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InThisIssue

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✓ Hiking ✓ Camping ✓ Running ✓ Cycling ❑ Climbing

Are you ready to try something new?

p.6 / From the Editor By Jon Snyder

www.outtheremonthly.com

p.7 / Out There News Permaculture Conference, Mountain Gear Bike Friendly Award, November Film Festivals, Big Rock Purchase Finalized

p.9 / Health & Fitness Blood Clot Issue Pt. 1: How Does It Happen In An Active Adult? By Dr. Bob Lutz

p.10 / What’s Your Gear? Mara Geffken: Skate Skiing By Amy Silbernagel McCaffree

Day Hiking Columbia River Gorge and K2 Tragedy By Stan Miller and Peter G. Williams

p.12 / PUNISH STUFF Ortlieb Panniers Gear Review By John Speare

p.13 / Everyday cyclist Blood Clot Issue Pt. 2: Don’t Be

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Stupid About Hydration By John Speare

p.14 / Sustainable Living How Can You Invest In Local Small

Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

Jon Snyder jon@outtheremonthly.com Art Director

Kaitlin Snyder Managing Editor

Health & Fitness Editor

Dr. Bob Lutz senior writers

Jon Jonckers, Derrick Knowles Contributing Writers:

Lisa Jonckers, Sherry LaBonte, Stan Miller, Richard Orndorff, Erika Prins, Juliet Sinisterra, John Speare, Peter G. Williams Distribution Coordinator

Barbara Snyder To request issues please call 509 / 534 / 3347 Ad Sales

Bill Bloom: 509 / 999 / 8214 Out There Monthly

Mailing Address: PO Box 559 Spokane, WA 99210 www.outtheremonthly.com, 509 / 534 / 3347 Out There Monthly is published once a month by Snyderco DBA/Out There Monthly. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent of the publisher. ©Copyright 2011 Snyderco DBA/Out There Monthly. The views expressed in this magazine reflect those of the writers and advertisers and not necessarily Snyderco DBA/Out There Monthly.

The super-light, low- profile designs get you closer to the earth and deliver a number of positive benefits while you are having fun outside

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Disclaimer: Many of the activities depicted in this magazine carry a significant risk of personal injury or death. Rock climbing, river rafting, snow sports, kayaking, cycling, canoeing and backcountry activities are inherently dangerous. The owners and contributors to Out There Monthly do not recommend that anyone participate in these activities unless they are experts or seek qualified professional instruction and/or guidance, and are knowledgeable about the risks, and are personally willing to assume all responsibility associated with those risks.

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Out There Monthly / November 2011

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p.11 /  Book Reviews

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Bike Or Security Threat?

p.22 / Last Page Reading The Rocks In Montana By Richard Orndorff & Sherry LaBonte

On the cover: Lisa Bliss crossing Death Valley, California with her Elephant trailer. // Photo Tim Englund.

November 2011

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FromtheEditor: Bike or security threat? The bike rack has been removed from the downtown post office on the northwest corner of Lincoln and Riverside. I know this because I use it every couple days and a week ago it disappeared. I had to choose whether to lock up to the stair railing or a parking sign instead. I chose the parking sign. Inadequate bicycle parking, either poorly designed, poorly placed, or non-existent is an unsung factor in discouraging bicycle use. I went inside to inquire at the General Services Administration (GSA) office, which manages the building. I was told that a Federal Judge temporarily housed in the building ordered the

bike rack removed for “security reasons.” The trashcans by the PO boxes were also removed for the same reason. I mentioned this situation to friends. Comments ranged from, “Jon, bicycle gangs are notorious for terrorizing postal stations—we cannot be too careful, “ to, “I used that bike rack at least three times a week—dang it.” Two years ago I remember reading a news story about a bicycle bomb in Iraq. How depressing that a bicycle, still a liberating and beneficial device, could be used for evil—in this case killing two innocent people at a restaurant. On August 4th the Spokane Bomb Squad was called to

investigate a bicycle locked in the breezeway next to the federal courthouse. The bike was found to contain no explosive elements. The same 2009 Iraq bike bomb article also covered a car bomb detonated the day before— death toll at 101 and counting with over 500 wounded. It’s tempting to make a remark about the higher instances of automobiles downtown, including those that pull up to the Post Office every few minutes to drop off mail. But then I remember another date: September 7 of this year. That’s when Kevin Harpham plead guilty to planting a backpack bomb at this year’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade. Now the whole town,

understandably, is looking for bombs in new places. See something, say something. Yesterday at the Post Office I saw four bikes all locked up to signs at the entrance. A fifth bike was inside next to the PO Boxes. The GSA told me they might relocate the rack. I hope so. Bikes are no more deserving the taint of a bomb delivery device than cars are. I own both and like to use them downtown. // -------------------------------------------------------JON SNYDER, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF editor@outtheremonthly.com P.S. Check out the digital edition of this month’s mag at issuu.com; search “Out There Monthly.”

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OutThereNews Banff Mountain & Backcountry Two Great Film Festivals This Month

MT. Gear Gets Bike-Friendly awaRD For the third year in a row, Mountain Gear has been honored as a Silver level bicycle friendly business by the League of American Bicyclists. Showing up to work a little sweaty while wearing spandex and lycra from a commute or after a morning ride up Mount Spokane isn’t just tolerated—it’s encouraged. Mountain Gear promotes a cycle-friendly culture for its employees by offering showers, indoor bike parking, and rewards to employees who bike to work, in addition to participating in local bike advocacy. “We’re very excited to be leading the growing bike culture here in the Spokane area,” says Mountain Gear President Paul Fish.

Employees of Mountain Gear are further encouraged through Mountain Gear’s employee bike purchase program. Coordinated with Two Wheel Transit in Spokane, the program has helped outfit over 60 employees and employee family members with new bikes. “We feel the bike purchase program is one of our most successful efforts to encourage cycling at Mountain Gear,” says Fish. Other designated “Bike Friendly Businesses” in Spokane are Coffman Engineers, Inc. and Rings and Things, both bronze level. // For more information on the Bike Friendly Business Program, visit www.bikeleague.org.

Mother Nature at Her Best

still from the backcountry film fest movie Powderwhore. // photo © powderwhore.com.

Getting together with a group of friends to watch inspiring outdoor films is one of the best ways to motivate yourself to action in the often wet and cold shoulder month of November. This year Spokane has two back-to-back weekend festivals that will get you stoked and your blood pumping just in time for a new season of winter snow sports. Backcountry Film Festival, Friday, Nov. 11, at Gonzaga University’s Jepson Center (Wolfe Auditorium) Presented by Stevens Peak Backcountry Alliance, Gonzaga Outdoors and the Spokane Mountaineers, the festival’s focus is on films that highlight the thrill and adventure of human-powered winter sports and a passionate pursuit of conservation. This is the festival to check out the newest soulful ski films from the legendary likes of Powderwhore and Sweetgrass Productions. Submissions to the festival come from renowned filmmakers—who travel every corner of the globe to submit their best backcountry work—and from grassroots filmmakers who take a video camera out on their weekend excursions and submit their best film short. The festival was created by the Winter

Wildlands Alliance to highlight its efforts to preserve and conserve winter landscapes for quiet users. The Spokane showing is also helping to support the local work of the Stevens Peak Backcountry Alliance to help save the Stevens Peak area near Lookout Pass for backcountry skiers and snowshoers and to help educate people about avalanche safety and backcountry ethics. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $7, or $3 with student I.D. at the door or at http://commerce.cashnet.com/guoutdoors and will get you entered into a drawing for some incredible door prizes. For more info, call (509) 624-7120. Banff Mountan Film Festival in Spokane November 18, 19, 20 at the Bing Crosby Theater For well over a decade, Mountain Gear has brought the best of the Banff Mountain Film Festival films to town for a three-night extravaganza of exhilarating and inspiring films that range from adrenaline-charged adventure films to mountain culture and nature inspired documentaries. Get your tickets for one night or the whole weekend at Mountain Gear, mountaingear. com, or call (509) 325-9000—they typically sell out fast. //

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OutThereNews Big rock purchase finalized Dream Trail Takes Shape In Dishman Hills

big rock southwest of spokane. // photo courtesy Dishman Hills Natural Area Association.

Spokane County’s Conservation Futures program will purchase Big Rock, a 200-foot tall climbing area, from the Dishman Hills Natural Area Association early this month. Big Rock will join adjacent Iller Creek Conservation Futures Area to comprise a 1,146 square foot chunk of county conservation and recreation land near the Dishman Hills Natural Area in Spokane Valley. The County has been eyeing Big Rock since its first round of land acquisitions. “The Conservation Futures program, in their first round of nominations in 1994, ranked Big Rock as their main target,” says Jeff Lambert, Dishman Hills Natural Area Association (DHNAA) vice president. DHNAA hopes to expand the Dishman Hills conservation area to include about 3,000 acres of land, including a 12-mile “Dream Trail,” by purchasing land itself and through Conservation Futures purchases. Ownership of the area currently lies with private owners, developers, Spokane County, DHNAA and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Unable to reach an agreement with the property owner in 1994, the Conservation Futures program did not acquire the Big Rock property then. In 2009, DHNAA acquired the property through a land trade. “All along, we had planned on then transferring that to the Conservation Futures program at its appraised value,” says Lambert. Two improvements will accompany Big Rock’s sale. This fall, DHNAA has converted Stevens Creek Road from a trail to a county-approved road. In the spring, the County will build a minimum 10,000 square foot parking lot at the end of Stevens Creek road at Big Rock. Of the $439,250 selling price, DHNAA will donate just under $108,000 back to Conservation Futures to fund the parking lot’s construction and invest around $30,000 in road improvements 8

Out There Monthly / November 2011

prior to sale. Last year, they invested an additional $130,000 to purchase the 10-acre property on which the parking lot will be built. Currently, climbers can only access Big Rock from the Iller Creek Conservation Area about a mile and a half away. “One of the benefits [of the Big Rock purchase] is our ability to provide long-term care and maintenance of the property, and that includes care and maintenance of the trailhead,” says Doug Chase, director of Spokane County Parks, Recreation & Golf. Conservation Futures expects to purchase two more properties in the Dishman Hills Natural Area next April, both of which were proposed by DHNAA. The first, known as the Stone Estate, will add 160 acres of county property to the Dishman Hills Natural Area. Conservation Futures will purchase one 120-acre parcel for $222,500. DHNAA will purchase an adjacent 40-acre parcel for $257,500 and convey the land to the County upon signing. DHNAA’s land donation pledge helped bump the property to the top of the Conservation Futures priority list, says Chase. “Without question, it helped this already competitive nomination become more competitive.” Conservation Futures moved the McCollum property, currently owned by DNR, from its 12thplace ranking on their priority list to 4th because it lies adjacent to the Stone Estate and would provide an access point to the land. Purchase of the Stone Estate and the McCollum property are contingent on one another. //

Join DHNAA for their 45th Anniversary Celebration, Nov. 12th, 5 pm at the Moran Prairie Grange, 6006 S. Palouse Hwy. For details, call 509.999.5100. For more information about the Dishman Hills Natural Area, visit dhnaa.org and spokanecounty.org.

