Friday, July 30, 2010

Blame It On The Tetons

Job perks:
1.) new smells daily
2.) decreased worry about planning what to do with my weekday evenings
3.) old-fashioned dirty medical stories to tell at dinner parties
4.) CME money and time

I decided to take advantage of perk #4 and head to Wyoming for some medical education and hiking. Although I was super excited about learning about "Safeguarding Sphincters" (an actual lecture title...which I can post on later if there are interested parties), I was a bit more excited about hiking the Teton Crest Trail, mountain biking, and sleeping on the ground for a week.

The wildflowers were still blooming, the days were sunny, the hitch-hiking was easy, the crest trail was relatively unpopulated, and the company was great. I'm proud to say that I now officially have hiking-in-Chacos tan lines.

Queen Anne's Lace

View of the Teton range from Death Canyon Shelf.

Wildflowers blooming

Say Hello to my little friend

Views from Alaska Basin

From Hurricane pass

The reason I carried a large, heavy camera for the trip

The Grand, shrouded in clouds, on a day not for climbing. The week before we were there 16 climbers were rescued after being caught in a morning Thunderstorm

Attempt at self portrait

After finishing up the Crest Trail, Andrew and I left Jackson Hole to do some hiking in the Wind River Range. We stopped in Pinedale for coffee, pancakes as big (and delicious) as your right ass cheek, and a large earful of boomtown politics.

Seated near some local ranchers, now making their fortune off of natural gas, breakfast quickly became a quiet affair. We sat and listened to stories of apocalyptic planning, where not to go in California (south or west of Bakersfield), how to spend your fortune on mail order precious metals, what women are good for, and how Mexico is a bastion of free speech and individual freedom (and apparently where to move if Obama is elected for another term). Sometimes you just have to eavesdrop.

The Winds were beautiful, and had an untamed feeling that you don't get in the National Parks. I want to return with a fishing pole and a pack full of rice and butter for a few weeks of backcountry wandering and trout eating. I want to do this wandering when the mosquitoes have less of a voracious appetite...or maybe with a complete body suit of netting.

Green River Lakes

Crazy lichen

The canyon and another phallic object

1 comment:

  1. My sincere thanks to you for carrying your big, heavy camera along on your rambles. The pictures and your words keep me going over here in the desert.

    I miss you guys, and all those mountainsides, too. So happy to get to follow along a little bit! --Naft