How to Rig Sleds and Influence People

During my first year of grad school, I signed up for a course in winter wilderness skills with the intention of being fully transformed into a badass in the span of one month. It didn’t work, but I did learn one crucial badass skill: how to rig and haul a sled. Continue reading “How to Rig Sleds and Influence People”

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Ugly duckling

It’s funny what makes people feel confident. I’ve heard women say they feel sexy in stilettos or a pair of lacy undies, but both of those things make me feel sort of ridiculous and out of place—the same way some people would feel, I imagine, wearing a pair of crampons.  Continue reading “Ugly duckling”

Smoke ’em if you got ’em

I’ve always had champagne taste and a beer budget, though that’s rarely stopped me from doing what I want—borrowed gear, nights spent in the back of my car, and a healthy relationship with Top Ramen have gotten me to plenty of summits. When it comes to adventure planning, I tend to shoot first and ask questions later.

A few weeks ago, Bix and I got an exciting invitation: a ten-day trip to Hawaii, where we’d run a few legs of a 200-mile relay and backpack in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

We instantly went into trip planning mode. How much would airfare be? Could we get the time off work? Would TSA confiscate our JetBoil? What’s the likelihood of my being eaten by a shark when Bix talks me into taking a crack at surfing? Continue reading “Smoke ’em if you got ’em”

These feet are made for walking

My feet are unsightly—some might even say they’re downright gross—but they’re pretty useful. They’ve been up mountains and down rivers, across glaciers and talus fields, over miles of trail both soggy and dry. I have stuffed them into too-small climbing shoes, smelly ski boots, worn-out trail runners, my beloved Chacos, and, on very rare occasions, a pair of sky-high heels. I rarely have ten toenails.

The week of my wedding, at my best friend’s insistence, I got a pedicure. This was uncharted territory for me.

“Look,” she told me, “If you insist on getting married in those sandals, the least you can do is make your feet presentable.”

“They’re Chacos,” I explained cheerily, “And what’s wrong with my feet?” Continue reading “These feet are made for walking”