Permaculture Conference at SFCC Gathering takes Place November 4-6 Catch some or all of the four-day Inland Northwest Permaculture Conference at Spokane Falls Community College Nov. 4-6. Presenters from around the region will offer seminars, workshops and field trips to highlight their area of expertise in the field of permaculture. “Permaculture is creating bits of paradise where you live,” says event organizer Michael Pilarski. To be more specific, the permaculture movement includes building natural homes, growing one’s own food, catching rainwater and anything else that makes ecosystems with humans in them self-sustaining. Many local permaculture enthusiasts work to replace traditional lawn and landscaping with gardens and edible plants, including fruits, nut trees, and greens. “Our region and Spokane are facing a lot of problems—crises, we could even call them,” says Pilarski. “The economic downturn is a problem, the declining ecosystem is a problem, climate change is a problem . . . Permaculture has strategies to improve those situations.” Yes, permaculturists even promise to improve the economy with a hyper-localized approach to consumerism. “We as a culture need to be geared more toward our local agriculture, more local economy in the

sense of being able to look people in the eye,” says Gabriel Gaul, another event organizer. Both Gaul and Polinski are Inland Northwest Permaculture board members. If you can’t make all four days of the conference, Gaul recommends prioritizing the Friday field trip to Spokane resident Robert Swanson’s “forest garden,” a ground-covered garden in which Swanson grows a wealth of fruit and vegetables. Gaul also recommends attending morning yoga sessions to kick-start the day. Attendees build their own schedule by choosing between numerous simultaneous workshops and activities each day. “There’s a lot of people who are going to be coming together and sharing and networking, and you’re going to be able to look a lot of local farmers in the eye and see who is growing your food,” says Gaul. “You’re going to be able to network with a lot of like-minded people.” //

For conference details and registration visit inlandnorthwestpermaculture.com.

The only painter in Spokane who has completed an Ironman. Now that’s dedication!

Photo of the Month Send your vertical oriented, outdoor photo, 3 meg or less, with caption to editor@outtheremonthly.com. Deadline for November 10/18/11. Winner get’s an OTM carabiner. Congratulations to Brook Ellingwood, who won October’s photo of the month and recieves a 6pack Saddlebag prototype. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. By entering the contest you grant non-exclusive rights to Out There Monthly to publish your photo in our Photo of the Month feature. See page 21 for more details.


Cool Gi fts, Toys an d More

HealthandFitness The Blood Clot issue pt. 1

How Did A Healthy Cyclist Develop A Life-Threatening Condition? / By Dr. Bob Lutz or other organs—all potentially life threatening events and, at the minimum, not good. In people who commonly push their bodies to the limits (sound familiar?), these pains may be gaffed off as simply a cramp or strain—take a few Advil and see what happens. But in John’s case, dehydration provided the deal-breaker for him as he had an unknown genetic risk factor making him more susceptible. Dehydration can make your blood relatively thicker than normal, and increases the risk for clots. Again, however, it’s not common enough to worry about a clot every time your legs feel like #*&%. But if it’s a recurring theme of your workouts, then it’s something to think about and you should be aware of the major risk factors:

john’s legs. Notice swelling on one side. // Photo john speare.

I did not think I would ever be writing about blood clots, aka thrombi, for OTM. But when John Speare came to see me, saying his calf hurt after a hard ride, and asked, “Could it be a blood clot?” and I said “NO way!”— considering what he normally does for fun—I learned a valuable lesson. Go figure, athletes can get blood clots, although thankfully it’s uncommon. But John knew things weren’t normal and that’s the first take-home message: listen to your body, even if your healthcare provider tells you “It’s normal… don’t worry.” But I know you want to learn more about clots.

Dehydration can make your blood relatively thicker than normal, and increases the risk for clots. Blood is composed of fluid (plasma), cells and platelets (cell fragments). Normally, it maintains a fine balance between flowing and clotting; it needs to flow smoothly to do what it does— transport oxygen and nutrients throughout the body and remove metabolic wastes from organs and tissues. It also needs to clot when a vessel is damaged. This occurs through an elaborate cascading system of clotting factors and platelets that, in most cases, work well to ensure you don’t bleed out when you crash. But sometimes things don’t work quite right and clots form when and where they’re not supposed to. Most commonly, this occurs in the deep veins of the leg and is referred to as a “deep venous thrombosis,” or a DVT. The big concern is having a piece of the clot break off, or embolize, and travel to the lung (pulmony embolus), the brain (embolic stroke)

• Age (typically >60) • Tobacco • Prolonged sitting (e.g., traveling) and inac- tivity • Obesity • Medications (e.g., birth control pills) • Recent surgery • Family history and/or clotting disorders When clots do occur, the most common symptoms are pain—typically in the calf, thigh or behind the knee—swelling and tenderness. It may feel like a cramp at first, but if it’s there for a while, the pain can get a lot worse. Thankfully, most people don’t wait this long and look for an answer that a good physical exam can often diagnose and confirm with an ultrasound. Once diagnosed, “blood thinners” are used to both dissolve the clot and prevent another from forming. Activity, as John learned, is often backed off a bit. Then the reason for the clot and the potential for recurrence need to be determined. If the first question is answered and there is low risk for recurrence, then typically a few months of medications are called for and that will probably be it. If no obvious explanation is found and/or there is risk for recurrence, then meds and/or activity modifications may be the long course of action. So what is the second take-home message? Blood clots are rare but do occur, even in athletes and others who don’t fit the picture I learned in medical school, as there’s sometimes the unknown risk factor that has to be factored into the equation. So if you find yourself, like John did, with more questions than answers and it’s because of pain in your calf or leg and/or swelling in your ankle, then remember his story. Don’t wait for it to get better on its own. Listen to your body. You may be wrong, but this is one of those times when it’s better having someone tell you you’re wrong than finding out the hard way. //

Read the second part of this story in Everyday

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What’sYourGear: Mara Geffken (skate skiing)

mara and family ready to go.

How do you take along a baby on a Nordic ski trail? (This isn’t the beginning of a corny joke.) Mara Geffken, a skate skier for the past 13 years, tows her baby—now toddler—on the trail. As a mom of two young boys (ages 4½ and 1½), who also works as a Physician Assistant in Dermatology, she says the key to making her skate skiing a priority is scheduling it into her week. Along with her husband, Daryl, they make it a family adventure. “We go up to Mount Spokane most weekends and then take longer trips to Winthrop,” she says. Some of her favorite places include segments of

the Community Nordic ski trail in Winthrop and the great vista on the way to Shadow Mountain at Mount Spokane. What Mara enjoys best about skate skiing is “working hard while seeing the amazing creation around [me]” and “amazing vistas at the top of hard climbs.” Her most memorable ski trip was the first time she took her oldest son, Tyler, to Winthrop and pulled him behind in the Chariot—an all-terrain baby stroller chassis that can convert to a Nordic ski sled. “The sun was shining off the snow. He loved it when we stopped so he could roll in the snow and eat it,” she says. “The pace slowed down, but it was great to see him enjoying being out with us.” Pre-kids, Mara went skate skiing at least once during most weekends. Post-kids, she may not go as often but has pursued her sport by pulling her kids behind her while skiing (when they are younger than three years old), and then “getting them out on skis and/or a sled when they are older.” (She says that pulling a child in the Chariot is hard work.) “They are fairly patient but we take shorter loops and let them be a part of the skiing. And then we can always take more loops later,” Mara says about what works best when taking her young kids on the trail. “We will also have one person stay with the kids while they play in the snow while one of us skis and then switch off.” Mara is wise about the physical limits and family safety. “We were at Sun Mountain in Methow Valley and decided to take a longer ski route up Thomas Road,” she says about a family ski trip,

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prior to having children. “Little did we know that you climb all the way up for several miles. We kept expecting it to end, and we would turn a corner and see more hill straight up. On skate skis, the hardest workout is up hills—so needless to say, all of us were out of breath, low blood sugar and ready to collapse. We had not brought much to eat and we were all excited to head down the hill for rest and replenishment. Now it is a family

“We kept expecting it to end, and we would turn a corner and see more hill straight up.” joke that if something is long, hard or arduous we state it is a ‘Thomas Road.’ We have been back several times with kids and have gone part way up just to remind ourselves of the work of that day.” In addition to skate skiing, Mara also enjoys snowshoeing and alpine skiing in the winter—in addition to sledding, running, walking and building snowmen. In the summer, she enjoys biking, swimming, running, hiking, sports in the park and triathlons. Here is the gear you will see this fit mama using on the Nordic trails. -------------------------------------------------SKIS, BOOTS, & POLES: Fisher SRC skate skis, Fisher boots, and Swix poles. -------------------------------------------------------

SKI WAX: Swix. ------------------------------------------------------COAT: Mara wears several different brands (e.g., North Face, Mountain Hardwear and Pearl Izumi), especially if it has Windstopper® (windproofing) in its design. ------------------------------------------------------HAT: A lightweight Isis brand, because she gets warm while skiing. ------------------------------------------------------GLOVES: Toko Nordic, “claw” style gloves “because my hands are one part of my body that stays cold,” she says. ------------------------------------------------------PANTS: SportHill XC. ------------------------------------------------------SOCKS: “Any warm, non-wool sock works for me,” says Mara. ------------------------------------------------------UNDERLAYERS: Under Armour or Hot Chilly – for warmth. ------------------------------------------------------SUNGLASSES: To protect from the wind as well as sunlight, Mara wears an Oakley brand with interchangeable lenses, so she can still wear them on cloudy days and not have them be too dark. ------------------------------------------------------BACKPACK: Kelty hydration pack with extra clothing layers tucked inside, as well as Nugo protein bars, granola bars, hard candy, water and sunscreen. ------------------------------------------------------CHILD CARRIER: Chariot Cougar I with the ski attachment. //

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Partial funding provided by a grant from the Washington State Department of Ecology.


