I've lived here in Teton Valley, Idaho for 16 years. In those 16 years, so much has changed in the Valley, in my life and in the world. One thing that has mostly remained the same is Aspen Trail. Because we are moving from here soon, every trail I've been on this summer, I think, "This could be the last time I'm here!" Usually this thought fills me with a little spark of happiness. Yesterday on Aspen Trail, I cried a little bit.
This post is a departure from my usual posts. Probably lots of rambling words.
Aspen Trail was the first trail I really explored when I came to the Valley. It's close to town and, unlike most trails around here, it's not very steep with only 1,400 feet of vertical elevation gain and 1,400 feet of vertical loss in its 4.2 mile length. True to its name, Aspen Trail has lots of Aspens.
I took cute, chubby Zane up there in a backpack when he was 2 and a half. I remember struggling with his weight on the hills and struggling with the (very justified) fear of bears. We turned around after less than a mile. Now that chubby two year old is seventeen and could probably carry me right up the hill with no trouble if he wanted to.
|Me, McKenzie and Zane|
|Snowshoeing with Allison|
|Paul ripping downhill past the horse and rider. The lady on the horse was impressed!|
My fitness and health have changed so much over the years. There have been times that going up every hill was a challenge. Sometimes, lately, every hill is bliss. There were times I kicked guys asses going downhill on a mountain bike. There were times that I wished I could run the whole thing from start to finish. I progressed to easily running it from start to finish and then went about my day like it was no big deal, at points, it was a HUGE deal. Once, I ran it in Croc's because of a pain in my foot that turned out to be a broken hip.
|This looked like a spot where a doglike creature slept. A wolf perhaps?|
|One of the biggest piles of shit I've ever seen.|
|Because the print has no kidney bean shape and the toes are almost straight across, I'm thinking these were from a grizz.|
Aspen Trail is beautiful. I will miss it.
The changes that are coming up are good. They are scary. They are exciting. You can be sure when I come back to Teton Valley, I will visit Aspen Trail and love it as much as I did the first time I was on it.
End of my rambling. Lots and lots and lots of pictures to follow.
|My favorite section of trail, I smile EVERY time I get to this spot.|
|Pigeon shooters, beer drinkers and litterers spent some time at the trail head.|
|Don't mess with my trail head!|
|Spring, muddy and slippery|
MOST OF THE PICTURES BELOW ARE FROM APPROXIMATELY THE SAME SPOT
|Really early spring|
|Too much snow to run in the Big Holes, perfect on Aspen Trail|
|A cloudy late spring, early summer day. Looking at Driggs|
|Aspen leaf carpet|
|A section of trail Zane helped create|
|Sunset in the fall|
|One of a few dogs who has joined me on the trail. Definitely the most enthusiastic. I call her Bear Bait.|
|The result of M's amazing fall.|
|Me sliding into a tree well, trying to take a picture of myself.|
|Spring is coming, really!|
|I went through an entire summer taking pictures of myself jumping off of things. It was pretty fun.|
|Dorkiest shot of me ever. Can you tell how much I was enjoying doing it? Too much.|