Wednesday, August 27, 2008


So Melissa and I were up in Lutsen for the weekend and are headed back up this weekend. We had a great time up there. The weather was perfect and we relaxed. We stayed in the lodge which we have never done and I haven’t done for about 25 years. It was nice. We had a great room. We had all of the windows open so all night long we were listening to the waves crashing on the lake. It was great! I did a little fly fishing in the Cascade River. I didn’t catch anything but it was fun trying. I spoke with another fly fisherman when he was on his way out of the stream and he said that he had caught a couple small trout. So at least I know there are indeed fish in there. I just need to work on my skills. Like I said we are heading back up this weekend and I am going to give it another try so maybe this weekend will be the one.

I did a group mountain bike ride last night at Terrace Oaks in Burnsville. It was a fun ride. I did 3 laps and didn’t bring lights so I was out for the night laps. Which it sounds like the group did 2 of those. I am hoping to get out night riding soon.

Melissa is in the middle of her training for her Iron Girl dualathlon. I think she is going to do great, she is working hard. It is 2 sports instead of 3 like a triathlon. She is running, biking and then running again. I am looking forward to watching her. Her race is September 21st. I will report more on that after the race.

Also Melissa is becoming quite the Cribbage player. We have been playing a lot lately which I love. I love to play Cribbage. My dad taught me how to play and he was a really good player. He and my mom would play for hours and hours while on vacation or just relaxing at night. I loved to play with him I learned a lot of good tricks. I also played a lot with my mom; it was always a great time. She would call me to come over and play. I would get there and there would be a cold soda waiting for me and a pizza in the oven. So we would play for a few hours and share a pizza and have some laughs. I miss doing that a lot. So it is really nice to have a Melissa to play with. I taught her how to play a year or so ago. She is now really getting the game and getting really good. It is fun.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Vacation Recap

Ok, so yes I am still alive and yes we did have an awesome vacation. I have been back now for just a little over 2 weeks and it, well; totally sucks to be back. We had such a great time in Colorado. What a beautiful place. I loved it there. Add it to the list of places I would live. Here is a little recap of the trip:

We left Friday afternoon and drove to Lincoln Nebraska for night 1.

Saturday we got up sort of early and drove to Boulder Colorado where we stayed for 2 nights. I loved Boulder it was so cool. Every thing revolves around the outdoors there. And I mean everything. Every car has a bike rack or a ski rack on it. Everywhere you go there are outdoor gear stores. There are more bike lanes and bikers around then I think I have ever seen. The city had a very cool vibe to it; people were so nice and friendly. We did some fun things; first we took in the Pearl Street mall which I really thought was cool. Lots of cool stores and good places to eat. It was a really neat place. We also drove up to Eldora Ski Resort, which is a little resort about 30 minutes from Boulder. The drive was amazing, up through this great canyon area. There were people parked all over the place, hiking, biking, fishing in the Boulder Creek and rock climbing. It was amazing to see all of the people enjoying the outdoors. We stayed at the Boulder Marriot which was very nice. We had a great room with a nice view of the Flatiron Mountains. We had some great food and Boulder and I was bummed to have to leave.

Monday we headed up to Estes Park Colorado for the next 4 nights, we camped right on the border of Rocky Mountain National Park. We had a great campsite. We were car camping so it wasn’t the most rustic camping in the world but it was perfect. Rocky Mountain National Park is beautiful. The mountains are amazing. There was quite a bit of snow left on them which I was very happy about, it was great to see the snow again. We did a ton of hiking. We did a couple of hikes up to some glacial lakes which were amazing; I have never seen water so clear in my life. It was just a beautiful scene. We also did a summit hike. We did the Flattop Mountain hike, 3500’ of elevation change over 4 miles. It was pretty brutal, but the views were incredible. That was really fun. I did a guided fly-fishing trip which turned out to be incredible. My guide Chad took me to some great spots. We went back into RMNP and fished Glacier Creek, I caught about 15 trout. Most were pretty small, but Chad said that was the case for the fish above 10,000’. But for fish in the 6-8” long man could they fight. It was cool, because I think we went to some places he doesn’t take just anyone. We climbed down some pretty steep cliffs to get to some secluded pools. The whole day we only fished one area where there were people around. After fishing in RMNP he took me to a place just outside of town where he knew there were a couple bigger fish hanging out and we tried to get one. We got into one. A very nice brown trout that was about 13” long. It was cool. A great fight and a lot of fun. If you are ever in the Estes Park area and want to do a fishing trip I recommend Kirk’s Fly Shop.

The trip was all about relaxing and taking in the beautiful views and wishing we lived in the mountains. We had a great time. I would go back out there in a heartbeat.

Friday morning we left sort of bright and early and we drove to Omaha Nebraska and stayed over night. It was nice to be back in a hotel after 4 nights in a tent. We had a great time in Omaha. There was a Cabela’s right across the street from our hotel so we walked over there and browsed around. We had a nice dinner and then went to bed for our drive home the next morning.

Since we have been back we are planning more times to get back out of town and so far we have 3 planned. We are up in Lutsen the next 2 weekends and are going to Chicago again over Thanksgiving weekend for both our annual trip and for Melissa’s big 40th birthday. I can’t wait. Lutsen should be really fun this weekend. We have a couple fun things planned. More on that later.

In other news my friend James is in town from Ireland this week. I rode with James a ton last year and I miss riding with him. It will be good to get back out riding. He and his wife moved to Ireland for 2 years for his job. It sounds like he is having a great time over there and likes it pretty well. They are doing a lot of traveling in Europe which is pretty cool. That is the best part of Europe it is so easy to get around, because you have a lot of options, boats, trains, car, or flying. Anyway it will be great to see him..