Tuesday, December 16, 2014

November a time to run, a time to climb and a time for deep introspection & brooding...

New York, to that tall skyline I come.....

No place is more diverse from the mountains I so love, than the bustling metropolis of New York City.
You cannot help but feel the energy, diversity and intensity of the big city, especially after having lived in sleepy Utica and it's burbs for so long.

Even more so when you're there and an event like the NYC Marathon is going on.  After running this event twice,  I love NYC, but I know I have to look for smaller less congested venues to run. NYC with over 50,000 runners this year(just over 40,000 last year) and several million on-lookers and support staff takes a lot out of you. It was a marathon just getting to the start line after all the travelling the day before and getting up at 3am to make sure to get to the start line on-time.  I felt it was so big an event,  you feel like you become just another number. Just another face flashing by, only to be erased by a mind numbing another runner, and another, and another....Anyway, it is a great event, and I certainly don't want to take anything away from the amazing job that the NY Road Runners and the City of New York did pulling this race off, or from those hoping to run this race.

"And my words won't make a dime's worth a difference, so here's to you New York" `Simon & Garfunkel

In a quieter moment a view of Lady Liberty

The Big City from this little "Bug's" eye view

thanks to marathon photo for this nice capture

the "Big Apple" from Jersey City and the new World Trade Center

a memory of 9-11

A Somber November on Chimney Mt (near Indian Lake-Adirondacks, NY  & West Kill Mts., Catskills, NY)

November can be a cold, brooding and colorless month. So, I find the best remedy is to get outside into nature for a run or a climb. A few weeks after running NY I was afforded the opportunity decompress and to visit charming and cavernous little Chimney Mountain.

 What we thought would be a "shake-out" winter climb in the snow, saw almost the opposite. Although there was an occasional trace of snow, the trail and mountain were very dry and easy to navigate. So, it gave us extra time to explore and stick our heads in a few caves.

A few weeks later on Thanksgiving weekend we headed for the Catskills and West Kill Mountain. We enjoy the Cats but they are different and a little more "well worn" it seems than the Adirondacks. Anyway, there was a good enough amount of snow to utilize crampons but nothing to write home about. I've captioned the photos so I won't bore you anymore with laborious details about the climb, etc. My thought here was to share some of the contrast of a "wood-chucks" experiences in November in NYC and the mountains of Upstate, NY.  ~Cheers
View from summit of Chimney Mt

The "Chimney" on Chimney Mt
wanna race me?
view from Chimney Mt
Farm near Chimney Mt and antique tractor

Diamond Notch Falls on way to West Kill Mt, Catskills, NY

A "zen" moment on West Kill Mt

Nothing more cleansing than a grinding climb in the cold

the nice panorama from just below the sumnmit of West Kill Mountain

found the summit marker after walking by it a couple times

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Fred's House

Fred's House
Time was, the light in Fred's house across the lake was always on. Now it is dark.
In summer,  Fred's laughter resonated over the water as he shared a laugh with friends. Now it is quiet.
At Christmas, we could see Fred through his living room window, smiling and waving from his rocking chair. He would give us a big thumbs up for the lights we put up on a small wild spruce we had growing on our front lawn at Christmas. Now there is only the silhouette of his rocking chair.

Fred's Place, Piseco, NY

Time is elusive, and time can be unkind.
For now, I will reminisce, and court a memory or two.
A memory where Fred's living room  light shines, and his laughter is loud and clear.
A place where we are happily decorating the spruce tree with brilliant christmas lights, and we can see Fred across the lake bathed in the amber glow of his living room waving to us.  Fred has a big smile on his face and he gives us a big thumbs up.