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Out There Monthly / september 2014

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Anticipation. Time to find your gear and wax it up, put winter tires on the rig, save your pocket change for mountain brownies, watch your favorite shred movie, and get stoked. Do yourself a favor and save up to a hundred bucks by buying your season pass before October 31st. Now do your snow dance and wait. Not so patiently.

S E A S O N PA S S E S O N S A L E T H R O U G H O C T 3 1 | W W W. M T S P O K A N E .C O M September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


InThisIssue p.5 / From the Editor


Ten More Years

p.6 / Out There News

Out There Monthly / September 2014

p.8 / Hike of the month White Mountain (Kettle River Range)

p.10 / Disk Golf Local Scene Soaring Publishers

Shallan & Derrick Knowles Editor

Derrick Knowles

p.11 / Everyday Cyclist BIke Commuting Kills Road Rage.

Visual Editor

Shallan Knowles senior writers

p.12 / Race Report p.13 / Book Reviews p.14 / biking Bike Helena

p.15 / biking It’s Cyclocross Time

p.16 / Running Running with Dogs

p.17 / Skiing

Jon Jonckers Brad Naccarato Amy Silbernagel McCaffree Contributing Writers:

S. Michal Bennett Katie Botkin Marla Emde Hank Greer Sarah Hauge Derrick Knowles Bea Lackaff Ammi Midstokke Skye Schillhammer Aaron Theisen Holly Weiler Peter G. Williams Contributing photographers:

Mike Artz Natalie Countiss Christi Masi SKye Schillhammer David Uhlenkott

Local Skier Makes it to the Big Time Calendar Coordinator

p.18 / Fishing A Small Slice of Heaven

p.19 / Out There Kids 12 Reasons to go Camping with your Kids

Allen Duffy online content coordinator

Crystal Gartner Circulation director

Dezi Nagyfy to request copies caLl

509 / 822 / 0123

p.20-21 / INW OUTDOOR & 6-Month Training Calendar

Ad Sales

Derrick Knowles: 509 / 822 / 0123 Out There Monthly

p.22 /Uncommon Adventures P.25 / Skiing

Summer Skiing in the Cascades

P.26 / Fishing

Spokane Riverkeeper

P.27 / Road Trip Methow Valley

P.28 / climbing McLellan’s Middle Finger of Fury

p.29 / Climbing New Climbing in North Idaho

p.30 / Last Page Ten Years Out There

On The Cover: Taking a break for a kootenay lake view along the newtsac trail on Nelson’s north Shore Photo: Skye Schillhammer


Out There Monthly / september 2014

Mailing Address: PO Box #5 Spokane, WA 99210, 509 / 822 / 0123 FIND US ON FACEBOOK Out There Monthly is published once a month by Out There Monthly, LLC. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent of the publisher. ©Copyright 2014 Out There Monthly, LLC. The views expressed in this magazine reflect those of the writers and advertisers and not necessarily Out There Monthly, LLC. 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 areknowledgeable about the risks, and are personally willing to assume all responsibility associated with those risks.

Printed on 50% recycled paper with soy based inks in the Spokane Valley


FromTheEditor: Ten More Years This month marks Out There Monthly’s 10th anniversary. Over the past decade, OTM has grown and evolved into the publication you’re holding in your hands today. It took the vision and tenacity of OTM Founder Jon Snyder to take a good idea and turn it into a valuable outdoor recreation and travel resource. And without the creativity of dozens of writers and photographers over the years who were passionate about sharing their outdoor recreation stories and knowledge with others, our readership wouldn’t have kept growing. While Shallan and I have only been at the Out There helm for a little over a year now, we want to recognize the loyal advertisers and readers that have been critical to OTM’s success. Without the commitment of a

few stellar businesses that supported OTM from the beginning (and are still with us today), you wouldn’t be reading the 121st issue right now. A big shout out to local business rock stars Mountain Gear, Fitness Fanatics, North Division Bicycle Shop, Mt. Spokane Ski & Snowboard Park, 49 Degrees North Mountain Resort, Schweitzer Mountain Resort, Wild Walls, Wheel Sport, Runners Soul, Faust Law Firm, as well as all of our advertisers new and old that make OTM possible and support outdoor recreation. The people who pick up the 24,000 copies of Out There every month, from Spokane to Sandpoint and Coeur d’Alene to Moscow, are the core of our region’s unique and thriving outdoors community. All of us at OTM put heart and soul into the words and images on

every page. Thank you for reading each issue, engaging with us on social media, and supporting our awesome advertisers. There would be no Out There without you. Period. For us, quitting other jobs to publish a regional outdoor magazine has been one seriously remarkable and rewarding uncommon adventure. After those first few challenging months of learning the ropes, it’s become a way of life, a monthly cycle like the seasons. Another reason to get outside to play each day, and we love it. Here’s to 10 more years of OTM! // ------------------------------------------------------derrick knowles, editor