BookReviews

One Mountain, Thousand Summits Freddie Wilkenson, NAL, 2010, 352 pages

Day Hiking Columbia River Gorge Craig Romano, The Mountaineers Books, 2011, 288 pages

I am writing this book review as I travel by train through the Columbia River Gorge. Every time I visit this area I am reminded of its other worldly beauty. In addition to providing the detailed information you need to enjoy all of the hiking and natural wonders that the area has to offer, Craig Romano’s book captures the magic of the Gorge. For example, in the preface he states, “Nowhere else in America does one of her mightiest and longest rivers slice through one of her longest and most dramatic mountain chains…and nowhere else in the country are there so many waterfalls, nor is there such a dramatic shift from wet, saturated coastal mountains to arid, sun-kissed flowered bluffs.” This guidebook describes day hikes from the Portland/Vancouver area in the west to The Dalles area in the east. Each hike is provided with two ratings: a rating based on overall appeal, and a score that describes the difficulty of the hike. The overall rating, as described by the author, “is based on scenic beauty, natural wonder, and other unique qualities, such as solitude potential and wildlife-viewing opportunities.” In addition to an extremely well-organized layout of hiking information, complete with helpful maps and great photographs, Romano also provides fascinating details concerning the natural history and the human history of the area. For example, in describing Horsethief Butte, he states, “Created by ancient lava flows and carved by floods of biblical proportions, the butte is an excellent place to contemplate the region’s fascinating natural history.” Having recently moved to Vancouver,Wash., I explored several of the hikes in Clark County. One particularly enjoyable hike was along the East Fork of the Lewis River in Lewisville Regional Park. This is a beautiful natural area, highlighted with huge old-growth fir trees. The guidebook proved to be spot on in its directions, description and hiking details. I highly recommend this book for anyone who enjoys hiking. Some of the hikes in this guidebook are only a four-hour drive from Spokane. If you haven’t explored the Columbia River Gorge, this is a great book to get you inspired and prepared. // Peter G. Williams

As you read this review, the author of One Mountain, Thousand Summits will be discussing his work at the Banff Mountain Book Festival. Those attending his “seminar” on November 2, 2011 will have an opportunity to gain a firsthand look at the how this potentially award-winning work was born. The death of eleven climbers on K2 in August 2008 made it one of the worst single events in Himalayan climbing history. The event made headlines around the world; Wilkenson was upset by the overall tone of the mainstream media coverage. One Mountain is his attempt to set the record straight. Where world media coverage focused on the carnage in the deaths of nine Western climb-

Where world media coverage focused on the carnage in the deaths of nine Western climbers and two sherpas, Wilkenson dug behind the headlines. ers and two sherpas, Wilkenson dug behind the headlines to reveal a story of heroism and professionalism among the climbing guides. One Mountain, though covering the same events as Graham Bowley’s No Way Down carries an entirely different tone. Where Bowley limits his work to the “interpretation” of information gleaned from interviews with the surviving climbers, Wilkenson uses his climbing background to place the interviewee’s fogged recollections into a whole, consistent with his experience. Nor does he seem to fret about the jargon of climbing. He writes in a style consistent with modern climbing narratives and develops credibility for it. Unlike the mainstream media, which relied on a few online sources sponsored by some of the expeditions on the mountain and which focused on the fate of the Western climbers, Wilkenson viewed the overall struggle for survival. He includes the “big picture” on the mountain that day but concentrates on the actions of a small group of sherpa climbers attached as guides for the organized groups. Adding in-depth interviews with the surviving sherpas to those of the surviving climbers and the families of the deceased, Wilkenson is able to provide a complete picture of the events on K2—“the savage mountain”—that August. In doing so, he creates an important historic account and a tribute to the skill and professionalism of the 21st-century Sherpa climbing community. // Stan Miller

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PunishStuff The Best panniers you can get Ortlieb Sets The Standard / By John Speare Thank you to the 600 volunteers at the 9TH Annual Spokane River Clean-Up who picked up 5 tons of trash, of which 1 ton was recycled.

If you pay attention to the panniers that most epic touring cyclists use, you’ll see a lot of Ortlieb. Further, if you commute or tour enough in all weather, eventually you will probably end up with Ortlieb panniers. There are very few undisputed “best” items in the bike world, but Ortlieb panniers are certainly a contender for the least-disputed of the “best.” Ortlieb Front-Roller Classic (Pair)

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Summary • Price: $143 • Pros: waterproof, best attachment system ever, repairable. • Cons: no internal pockets, slightly clumpy off the bike. • Website: ortliebusa.com

neered Ortlieb’s attachment system is. When you buy the Ortliebs, you only need to spend 10 minutes or so adjusting the hooks to fit your rack perfectly. Once you do that, you’re golden: yank the loop handle to open the top hooks and slide the bottom hook onto the rack and the pannier is attached to the rack. Really attached. You can pick up the bike by grabbing the pannier and the pannier will stay attached. To release the hooks, grab the handle and yank the pannier off the bike. Do it for a week and you’ll be a pro: on and off in seconds. DURABLE AND REPAIRABLE: I have a buddy in Seattle who commuted daily with his Ortlieb panniers for ten years before one started to show some fabric wear. There was a small hole emerging near the bottom of the bag. Using the Ortlieb repair kit,

Special Thanks To: City of Spokane, Northwest Whitewater Association, Earthworks Recycling, Jensen Distribution Services, American On-Site Services, Spokane Transit Authority, Gonzaga Environmental Law Caucus, Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters, Rings & Things, Spokane Fly Fishers, Spokane Canoe & Kayak Club, The Lands Council, Sticker Shock, The Inlander, Down to Earth, Roast House Coffee, Spokane Riverkeeper, Pacific Materials Exchange, D’Zaar Catering, Indaba Coffee, Taste of India, Boo Radley’s, Yarrow Yoga

Through these tough economic times Richard Rush has: • balanced budgets • maintained city services • fought for relief for 60% of utility ratepayers • enhanced public safety by creating the Spokane Municipal Court and the Office of Police Ombudsman • positioned Spokane for a prosperous future We need Richard’s experience and hard work today, and for the next four years.

Ortlieb makes a bunch of bike-related baggage— rear panniers, front panniers, handlebar bags, seat bags, back packs—and they’re all mostly good. But the Front-Roller Classic panniers may just be the perfect daily-driver commuter pannier. The naming of the “Front-Roller Classic” refers to the fact that the sizing is more appropriate for front low-rider racks. But the Rear-Rollers are too big for most daily commuters. The “roller” part refers to how the bag closes: you roll the opening and buckle it. The “classic” part means that it’s not the fancy “plus” version. The plus version has a slightly better hook system to attach the bags to your bike. There are a number of features that make Ortlieb panniers the best ones out there. Here they are. WATERPROOF: I can’t find the word “submersible” on the Ortlieb website, but I’m thinking you could just about submerse these guys and keep the contents dry. The buckled, roll-top closure, combined with super-tough rubbery fabric provides more insurance than any cyclist can ask for against leaking water. There is a reason just about every cyclist in Seattle packs his or her laptop in an Ortlieb. Ortliebs are truly waterproof.

Paid for by Snyderco, DBA, Box 559 Paid for OTM, by FriendsPO of Richard Rush Spokane 99210 PO Box 714WA Spokane, WA 99210

12

Out There Monthly / November 2011

CRAZY-PERFECT ATTACHMENT SYSTEM: You just have to mess with every other stupid claspy hook system to appreciate how well engi-

he patched the hole, and he has another four years on them—and they’re still going strong. CHEAP: What? You say $143 is not cheap? Read the previous paragraph again and do some math. SMART FEATURES: Shoulder strap, huge reflector, backpack feature. These probably don’t sound that smart. But they are. The shoulder strap also acts as an additional tie-down for the roll top. And if you don’t want the strap on there, the resulting buckles provide the additional tie-down. The reflector is a huge 3M triangle fused onto the fabric. It won’t fall off, break or degrade. The backpack feature is an add-on ($38) that transforms the pannier into a passable backpack, which provides you with a waterproof backpack in non-biking scenarios. THE CONS A couple things aren’t great about these panniers. First, some people like pockets. If you like pockets, you may not love the Ortlieb panniers as I do. Secondly, off the bike, these panniers are a bit clunky. Both sides of the bags have plastic hooks that like to gouge into your side if they’re weighted and hanging off your shoulder. That’s it though for “cons.” Really. So the bottom line: if you need panniers, don’t bother with other brands. Just get Ortlieb. //


EverydayCyclist

http://cyclingspokane.blogspot.com

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The Blood Clot Issue Pt. 2

Don’t Be Stupid About Hydration / By John Speare I have a blot clot. Until now, any thought I had about blood clots (did I even have any?) would have assumed that clots are reserved for sedentary old people. I’m 40, which as any 50-year-old person will tell you, isn’t old. And while I’m no Olympic athlete, I’m hardly sedentary.

