8.19.2012

Dear Tetons...

We have been having a stretch of good weather out here in Jackson, WY, and the climbing has been really good despite a looming cloud of smoke from a westerly wildfire. August is the best month of summer in the Tetons, and we have been trying to take advantage of it as much as possible.
Last week, while climbing with Zach, Matt, and Tom, we met a couple of runners out on Mount Moran who flew by us without any packs or gear. A couple of days later, I ran into the pair at work and learned that they were Kilian Jornet and Emelie Forsberg. They said that they went up the Grand, and the Emelie excitedly told me that Kilian had broken the record for the fastest time up and down! The otherwise modest pair were bursting with energy and smiles. Kilian had just run (and free-soloed) 15.4 miles and over 14,000 vertical feet in just 2 hours and 54 minutes, easily breaking the 29-year-old record of 3:07. He took the Owen-Spalding route which has some very exposed sections of 5.4 climbing... scary stuff to move fast on. I congratulated him on his performance and shook his hand. It was inspiring to meet these two, and I hope they continue to push themselves and the sport of skyrunning.
In other news, MK's work schedule and my own have been conflicting lately because of her trip to Costa Rica, but I was able to get out and do some fun stuff with some other friendly folks. On Thursday, I went up the SW couloir on the Middle Teton with friends Jeff and Erica. We made good time and had a great time along the way! On Friday, my friend Will and I went climbing at Rock Springs Buttress. We took the tram up, and hiked down to the base of the massive granite wall. We spotted a big black bear roaming his territory hundreds of feet below us before he quietly disappeared back into the forest. The temperature was mild and the climbing was great. It was a fun couple of days, but there are still a lot of good days left in the season and a lot of rocks to climb on!

Middle Teton. Southwest Couloir.

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Rock Springs. Tolle Road.

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