All Women’s

Race September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


2014 Newport Autumn Bloom 5K & 10K Fun Run Newport Hospital & Health Services Foundation

September 20, 2014 T.J. Kelly Park 9AM

10 K is a Second Seed Qualifier for Bloomsday 2015!


(Corner of 1st St. and Washington Ave.)

Tourism support for 2014Autumn Bloom is provided by City of Newport Hotel/Motel Tax Funds.

Newport, WA

Register online at or download registration form at Pre-registration Deadline: 9/15/2014


Jenny Smith, Foundation Director Telephone: 509.447.7928

On-site Registration: 7:30AM - 8:30AM


OutThereNews Runner Reaches 300 Flying Irish Run Mark

By every measurement, Spokane’s Flying Irish Running Club is the largest social running club in America. Established in 2006, the club runs roughly forty times each year, with over 400 people turning out for its weekly runs. Thursday, August 7, marked a new milestone for one club member – Brendan Dowling notched his 300th run. The club founder, Peter Breach, was the first to reach the 100 run mark, and there are over a dozen members with 200 runs to their name. However, Dowling is the first to cross the 300 mark. The second and third place spots have roughly 270 plus runs to their name, but there are only 16 runs remaining in 2014. The next runner

to reach that mark will have to wait until 2015. When asked about his favorite season to run with the Flying Irish, Dowling’s reply was fitting for a serious runner living in a four-season climate. “I think each part of the season has unique aspects that I enjoy, but my favorite season is spring. Everyone is always excited about the return of the Flying Irish and nice weather.” The Flying Irish meets at Ripples Riverside Grille (700 N Division, downtown Spokane) every Thursday night, March through November, at 5:45 p.m. (unless otherwise noted on the club’s website). // (Jon Jonckers)

Film Documents Life of Local Climbing Legend Chris Kopczynski’s broad range of travel experiences and mountaineering accomplishments continues to amaze people from every generation. He partnered with John Roskelley in 1974 to become the first American team to climb the North Face of the Eiger. He became the ninth American to climb Mount Everest in 1981. And he summited the Seven Summits in 1994. Other notable ascents include Peak Lenin, McKinley, Aconcagua, the Eiger, Matterhorn, Kilimanjaro, Chephron, Rainier (51 times), and Chimney Rock (more than 35 times). When he decided to make a movie that presented a good chunk of his past and a significant portion of his most recent time spent in Alaska, the film sort of named itself. “Wisdom Earned” follows Kopczynski up one final mountain, and it’s a captivating story about the price he pays each time he attempts to climb Mount Fairweather. At age 63, can he do it?

Beyond the arc of the climbing story, Kopczynski reflects on the environment and the ongoing destructive changes taking place on the world’s largest glaciers. Wisdom Earned shares a unique and uncommon view from one of America’s most unique and uncommon adventurers. The film includes some of his Alaskan fishing exploits, and some stunning archival footage of northwest landmarks. Ultimately, the story ties together at the very end with an inspirational scene. Produced by Kopczynski and Gibby Media in partnership with the Dishman Hills Conservancy, “Wisdom Earned: A Mountain Climber’s Perspective” will be shown on Wednesday, October 8, at 7:30 p.m. at the Bing Crosby Theater. Tickets are available for $17 at all Tickets West Outlets, with all proceeds benefiting the Dishman Hills Conservancy. // (Jon Jonckers)


Family 5 or 10K Run/Walk


8, 2014


Registration $30.00 (Late Registration $35.00)


Out There Monthly / september 2014

Fleet Feet Sports to Open Second Location in Spokane Valley

Sometime in early September, Wade and Julie Pannell, co-owners of Fleet Feet Sports Spokane, will be opening a second Fleet Feet store at 13910 East Indiana Avenue in the Spokane Valley. Fleet Feet Sports is the nation’s largest running specialty franchise with more than 125 stores across the United States. The Pannells opened the first Spokane store just north of downtown in 2012. Fleet Feet Sports specializes in working with customers one-on-one to fit them in the right footwear, apparel, sports bras and accessories. They offer specialty products, educational resources and training opportunities to help people achieve their fitness goals. Fleet Feet Spokane trains over