So what happened here? And can it happen to young, fit you? Maybe. Here’s what happened. I have a history of cramping in my left calf. Sometimes the cramp is on the bike, but usually it’s nocturnal. I’ll be sleeping and will be jolted awake by screaming pain in my calf, which is contracted into a hard, leg-shaped, flesh-covered rock. I also have a history of being totally stupid about hydration, especially in the summer. A typical day in the summer may start with a strenuous trail ride at dawn, followed by two or three cups of coffee. Commute to work. Work. Commute home the long way with a single water bottle. Run out of water. Have dinner. Have a few beers. Go to bed. Repeat. Altogether, I’m drinking about two quarts of water a day (in addition to coffee and beer). As it turns out, coffee is not the diuretic it’s often accused of being. But beer is a dehydrator for sure. The point here—and any cyclist who has ridden for a few years has been through this—is that occasional cramping and dehydration happens. So when my calf was killing me during cyclocross “hot lap” training, I didn’t think much of it. But the pain became so bad that I actually had to quit riding. The day had been a typical summer day of inadequate hydration, and I was riding a new bike that didn’t quite fit right, so I chalked up the pain to these obvious factors. I called a nurse and talked her through the issue. She asked a lot of questions about numbness (none), feelings of “pins and needles” (nope), any traumatic events to the calf (nope), any long flights recently (nope), any sharp pain (not really: a dull pain, but not “sharp”). Looking back on this conversation, she was clearly attempting to figure out if I had a clot. Neither my profile (active, non-sitter) nor my answers pointed to a clot. She said it’s likely a muscle strain and recommended taking ibuprofen, drinking lots of water and applying ice. The next day, my calf was a bit swollen and the pain had increased a bit. Luckily, Dr. Bob (OTM Health writer) lives right out my back gate. I asked

him to look at it. He was also perplexed and was pondering a theory that I may have compartment syndrome, which is when muscles and veins can get compacted, which leads to swelling. He recommended keeping on ice but coming off the ibuprofen. By the next morning my calf was so swollen that my ankle went missing. My lower leg looked like a giant sausage. When I called Dr. Bob, he had already decided that things just didn’t add up. He took a look at it and got me in the pipeline for a sonogram, which confirmed a blood clot running from my ankle up into my thigh. There are a few lessons here. The biggest one is not to ignore your wife. My wife was concerned about a potential clot the night I came home from the hot laps. But I didn’t fit the profile. And the nurse didn’t think so. And the doctor didn’t think so. I did know, deep down, that this pain was abnormal. And that’s the real lesson: listen to your body. It’s cliché, but no one knows your

By the next morning my calf was so swollen that my ankle went missing. My lower leg looked like a giant sausage. body like you do, and our bodies are super loud and clear about laying out the facts for us. So why did this happen? Until recently, my going theory has been my chronic dehydration, which turns out to be a contributing factor. In addition, I’ve learned that I have a blood deficiency called Factor V Leiden that slightly increases the odds of a clot. That deficiency alone is not enough to cause a clot. But the Factor V Leiden coupled with blood restriction and the dehydration is likely the answer. Until my leg swelled up, I didn’t pay attention to the fact that when I sit at my desk, I typically sit with my left leg folded under my right leg. The fix for a clot is to take a blood thinner, which both stabilizes the clot and allows blood flow around the clot. Stabilizing the clot is important because if a clot chunk blows off into the blood stream, really bad stuff can happen, like strokes, brain aneurysms and lung failure. It will probably take about six months of blood thinning treatment for the clot to dissolve away. During this time, I’ll have to be extra careful on my bike, as internal bleeding is more likely with trauma events and much harder to contain with thin blood. In the end, I’m lucky. I’m lucky I have access to medical care. I’m lucky I didn’t throw a clot into my blood stream. I’m lucky I’ll be back to normal in six months. It could have been much different. I hope I’ve finally learned to respect what my body is telling me. // {Read Pt. 1 on pg 9--ed.} John Speare grew up and lives in Spokane. He rides his bike everywhere. Check out his blog at http://cyclingspokane.blogspot.com.

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GoGreen: SustainableLiving

How can you invest in local Small Businesses? Local Investment Opportunities Network Has A Plan / By Juliet Sinisterra

Ryan and tom of mt. townsend creamery in port townsend, WA. // Photo: Pamela trail.

“Inspire, connect, invest.” That’s the motto for the national Slow Money Alliance. The concept started with a book written by Woody Tasch in 2008, Inquiries Into the Nature of Slow Money– Investing as if Food, Farms and Fertility Mattered. The book led to the formation of a nonprofit organization, which led to developing sources of capital for small food enterprises, organic farms, and local food systems. The concept of Slow Money is now gathering steam on a national level. It has spawned an annual conference and is being applied to other forms of sustainable start-up enterprises, not just food. The local nonprofit Sustainable Resources INW (formerly SLIP) is looking to build upon this momentum by making it easier to connect investors in the Spokane area with small-scale green entrepreneurs. “Our local investment committee’s role is to research ways for local non-wealthy or unaccredited people to invest in locally owned green businesses,” says Susanne Croft, executive director for Sustainable Resources INW. In 2009, Susanne Croft left her job at the City of Spokane to form Sustainable Resources INW, an educational non-profit dedicated to supporting local sustainable business practices. Earlier this year, a local investing sub-committee formed that wanted to specifically address maximizing investments for small start-up businesses. They are looking to national groups such as Slow Money and Cutting Edge Capital for innovative approaches to raising capital. “In the last year or so, there’s been an explosion of successful models led by knowledgeable, creative people who have identified means for unaccredited investors to get involved without violating SEC requirements,” says Croft. Croft’s committee is presently screening successful capital development models used elsewhere in the country that seem like a good fit for Spokane. They plan to launch a communitywide gathering in the coming months, where 14

Out There Monthly / November 2011

they aim to showcase three to four models. One model that the committee is looking to is LION (Local Investment Opportunties Network) from Port Townsend. LION was first

We, as Americans, send approximately $26 trillion to Wall Street every year as investments. At the same time, small businesses create over 50 percent of the jobs in this country.

launched in 2008 as a membership-based network that basically is an email list that connects local business development proposals with local investors. “We facilitate making connections. Our goal is to keep the money flowing locally, so that we are more prosperous as a community. Instead of having our investors send their money out into the global financial markets to who knows what,” says James Frazier, Investment Advisor and Co-Founder of LION. Abiding by securities laws and regulations at both the state and federal levels is central to the success of LION. Security Exchange Commission regulations make capital development for small businesses largely prohibitive, requiring access to accredited investors or engaging in a costly SEC review. “Generally what we do is use a non-public exemption, which means that all of our trans-

actions are private. What that means to us is that we need to have pre-existing relationships between the business owner and the potential investors. In a small community like ours, they’re usually already in place. When they’re not, when we get a new member, we have an orientation, we have occasional social events, we have quarterly meetings. So a key component of LION is getting together and actually creating community on a one-to-one basis between the investors and the business owners,” says Frazier. To date, LION has raised approximately $2 million for just over 30 local businesses, with no defaults so far. Money is just one of the forms of exchange between investors and businesses, with many investors preferring being “paid” through lifetime supplies of organic vegetables or bicycle repair—depending on the business. One of the businesses to utilize LION is the Mt. Townsend Creamery, who used the network to consolidate debt and now distributes dividends in cheese to their investors. The process for joining LION is simple. According to its website, potential members agree to a basic set of guidelines regarding confidentiality, group decision-making, and conflict resolution. Local business owners or startup entrepreneurs are invited to submit their business plan, which is then e-mailed to the LION members. Business owners decide to which potential investors they wish to submit their information. LION is not a part of the actual investment process, it is not an investment club nor does it give investment advice. LION members are encouraged to consult their own professional advisors, if needed, before making investment decisions. Croft and her committee are attracted to LION due to its simplicity. “It’s easy, it doesn’t involve a lot of paperwork or organization-

al structure, and it’s relationship-based, like Spokane. Plus we already know it conforms to Washington state law because it is based in Port Townsend,” says Croft. We, as Americans, send approximately $26 trillion to Wall Street every year as investments. At the same time, small businesses create over 50 percent of the jobs in this country. If only a small portion of this money could be diverted to locally owned and operated businesses, it could be the stimulus program we have been waiting for. “When people choose to invest their money with locally owned businesses, the impacts of their investments are no longer ‘out of sight, out of mind,’ but visible and working in stride with the community to make Spokane a better place to live,” Croft says. “When individuals are financially invested in a company, people want it to succeed so they’re more likely to do business with them and encourage others to as well. The LION model brings residents together with entrepreneurs so we all share a stake in our community’s future.” //

To get involved in local capital development for Spokane please contact Susanne Croft at scroft@sustainableresources.org. New members to the committee should be prepared to actively participate in twice-monthly meetings. If you are interested but can’t commit to the committee, you can ask to be added to a distribution list for periodic updates on relevant topics. For more information on new forms of capital development and LION, please go to:

www.l2020.org & www.cuttingedgecapital.org.


GoGreen: SustainableLiving SUSTAINABLELIVINGCALENDAR

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(November 3) Transform Your Yard into an roughly (12) 4 1/2 oz. bars of soap. $55. Preregister Oasis using Permaculture. When: Potluck at at store online. Info: 509-368-9378, www.sun-

6:30, Presentation at 7:30. Where: Salem Lutheran Church, 1428 W. Broadway, Spokane. Jan Spencer has been transforming his 1/4 acre suburban property in Eugene, Oregon, since 2000, and will be sharing stories, helpful hints, and photos. Info: www.suburbanpermaculture.org.

