backcountry with someone creates a deep bond of trust. It puts you in a place where you can see your weaknesses and admire someone else's strength. This person - laying next to you - will save your life and risk their own if things go south. There's nothing more important than that.

Maybe I'm getting nostalgic in my "old age", or maybe looking back has forced me to appreciate where I am now and what's ahead. I don't care. I've spent the last 48 months skiing at least one day a month, and I am a better person for it. Thanks to all of you who've come on this journey with me.

Here are my favorite pictures from skiing in October:

The snowfield. My friend Imran asked me if I pooped and smeared it all over. He's not far off from the truth.

Looking down at Mt. Adams. 

Theresa enjoyed a hard earned Ra-nya.

My happy place.

Amar built us all lovely beer coozies.

The smile of a skier who has found some summer corn.

The smile of a skier about to suffer through some summer glacial ice.

Just taking our skis for a walk.

Skiing in October. Who knew it could be THIS good?

Happy crew of TAYers. Amar (13-years), Theresa (5-years), Kristina (4-years)

Sunset on Zee Mountain. Photos never do it justice.

For a more technical trip report, check out my TAY post here.

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