500 people through its year-round, nationallyrecognized training programs. These programs are for walkers and runners of all ages and abilities – from those who are currently non-active to those preparing for a marathon. “As a locally-owned and operated business with deep roots in this community, we want to be accessible to more people in the greater Spokane area and help more people become healthier and more active,” says Wade Pannell. “Opening a second location in Spokane Valley will allow us to educate more people through clinics and training programs.” //

Orienteering Courses Teach Outdoor Skills

Founded in 1988, the Eastern Washington Orienteering Club holds several orienteering events yearly, including beginner and familyfriendly events at city parks in Spokane and Spokane Valley and more advanced competitive events at Fishtrap Lake and Riverside State Park. Orienteering is a race in wilderness navigation where a person uses a map and a compass to complete a course. It’s an easy outdoor sport to learn, a great team building activity, and ideal for families who enjoy the outdoors. In celebration of National Orienteering Week, the Eastern Washington Orienteering Club will

be hosting a beginner-level outdoor orienteering event at Mirabeau Point Park from 11 a.m. – noon ($5 per person) on Saturday, September 27. Earlier that same day, there’s an introduction to orienteering class at 9:30 a.m. and an orienteering skills class from 1 - 3:30 p.m. that will be offered at Center Place through Spokane Valley Parks and Recreation. The $14 fee for each class includes the outdoor courses. Preregistration by September 25 is required for those two classes but not for the outdoor event. Details are available at To learn more about other EWOC events, visit //

Find Bike Routes and Trails with Your Phone Need to find the best way to get somewhere on your bike or map the safest route to work? Looking for the perfect trail for a weekend ride? Want to find the closest bike shop to wherever you are? The Spokane Regional Transportation Council teamed up with local jurisdictions to create an interactive 2014 Spokane Regional Bike Map to help you navigate all of Spokane County via bike. You can pan and zoom to different parts of the map, such as your neighborhood or route to work, to see what your bicycling options are in that area. “If you want to bike in Spokane, this is an essential tool,” says Spokane City Councilmember Jon Snyder, who is also a member of the SRTC Policy Board. “The bike lanes, shared use paths, and

commuter and recreation routes included on the map provide bicyclists with options they may not have been aware of before.” The map shows shared use paths (pathways separating bicycles and pedestrians from motor vehicles), bike lanes, signed shared roadways and shared roadways considered by sponsoring jurisdictions to be the safest for bicycling. There are also commuter and recreational routes that were suggested by local bicycling advocates and icons indicating hills to alert users as to the difficulty of a particular route. Points on the map, such as trailheads, park-and-ride lots and bike shops can be clicked to view what amenities they offer, such as restrooms, parking and bike lockers. Check it out at //

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Visit September 2014

/ Out There Monthly



White Mountain (Kettle River Range, Wash.) The Kettle Crest National Recreation Trail runs 43.55 miles from end to end, but the most scenic section (trust me; I’ve done the entire trail as a “day hike” several times) is the southern terminus at White Mountain. The impressive looking high point looming over the parking area at White Mountain trailhead is merely a subsidiary peak that hikers must rise above on their way to the true summit. At 6,921 feet, it’s the seventh tallest peak on the Kettle Crest. The trail begins in a rapidly regenerating lodgepole pine forest that cropped up in the wake of the 1988 lightning-caused White Mountain fire that burned 20,000 acres along the Crest. As the trail climbs through a series of switchbacks, the new pines gradually give way to much older survivors: massive ponderosa pines and western larch bearing scars of numerous fires over their long lifetimes. Beneath the shade provided by their canopy, you’ll find native grass and late-blooming wildflowers, and if one is lucky, a few lingering huckleberries. At the top of the climb, locate the old spur trail leading to the summit, the site of a former fire lookout tower. On a clear day, the Cascades are visible to the west and Lake Roosevelt can be seen to the southeast. It’s a 6-mile roundtrip hike to the top and back, a hike that’s suitable for kids and dogs (beware of unwanted interactions with wolves, bears, and other wildlife). // Getting There: From Kettle Falls, take Highway 395 west across the Columbia River. Turn left (west) on Highway 20 toward Republic. Continue 10.4 miles and turn left onto South Fork Sherman Creek Road (FR2020). At a fork at mile 6.5, bear left onto Barnaby Creek Road (FR 2014). At 10.4 miles, bear right on FR 250 and continue for about 4 miles to the signed trailhead for White Mountain.