(November 5) Glow-On: DIY Winter Skin Soothers Workshop. When: 10 AM – Noon.

Where: Sun People Dry Goods Co, 32 W 2nd Ave, Ste. 200. Make a luxuriously soothing winter skin care kit while learning about the benefits of avoiding manufactured products. $30. Preregister at the store or online. Info: 509-368-9378, www. sunpeopledrygoods.com.

(November 6) FREE Film Showing of “Establishing a Food Forest”. When: 2 PM.

Where: Sun People Dry Goods Co, 32 W 2nd Ave, Ste. 200. Permaculturist, Geoff Lawton demonstrates how to grow a food forest from start to finish. Info: 509-368-9378, www.sunpeopledrygoods. com .

(November 12 & 13) Soapmaking 101 Workshop. When: (12th) 10 AM - 12:30 PM (13th) 11:30A to 12:30 PM. Where: Sun People Dry Goods Co, 32 W 2nd Ave, Ste. 200. Make and take home 4 lbs. or

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(November 19) Transitioning to LED; A Beginners Guide. When: 2 PM – 4 PM. Where:

Sun People Dry Goods Co, 32 W 2nd Ave, Ste. 200. Learn the latest lighting technology with an emphasis on how to blend incandescent, low voltage, compact fluorescent, and LED in your home. FREE. Preregister online. Info: 509-3689378, www.sunpeopledrygoods.com.

(November 19) Intro to Beekeeping Workshop. When: 10:00 – Noon. Where: Sun People Dry Goods Co, 32 W 2nd Ave, Ste. 200. A great introduction for people interested in keeping bees but aren’t sure what all is needed to get started. $20 Preregister online. Info: 509-368-9378, www.sunpeopledrygoods.com.

(November 21) Green Business Networking Luncheon: From Historic to High PerformanceMcKinstry’s Journey. When: 11:30 AM - 1:15

PM. Where: Spokane Convention Center. The epic story from neglected railroad barn to a campus for green technology. Come learn how McKinstry is making saving historical buildings financially feasible. Info: 509-209-2861, www.sustainableresourcesinw.org. //

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10/7/11 6:27 PM


OutdoorCalendar CLIMBING (Ongoing Wednesdays) Spider Monkey Climbing Club. When: 5 – 7PM. Where: Wild Walls, 202 W.

2nd Ave. For kids ages 4 – 10 years. Please call ahead. Come climb and meet new friends! Info: 509-4559596.

(November 5, 12) Saturday Climbing. When: 1-4 PM.

Where: REI, 1125 N Monroe. Looking for a family activity on Saturdays? Climb our wall! We provide all the gear you’ll need. Co-op members climb for free! Info: 509-328-9900, rei.com/Spokane.

(November 7) Women’s Climb Night at Diva Night. When: 5:30 - 8:30 PM. Where: REI, 1125 N Monroe. Ladies, come out and practice your climbing, agility and balance skills in a safe, encouraging environment. Info: 509-328-9900, rei.com/Spokane.

(November 9) Discover Rock Class – Women’s. When 6 - 8 PM. Where: 2002 N. Division. Everything you need to harness up, tie in and belay with confidence. This class is for those who wish to get into climbing, as well as for parents wishing to get their young ones climbing safely. $20. Info: mountaingear.com/pages/ retailstore/retail.asp. (November 23) Discover Rock Class. When 6 - 8 PM.

Where: 2002 N. Division. Everything you need to harness up, tie in and belay with confidence. This class is for those women who wish to get into climbing, as well as for parents wishing to get their young ones climbing safely. Women Only. $20. Info: mountaingear.com/pages/retailstore/retail.asp.

CYCLING (Ongoing Saturdays) Weekly Urban Bike Races. When: 6 - 7 PM. Where: Cda Park. Bike Races, Format by Popular Vote at time of Race. Formats are : Relay, Picture hunt, Follow the clues, Sticker slap race. Road bikes Suggested. Prizes! Info: 313-7571888, facebook.com/event.php?eid&3050340401358

(Ongoing) WOW Cycling Spokane. Great cycling is

here and we’re out on the roads and trails! We’re now on FaceBook as Wow Cycling Spokane, friend us! Info: 509-951-6366, wowcycling.com.

(Ongoing) Belles and Baskets. Whatever style your

Where: Mead, WA Walter’s Fruit Ranch. Info: emdesports.com.

(November 20) Inland Northwest Cyclocross Series. Where: Coeur d’Alene, ID Millriver on Seltice. Finals. Info: emdesports.com.

RUNNING/WALKING (November 20) Jingle Bell Run/Walk. When 8 AM. Where: Riverfront Park. Info: spokanejinglebellrun. kintera.org. (November 24), BRRC Turkey Trot, Manito Park, 9:00 am, Manito Park Duck Pond, cash or food donations. Info: brrc.net.

(November 24) Cheney HS Turkey Trot. When 9 AM. Where: Cheney High School. Cost: $5 no shirt, $20 w/shirt (11/14 deadline for shirt orders). Info: brrc. net.

(November 11) Ski / Board Wax Class. When: 6 – 8

PM. Where: Mt. Gear. We will cover the basics to get you moving faster down the slopes. Learn how to prep and hot wax your skis/board from our certified technician. All boards should be waxed on a regular basis, including no-wax skis – this class allows you to keep those bases in incredible shape. Bring questions and get answers. $10. Info: mountaingear.com/pages/ retailstore/retail.asp.

(November 12) Mt Spokane & REI Winter Sports Kick-Off. When: Store Hours. Where: REI Spokane, Boone & Monroe. Mt. Spokane staff will be at REI for the Winter Sports Kick-Off festivities! Pick up your season pass, enter to win sweet gear and learn anything and everything you need to know about going outside in the winter. Be sure to bring your appetite for roasted Twinkies. Info: mt.spokane.com.

(November 19) Winter Safety Class. When: 1 – 2 PM.

Mountain. The lights come on and the holiday season officially begins with hot chocolate, cookies and carolers. Followed by Christmas stories in the Selkirk Lobby. Info: schweitzer.com.

(December 3) Snowshoe Tour Mt Spokane w/ Transportation. When: 10 AM – 2 PM. Where: Yokes

Where: Moses Lake, WA Blue Herron Park. Info: emdesports.com.

Foods 14202 N. Market St. Parking Lot. Learn about and try this fun winter sport. During the hike you will travel through the snow-covered trees and hills around Mt. Spokane. We will meet at the Mead Yokes. Directions and information emailed upon registration. Price includes snowshoes and transportation! $35. 1 session (Ages 14 & over). Info: spokaneparks.org.

(November 13) Inland Northwest Cyclocross Series.

(December 4) Country Ski Skating. When: 1 - 3 PM.

16

Out There Monthly / November 2011



to Row. Sculling and sweep rowing. Recreational and competitive. Fully coached practices. Info: spokanerowing.org.

YOGA (October 31 - December 23) Iyengar Yoga Classes for Beginners. When: Mon. 9:30am, Tues. 6pm &

Thurs. 6 PM. Where: Sunflower Yoga 6413 E. 14th Ave. Iyengar yoga is known for its therapeutic benefits, use of props and clear instruction. Gentle and intermediate classes also offered. Info: 509-535-7369, sunfloweryoga.net.

(November 5 – December 17) Yoga Gentle Stretch. When: 9 - 10 AM. Where: Unity Church 2900 S.

SIXMONTHTRAININGCALENDAR (April 2012 - August 2012) Baddlands Cooper Jones Twilight Series Races. When: Tuesday

Where: REI, 1125 N Monroe. Join REI experts to find out all you need to know about this fun sport. If you can hike, you can snowshoe! Find out how. Info: 509-328-9900, rei.com/Spokane.

(December 3) Holiday Kick Off. Where: Schweitzer

(November 6) Inland Northwest Cyclocross Series.

(Ongoing) Masters Rowing. When: T, TH 6 - 7:30 PM, Sat 7:30 - 9:30 AM, Where: Spokane River near Upriver Dam. Masters rowing practices for experienced rowers and those who have completed Learn

(November 3) Snowshoeing Basics. When: 7 PM.

(Ongoing) Spokane Bicycle Club. S.B.C. offers eight

Where: Spokane Area. Spokane BOMB (Believers On Mountain Bikes) is a non-denominational Christian group leading multiple monthly rides in the Spokane area. Everyone welcome, helmets required. Info: spokanebomb@yahoo.com, spokanebomb.com.

PADDLING

CYCLING

cycle, join other Spokane women for no-drop rides, treats, and friendship. Info: 509-951-4090, facebook. com/bellesandbaskets.

(Ongoing) Mountain Bike Rides. When: Varies.

Mt Spokane State Park Selkirk Lodge. Sponsored by Mountain Gear. If you’ve cross-country skied, be part of this skiing style. Skating is quick, graceful and fun. Learn with us as you experience the basics of ski-skating. Class is taught by P.S.I.A. certified crosscountry ski instructors. Includes equipment rental. Directions and additional information emailed upon registration. SNO-PARK permits required. $41. 1 session (Ages 18 & over). Info: spokaneparks.org.

SKIING/SNOWBOARDING

Where: Mt. Gear. With our avalanche expert as he takes you through the basics of winter travel. Bring your questions. Info: mountaingear.com/pages/ retailstore/retail.asp.

weekly rides of various lengths and difficulty for members and non-members. Check the web site for ride details. Info: 509-747-5581, spokanebicycleclub. org.

Submit your event at www.outtheremonthly.com

evenings at 6 PM. Where: Cheney, Spokane, Rathdrum, Liberty Lake, Steptoe Butte. USAC Sanctioned bicycle racing. Road races and crits. A, B, C, and Wms Packs. Info: 509-456-0432, baddlands.org.

MARATHONS (May 19, 2012) Windermere Marathon, Spokane. Info: windermeremarathon.com.

this season, six hours of skiing for $19 bucks. Info: mtspokane.com.

(December 17) Great Scott Cross Country Ski Race - 5k and 10k formats. Info: schweitzer. com

(December 28-29) Snowshoe Survival Youth Day Camp. When: 10 AM – 3 PM. Where:

Mountain Gear. Send your child with us during winter break to learn survival skills at the beautiful snow covered Mt. Spokane State Park. 509.625.6200, spokaneparks.org.

(January 11) Ladies Day at Mt. Spokane.

(May 27, 2012) Coeur d’Alene Marathon. Info:

Program runs 9am-4pm. Info: 509-238-2220 x215, mtspokane.com.

RUNNING

(January 21) Cougar Gulch Cross Country Ski Race, 5k and 10k formats. Info: Schweitzer.

509-979-4370.

(January 14) 33rd Annual Nookachamps Winter Runs. Mt. Vernon, WA. 1/2 Marathon,

10K, and 5K Info: nookachamps.com.

(February) Partners in Pain 5K. Info: brrc.net (May 6) Lilac Bloomsday Run, the 36th. Info:

www.bloomsdayrun.org

TRIATHALON (March 3) Methow Winter Triathalon. Bike,

Ski, Run. Check for updates. Info; www.mvsta. com.

SKIING, SNOWSHOE, ADVENTURE RACING (December) Fitness Fanatics Nordic Ski Lessons Start. Info: fitfanatics.com. (December 16) Mt Spokane Night Skiing Kickoff. We’ve lowered the cost of night skiing

com.

(January 28, 2012) USASA Alpine and Slopestyle Competitions at Schweitzer. Info: schweitzer.com.

(February 10th, 11 & 12) 5th Annual Kan Jam Freestyle Festival. Events include a Rail Jam,

Slopestyle, and Big Air contests. Info: mtspokane. com.

(February 22-36, 2012) Master’s Ski Race Clinics and Races. schweitzer.com (February 4, 2012) Washington Romp to Stomp. Stevens Pass, WA. Modeled after the

highly successful Race for the Cure®, the Tubbs Romp to Stomp out Breast Cancer consists of a 3k or 5k snowshoe walk or a 3k snowshoe race. tubbsromptostomp.com.

(February 12, 2012) Langlauf 10K Ski Race. 34th annual XC ski race at Mt. Spokane. Info: spokanelanglauf.org //

Have an Event You Would Like to List? // Please visit www.outtheremonthly.com and click the “Submit Your Event” link. // Events MUST be sent in by the 20th of the month to be listed in the following month’s issue. Please follow the when, where format as seen in the calendar. Ongoing events need to be re-submitted each month.


OutdoorCalendar

EVENTS/MOVIES/MISC… (Open Until November 15) Riverside State Park Volunteers Wanted. When: Open. Where: Riverside State Park. Riverside State Park is looking for enthusiastic individuals or groups interested in trail projects. Come be a part of keeping our park beautiful. Info: 509-465-5064, riverside@parks.wa.gov

(November 2, 9, 16, 23, 30) Applebee’s Very Important Neighbor. When: 3 PM - 6 PM. Where: 2107 E 29th Avenue, Spokane WA. Description: A minimum $5 donation to benefit Starlight Children’s Foundation and you will be invited to enjoy free appetizers and drink specials at Applebee’s. Info: 509-321-0799, sheryl@starlight-northwest.org

(November 3, 4) Warren Miller Film Premiere - Like There’s No Tomorrow. When: 7:30 PM. Where:

Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox. Narrated by Olympic Gold Medalist Jonny Moseley and shot on location on five continents, Like There’s No Tomorrow celebrates the moments that make up a perfect winter. Info: mtspokane.com/event/207/ warren-miller-premiere

(November 5) Spokannibals Roller Derby. When:

7 PM - 9 PM. Where: Roller Valley Skate Center. Description: Don’t miss your last chance to see the Spokannibals play in 2011. Tickets are available through www.brownpapertickets.com, Time Bomb 711 N. Monroe. Info: 509-280-6195, spokannibals. com.

(November 11) Intro to Observational Astronomy. When: 7:30 PM. Where: Corbin Senior Center, Introductory class aimed at everyday observation of the night sky visually and with simple telescopes and binoculars. Info: 509-625-6200, spokaneparks.org.

Info: 509-368-9378, www.sunpeopledrygoods.com.

(November 19 - 21) Banff Mountain Film Festival. When: Various Times. Where: The Bing. Join us for 3 adventure-filled nights at The Bing Crosby Theater. Share in heart-stopping action, heartwarming stories and mountains of inspiration. Banff Mountain Film Festival; travel the world without leaving Spokane. Buy early, as all three shows are expected to sell out. $15 or all 3 nights for $38.50, your tickets are available at the retail store or online. Info: mountaingear. com/Banff.

(November 22) NE Chapter WNPS Program. When: 7 - 8 PM. Where: Manito Garden Meeting Room, East of Greenhouse. “Native Pollinators and their Natural History” – Presented by Dr. Gary Chang. Hosted by the NE Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society. Info: 509-313-6688, nechapterwnps.org. (December 7) When: 7 PM. Where: REI on Monroe. Gals Get Going. Learn details about the program and how you can join Gals Get Going for a fun and challenging workout this winter. Classes will run for 8 weeks at 6:30 on Wednesday nights at U District Physical Therapy. Info: kirsten@galsgetgoing.com, galsgetgoing.com.

We’ve moved. And we need your help! We’re at 1527 E 16th Ave. Thursday 2-6, Friday 2-6 Saturday 11-6

Want to volunteer? Email pedals2people.vc@gmail.com

(December 28-29) Snowshoe Survival Youth Day Camp. When: 10 AM – 3 PM. Where: Mountain Gear. Send your child with us during winter break to learn survival skills at the beautiful snow covered Mt. Spokane State Park. 509.625.6200, spokaneparks.org. //

We Have Hats

Where: Gonzaga University, Jepson Center’s Wolfe Auditorium. Presented by Gonzaga Outdoors, the Stevens Peak Backcountry Coalition and Spokane Mountaineers Foundation. Tickets $7, $3 students, online at commerce.cashnet.com/guoutdoors. Info: 509-624-7120, StevensPeakBC.org.

(November 12) Winter Sports Kick-off. When: 11 AM - 4 PM. Where: REI, 1125 N Monroe. Meet vendors, enter for lots of sweet prizes, buy season passes for your favorite mountains and roast a Twinkie. Winter’s coming. Be ready! Info: 509-328-9900, rei. com/spokane (November 19) Winter Safety Class. When: 1 – 2 PM. Where: Mt. Gear. with our avalanche expert as he takes you through the basics of winter travel. Bring your questions. Info: mountaingear.com/ pages/retailstore/retail.asp.

Vintage & New in a

wide variety of

styles & sizes

OUTDOOR CALENDAR

(November 11) Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival. When: 7 PM. Doors open 6:30 PM.

NOV 2011

Bernard St.) If you have not exercised for a while, suffer from some of the aches and pains that accompany life, or you simply want to de-stress in a very gentle matter, this is the class for you. (No class Thanksgiving week). $60. Ages 16 & over. Info: spokaneparks.org.

(November 20) FREE Film Showing of “Blue Vinyl”. When: 2 PM. Where: Sun People Dry Goods

Co, 32 W 2nd Ave, Ste. 200. With humor and a piece of vinyl siding firmly in hand filmmakers set out in search of the truth about polyvinyl chloride (PVC).

Vintage Audio Gear • Clothes • Hats • Records | 2611 N. Monroe • 509-326-4842 November 2011

/ Out There Monthly

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Death Valley to Mt. Whitney. SOLO. In 89 hours and 38 minutes. Is Lisa Bliss crazy or just crazy good? By JON JONCKERS

TOP: Lisa in Death Valley. // Photo Tim Englund. BOTTOM LEFT: Lisa in the mountains. // Photo Tim Englund. BOTTOM RIGHT: Lisa trains in Riverside State Park. // Photo Jon Jonckers. FACING PAGE: Willy Holmes, Tim Englund and Lisa Bliss standing at the Mt. Whitney trailhaed. 18

Out There Monthly / November 2011


With freezing hands, Lisa Bliss battled to change the batteries in her headlamp. Sleepdeprived and grossly exhausted, she shivered in the dark on that July night in California and tried to finesse the tiny batteries into the proper orientation so she could see and continue onward. One of her partners for the final leg of the journey offered to shine his light in her direction so she could see better, and make the battery swap a little easier. But Lisa had to ask him to back away. Even while the words left her teeth-chattering mouth, she felt a clap of fear when she considered how this single morsel of “assistance” might somehow upset everything she had worked so hard to achieve, and possibly derail the entire expedition. The rules for this solo, self-contained trip required her to forgo all assistance—no help with water or shelter or food or pacing or even something as benign as “light.” While she wasn’t 100 percent certain about the assistance gained via someone’s headlamp, she just couldn’t risk it. So she refused and ordered her companion to back off. Lisa labored alone in the cold, windy darkness until her headlamp returned to life. She continued to the summit of Mount Whitney, the highest point in the contiguous U.S., following her recent trek across Death Valley, the lowest point in North America. Starting on July 25, 2011, she managed this entire journey, all 146 miles, on foot in 89 hours 38 minutes—making her the first woman, and only second person ever, to complete the journey solo, self-supported and self-contained. The primary motivation and charity recipient for this endurance adventure was back home in Spokane. Crosswalk Youth Shelter—a Volunteers of America organization—is an emergency refuge, a school dropout prevention program, and a group of lifesaving and life-changing programs dedicated to breaking the cycle of youth homelessness. Run

by a small professional staff, Crosswalk relies heavily on the generosity of churches, clubs, families and businesses that provide daily meals, as well as community volunteers who provide tutoring and enrichment activities. Dr. Lisa Bliss—a Physiatrist, specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation—considered several charities; but she connected with Crosswalk in so many ways that, in the end, it was the most logical choice. She readily cites worthy institutions that she has raised money for in the

ily identify with the significance of the Crosswalk organization and its mission to create life-changing programs, and she knew her solo crossing could make a difference—a ten thousand dollar difference. No stranger to endurance events and races, Lisa is an established ultramarathoner with numerous records and accolades. After serving as the head of the medical team for the Badwater Ultramarathon in 2003, Lisa entered the race the following year. She placed as the third woman and

------------------------------------------------------------------She routinely humbles some of the strongest distance runners on the planet, but she’s so kind and modest one would never know she runs further in four of her running races than a NASCAR driver does in one jet-fueled race. ------------------------------------------------------------------past, such as Daybreak of Spokane, but the link with Crosswalk made a strong impression—and ultimately aided her training. It even influenced the name of her cart. Prior to committing to the Badwater Basin to Mt. Whitney solo crossing, whenever Lisa reflected on her past during her training runs, she recalled pivotal moments and decisions that delivered her through school and college—as well as many of her first marathons. While she admits she doesn’t identify with being homeless, she does admit to occasional instances of hopelessness. The weight of the world on an adolescent mind is an indefinable test of endurance, and Lisa recognized it. From that perspective, she could eas-

15th overall finisher in her rookie debut, with an impressive time of 37 hours 41 minutes for 135 miles. Three years later, Lisa crushed the Badwater Ultramarathon course again—this time as the first female finisher and 16th overall in a time of 34 hours 33 minutes. In a recent 24-hour race, Lisa ran 125.98 miles in 24 hours. Additionally, running the 153-mile Spartathlon race in Greece this year, Lisa finished as the third woman and first overall American in a time of 32 hours 23 minutes. She routinely humbles some of the strongest distance runners on the planet, but she’s so kind and modest one would never know she runs further in four of her running races than a NASCAR driver

does in one jet-fueled race. Lisa does not model expensive performance clothing. She is stunning in her approachability and her genuine demeanor. She places a significant value on authenticity, but more importantly, she is never afraid to laugh at herself. She affirms uncommon endurance and a good sense of humor go hand in hand. A California blonde, she is built like a high school cheerleader but arguably leaner and tougher than a UFC cage fighter. She is whip-smart about anatomy and physical ailments, but openly jokes that most of her patients don’t know her specialties. She is sheepish about confessing how her achievements occurred after foot surgery or other injury rehabilitations. Most of her ultramarathon knowledge came through trial and error; however, she repeatedly professes that the best advice for endurance athletes isn’t avoiding excessive training—it’s avoiding excessive resting. “This may have been a solo, unaided, self-contained crossing of Death Valley to the summit of Mt. Whitney, but it was in no way unsupported. I am deeply appreciative,” she says. Speaking about the logistics and planning and background support, Lisa is quick to rattle off many key people who made her journey possible. She did not receive assistance during the event, but she did have friends serve as witnesses and protection. Now that a few weeks have softened the event a little more, she can laugh when she says, “Tim [Englund] and Willy [Holmes] were awesome. Of course, they were there to witness and provide a little safety, but not help. A tough job for them like, for example, when the cart tipped over and all they could do was watch.” When asked if she talked to the cart during the solo Badwater crossing, she looks perplexed and then tries to mask a smile. Similar to how some

November 2011

/ Out There Monthly

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Lisa at Towne Pass in California. // Photo Tim Englund.

runners have a mantra, or some athletes talk to their racket or ball, she confesses that she indeed talked to her cart. “Yeah, it sort of was like Wilson.” [The volleyball from Castaway—ed.] She laughs and continues, “I didn’t think I would talk to the cart, but sometimes it was just easier than cursing under my breath or at the wind. There were many emotional moments, and sometimes it was part of me and sometimes it was a friend.” When she wasn’t running with the cart, like a baby jogger, in front of her during the flats or the downhill sections, she ran or hiked with the cart attached via bungee cords to a hipbelt that she purchased at Spokane’s REI store. The cart proved to be a key component. But in order to appreciate the cart, it helps to understand the cart’s requirements. But in order to understand this, one must know a little about Marshall Ulrich—aka the King of Pain. Marshall Ulrich made the first successful solo, unaided, self-contained Badwater/Whitney crossing in 1999. Marshall first tried the crossing in 1998 but failed to make it very far due to a couple complications, including his initial cart. He aborted that initial attempt and returned the next year for a successful completion, which he later dubbed “My Most Unforgettable Ultramarathon.” In addition to that solo crossing, Marshall has gone on to win several ultramarathons and climb all of the Seven Summits—each on his first try. And he recently ran across America—3,063.2 miles in 52 days. No surprise, Marshall and Lisa are good friends—complete with tons of mutual respect. Back in 1998, Marshall chronicled all the rules for his solo crossing, which in turn set the bar for all future Badwater/Whitney solo crossings. He adopted the Badwater Ultramarathon rules and added these additional stipulations: ------------------------------------------------------1) The attempts must take place in the July-toAugust “window” to officially count. ------------------------------------------------------2) No aid of any kind from an outside source and/ or person. ------------------------------------------------------20

Out There Monthly / November 2011

3) No using any shelter other than nature’s shade (i.e., boulders, creosote bushes, trees, etc.). ------------------------------------------------------4) You must have everything from start to finish: food, clothing, equipment, and all necessary water. If a water source along the course is available, it cannot be used. ------------------------------------------------------5) Trailers or any other apparatus are allowed as long as that apparatus is pushed, pulled or carried. No motorized trailers. The trailer or apparatus can be disposed of only at the Lone Pine Junction (the intersection of Whitney Portal Road and Hwy. 395) or the Whitney trailhead. ------------------------------------------------------6) With the exception of water, nothing can be disposed of along the way, not even trash. ------------------------------------------------------7) Medical emergencies must be dealt with and/ or administered by the individual only. No help or supplies can be used from an outside source. ------------------------------------------------------8) Only a.m. starts are valid. ------------------------------------------------------9) No leaving the course is allowed; you must remain on the course at all times. ------------------------------------------------------10) There must be at least one person monitoring the above compliances at all times. ------------------------------------------------------These rules not only set a high standard for the athlete, but they also set a very high standard for the cart. Right when Lisa was coordinating the benefit for Crosswalk, and in the thick of training, she was also in the thick of finding and preparing a suitable cart. In typical modest Lisa Bliss fashion, she composed an email titled, “Subject: How hard could it be? - Can you help?” And she sent it to Glen Copus of Elephant Bikes. She was sort of kidding but not really. Glen chose to accept the mission, and went about creating a cart capable of holding 240 pounds of which 180 pounds was frozen water. He produced an initial cart that allowed Lisa to test it while running up and down Mount Spokane. The frame rested on three mountain bike wheels, and worked well when being pushed like a grocery cart

or pulled like a wagon. In push mode, it had two brakes to control descent and steer. In pull mode, it had two bars with bungee straps that attached to a backpacking hipbelt. Glen says, “I knew from the first time I met her that the only chance of failure would be equipment related. It was at this time that I should have taken my leave of the project.” He was sort of kidding but not really. Marshall Ulrich himself testifies to Lisa’s fortitude, and referenced her accomplishment to winning the “Super Bowl of ultra running, only rarer.” “A few other people have contacted me claiming that they were going to do it, but none followed through,” Marshall states, through an email interview. “I was tracking her along the way hoping she would be the first female to do it. I was very happy for her as I knew that she had worked hard to train for it.” Marshall tracked Lisa’s progress the same way the kids and staff at Crosswalk tracked her. During her crossing, she wore a GPS tracker, and a website posted her mileage and location. The Crosswalk staff added her website details to a large-screen TV at their facility, and many people watched it as if it was a local college basketball game. From time to time, she stopped to eat or rest or get more water, and her progress would be frozen on the website for up to 20 minutes. But when the system refreshed, it might show her moving quickly again, and the viewers would all cheer. Bridget Cannon, director of Youth Services at Crosswalk, swells with enthusiasm whenever she talks about Lisa Bliss. “In all honesty, I thought she was a little crazy,” she says, about her first meeting with Lisa. “But after talking to her about it, I marveled at her dedication and sincerity—doing this as an inspiration for these kids. Lisa’s feat helped them realize their inner strength and power, seeing what this tiny—in physical stature only—woman could do, was inspiring for our kids and all [the staff].” Bridget also says, “It just seems impossible. I am amazed at what she accomplished. Upon her return, the kids in Crosswalk invited her to a barbeque to thank her. She spoke with them about what it was like—sleeping very little, eating sparingly, her self-doubts about completing it, and how she would think about the kids [to help] keep her motivated. She blew us away.” Lisa nearly was blown away. The wind proved to be a ruthless foe in Death Valley, sometimes with brute force and sometimes like a furnace. Thankfully, Lisa knew what to expect due to her previous Badwater experiences, but that didn’t make it any easier. The human body is never prepared for temperatures reaching beyond 120 degrees. Her biggest breaking point occurred on Townes Pass. This notorious stretch starts after 42 miles of effort, and climbs from sea level to 4.956 feet, with certain sections measuring eight percent grade. “It

took Marshall 16 hours to make this climb,” she says. “It took me almost 21. It was incredibly difficult and yes, I thought many times that I couldn’t do it. I broke down mentally at the last stretch. I could see the top but I couldn’t pull up that grade with the fierce head wind.” As she describes the agony of that situation, she invariably reenacts the moments when the bungee cords were no longer stretchy—they were tight and pulling her backwards. Several times she nearly cried, but she didn’t want to waste the effort or the hydration. Ultimately, she figured out how to tack back and forth up the road to avoid the steepest pitches. When asked what unknown aspect proved to be the most daunting or hazardous, Lisa doesn’t hesitate. “Traffic,” she says. “Traffic was a bit scary. Tim and Willy worked nearly non-stop to make sure cars were alerted that I was on the road.” In summary, Lisa says, “The first day was cool and overcast. I was lucky. I slept about a half hour the first night, a total of about one and half hours the second, and none the third. I had more than enough water, even dumped about 2.5 gallons.” While the event looms large in her life right now, she knows too well that parts of the Badwater/ Whitney solo crossing will soon fade. She isn’t brief at all, but she has compact answers for a lot of the generic questions that she has received so many times already. She redirects attention to Crosswalk, and reinforces the value of that institution. And she seamlessly remarks how much good $10,000 raised by her endeavor will do in the coming years. If, for example, that money sponsors or supplements 100 or 200 GEDs for homeless teens, then its value and worth will easily surpass $10,000. But questions about the cart are somehow different. The cart bears the name “River Run,” named after a beautiful ranch in North Carolina. Lisa’s road from youth to school to career to her Badwater/Whitney solo crossing was not direct, nor succinct, nor paved. But the road did detour from “giving up or giving in” thanks to an uncle, the owner of River Run, and Lisa did graduate from Loyola University with Summa Cum Laude honors. She struggled to name the cart while she was training with it, but once she reviewed her path to that moment in her life, she knew the name had to be “River Run.” (To learn the whole story behind the name, visit Lisa’s blog at http://lisabliss. blogspot.com, and read the post for July 8, 2011.) The ripples from this adventurous crossing reach much further than Lisa initially imagined. She knows she impacted the lives of the Crosswalk team, but she doesn’t yet know how much those lives will change others. While it isn’t quantifiable, it’s safe to assume the value exceeds ten grand. Greater still, Lisa has left her mark on many ultramarathons and raised the bar for endurance athletes, both male and female. She has already fielded calls from other endurance athletes, both domestic and international, who wish to borrow or copy her cart design. Some of the attention is flattering, and some is plain silly. She hasn’t even decided what her own next big goal will be—not because she’s refraining from declaring it, but because she can’t start training for something else until she’s recovered from her most recent ultramarathon race. To this day, Lisa still shrugs off praise about how tough she is. She doesn’t offer Zen answers about training or diet or visualization. She’s simply tenacious and strong. Glen Copus of Elephant Bikes thinks otherwise. “I think she took the easy way,” he says. “If she was really tough she would have used a wheelbarrow.” // For more information on the Volunteers of America’s Crosswalk Teen Shelter go to: www.voaspokane.org/Crosswalk


Photo of the Month

Brent Perdue

PhotO: Brent perdue Brendan Perdue takes a break from paddling to test the waters of the West Branch of the Little Spokane River. -Brent wins an OTM carabiner. Send your vertical, 3 meg. or less submission with caption to editor@outtheremonthly.com. Best photos entries will be picked for upcoming issues.

RoadtripDJ: November Lisa jonckers “The High Road” / Broken Bells / Broken Bells album Beautiful instrumental opening, with rich tones, and a full sound. Great beat that always makes me want to play the steering wheel. “Blue Suede Shoes” / Elvis Presley / Viva Elvis – The Album I don’t normally like remixes, but there’s something to be said for this catchy reboot. It was remade for a Vegas Cirque Du Soleil show, and the beat made me fall in love with the song again. “Crazy” / Gnarls Barkley / St. Elsewhere Modern pop soul with good grooves…and everybody goes a little crazy sometimes. “I Run To You” / Lady Antebellum / Lady Antebellum album Not their best song, but it’s a favorite and it works when I’m driving. Favorite lyrics: “I run my life or is it running me.”

Bing Crosby Theater, Spokane Fri, Sat - 7 pm, Sun - 6 pm $15.00 per show or $38.50 for 3-day pass Hosted by

“Black Horse and a Cherry Tree” / KT Tunstall / Eye to the Telescope I love it just because it’s so snappy and catchy. KT does it all—the guitar, the vocals, the beat, the background vocals, and even the tambourine. The song overflows with genius and talent, and it’s fun to sing. //

get your tickets @ 2002 N Division, Spokane mountaingear.com Alex Girard backcountry skiing, Rogers Pass B.C., © Ryan Creary

OTM Sept11 Banff HalfPgVert.indd 1

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LastPage

Reading the rocks in Montana

EWU’s Geology Boot Camp Gives Students A Real World Challenge / By Richard Orndorff and Sherry LaBonte On graduation day, geology seniors march across the temporary stage on Roos Field, shake hands with EWU President Dr. Arévalo, and receive their diplomas. Unlike other graduating students, however, geologists have one final hurdle to surmount—Field Camp, a 10-credit course that is required for completion of the BS degree program. Students affectionately refer to this class as Geology Boot Camp. Geology attracts students who love the challenge and beauty of the outdoors and who thrive in the role of intrepid explorer of earth history. The EWU Geology Department offers a number of field-based classes during spring and summer breaks that travel across the western U.S. and introduce students to the geology of particular regions. These courses typically include students from different academic levels and even different majors. Geology Field Camp is a different beast altogether. Course prerequisites include every class in the geology curriculum, and instead of learning about regional geology, students are thrust out into the field as working geologists. And work they do. EWU faculty teach the four-week-long Field Camp in the deserts and mountains of southwestern Montana, which is part of the Fold and Thrust Belt of the Rocky Mountains. The area is unique,

with well-exposed folded and faulted rock layers that date from ancient Archean metamorphic rock all the way to relatively modern lava flows that lie on accessible public land. Students and faculty stay in dorms at the University of Montana-Western in Dillon, a small town that is overrun with geologists during summer months. Over 20 colleges and universities, including Washington State University and the University of Washington, use UMW as a base from which to teach their field camps. Like EWU students and faculty, they eat breakfast in the UMW cafeteria at 7:00 am, head into the field with bagged lunches at 8:00 am, and then return, dusty and tired, at 5:00 pm for dinner. The schedule is demanding. Supervised by faculty, students do field work six days per week. The seventh day is spent making maps and crosssections and working on various other exercises to better understand the geology of project areas. There are one and two-day individual mapping projects and seven and eight-day group projects that cover areas up to ten square miles. The terrain is challenging, as students hike eight to twelve miles each day across steep terrain at elevations from 5000 feet to over 8000 feet above sea level. There are rarely trails available, and the ground is often strewn with boulders. Blisters from new boots and cuts and bruises from slips and falls are common, but major injuries are thankfully

2011 Spokane Marathon

A special thanks to our Sponsors! Runner's Soul Papa Murphy's DoubleTree Hotel - Spokane City Center Across the Line Timing Massage Envy O'Doherty's Irish Grille

www.spokanemarathon.us 22

Out There Monthly / November 2011

Dr. Orndorff prepares students for a day of mapping in the McCartney Mountains south of Dillon, MT. // photo by Sherry LaBonte.

rare. There are benefits from grueling daily hikes. Everyone loses weight and gains muscle mass and cardiac capacity as they adapt to high elevations and steep slopes. One recent student with Type II diabetes discovered that he didn’t need insulin after the first week of Field Camp. And every hike, of course, ends with an incredible view that is a reward in and of itself. The land surface, while daunting, is hardly the only challenge. Weather is unstable early in the summer—there’s an old joke in Butte, Montana, about summer falling on the weekend. It’s hard-

The terrain is challenging, as students hike eight to twelve miles each day across steep terrain at elevations from 5000 ft to over 8000 ft. ly a joke to students and faculty who deal with flooded roads, snow and violent hailstorms in June followed by blistering 100-degree days in July. Waterproof parkas, wool socks and gloves give way to shorts, t-shirts and bottles of sunscreen. Voracious mosquitoes can be a problem in some areas in wet years, and rattlesnake encounters occur every day. Happily, rattlesnakes are more frightened of geology students than geology students are of snakes. There is also a feeling of daily connection to the world around them, as students watch the desert and mountain slopes bloom in late spring, turn green, then brown as summer comes in full force. Most geology degree programs require Field Camp of their graduating seniors, but fewer and fewer universities actually offer the class because of the expense, organizational requirements, and lack of interested faculty. Students from programs that don’t offer Field Camp therefore attend other

universities’ camps. The reputation of EWU’s camp has grown, and so has enrollment. In addition to its own students, EWU has hosted students from the University of Arizona, University of North Carolina, Washington State University, Syracuse University, Boston University, Case Western Reserve University, California Lutheran University, Pacific Lutheran University, SUNY at Binghamton, University of Louisiana, and others in recent years. Most years see multiple outside students from the same university; in 2011, for example, three students from the University of Arizona attended the EWU camp. Two students from China attended last summer’s camp—a first for EWU. The demand from outside students currently exceeds capacity at EWU’s Field Camp, so admission is a competitive process based on GPA, transcripts and letters of recommendation from faculty. Field projects involve recognizing and mapping geological formations, folds and faults; and then using surface measurements to draw crosssections that project formations and faults into the subsurface. These are skills that professional geologists use in a variety of fields including petroleum geology, economic geology (mining), paleontology (study of ancient life) and hydrology (identifying and developing water resources). Students gain confidence in their own skills as they complete independent projects as well as confidence on their ability to work productively and cooperatively on group projects. Field Camp is the most challenging class in the Geology curriculum, and oftentimes a student’s favorite. “It was a giant pain in the ass,” says Alex Lea, a student in EWU’s 2011 Field Camp, “But I had a lot of fun. Field Camp gave me confidence that I could be a geologist.” //

Richard Orndorff is the chair of EWU’s Department of Geology, and Sherry LaBonte is a writer and photographer.


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November 2011

/ Out There Monthly

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Out There Monthly / November 2011

For a complete list of class descriptions, events and information, contact us: 2002 N Division, Spokane • 509.325.9000

mountaingear.com/retail Hours: Mon-Fri 10 am-8 pm, Sat 10 am-6 pm, Sun 11 am-5 pm

Out There Monthly November 2011  
Out There Monthly November 2011  

The Inland Northwest Guide to Outdoor Recreation November 2011

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