Hike of the month and image by holly weiler//

Stimulate your senses! UPCOMING EVENTS:

Sufferfest, Aug. 30-Sept. 1, Kaslo, BC Queen City Cruise Car Show, Sept. 5-7, Nelson, BC Kootenay Spirit Festival, Sept. 12-14, Nelson, BC Classic British Car Show, Sept. 27-28, Kaslo, BC and so much more...

Visit now!

Nelson Kootenay Lake Tourism Nelson • Balfour • Ainsworth Hot Springs Kaslo • Meadow Creek • Lardeau BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA 8

Out There Monthly / september 2014

September 2014

/ Out There Monthly



Local Disk Golf Scene Soaring // By Bea Lackaff

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Joe tosses the disk while kate looks on and Dexter the dog runs for the next hole. // Photo: Bea Lackaff

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Deer Park, WA Sept 21 A Lukemia & Lymphoma Society Benefit Run or walk a route through Deer Park that includes the town’s two roundabouts. Presented by

register @


Out There Monthly / september 2014

“It’s a labor of sheer passion, the combination of nature and exercise – it’s a joy to crush a mean drive off the tee pad and to watch the flight of the disc.” So Shawna Buzzingham, just back from the Professional Disc Golf Association World Championships in Portland, describes playing her favorite sport. Buzzingham placed 25th in the top tier women’s division. About a dozen pro players from Spokane competed in Portland, just one indication that this fast-growing sport is alive and well here in the Inland Empire. Disc golf is a lot like regular golf, with some huge exceptions. First, the player winds up and throws a flying disc, rather than smacking a small dimpled ball with a club. (The disc is no longer commonly called the trademarked “Frisbee”). Launching the first drive from a tee pad, the player strives to make the minimum number of throws to ultimately toss (putt) the disc into the target – a chain basket around a metal pole. Disc golf is a sport where age is no object and money isn’t either. Spokane pro-player and course designer Jeremy Thorton says he makes friends whenever he plays and learns from everyone, whether they are 14 or 74. He points out that a family can spend $10 a piece for a new disc, which gets them set up to play a few holes for free at a public course nearly year-round. The first blossoming of the sport was in the 60s. The forefathers were associated with a certain free-spirited, tie-dyed and granola crunching crowd. Now the sport is nationwide and worldwide. Players come from all walks of life; churches and schools everywhere are putting in 9-hole courses and getting kids outside. Tournaments are held in over 40 different countries, and it’s estimated that the sport is growing by 12-15% a year. “It’s no wonder that more and more people are playing disc golf. It’s such a casual, easy sport. It’s like taking a little walk, and leaning over now and then to toss the disc. But then you get hooked. First, you learn the basics; then you start studying the better players and learning from them; eventually you create your own style,” explains Nancy

Morgan, a Spokane disc golf pro and tournament organizer. In spite of disc golf ’s surging popularity, it is largely ignored by big corporate sponsors. The recent Disc Golf Champion of the World received a $5,000 cash prize and had to pay for his own transportation, food and lodging. Professionals are playing for love and traveling on their own dime. The shared goal of the top players, says Buzzingham, is not money or personal glory so much as it is “to grow the sport, teach the young, and share the love.” The disc golf community provides all the hospitality they can to traveling players. The shared love of the sport creates camaraderie and even a sense of family among people who might have little else in common. If you haven’t already played, get out there and send a disc flying – enjoy the satisfying clang as it settles into the chain basket; experience what all the enthusiasm is about! Disc Golf Tournaments Coming Up Local tournaments are another expression of regional enthusiasm and support for disc golf. On September 13-14, Stimpi Ridge disc golf course is hosting a PDGA C Tier event (geared more toward having fun and improving skills). Players at all levels can play three private courses in one weekend: Stimpi Ridge, TNT Acres, and Happy Hill Disc Golf Courses. This tournament makes it easy to get acquainted with the three local private courses. Normally, private courses require calling first for permission to play, and learning the boundaries and mandatories of the course. Private courses are usually smaller than public courses, but may be more challenging. The General Store’s 3rd Annual B Tier Open (this tier includes a little more cash for winners) will take place October 4-5 at the Downriver and High Bridge public courses. There will be multiple divisions: men and women; junior and novice; and recreation, amateur, and pro. For more information and to register, visit (and enter the date of the tournament). Players in both tournaments get a t-shirt and a disc. //

Where to Play: Inland Northwest Public Disc Golf Courses

Public disc golf courses in the Spokane area are High Bridge, Downriver, and Camp Sekani. In North Idaho, there is Farragut State Park with three courses and a 9-hole putting course. There’s also a course at Corbin Park in Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene has two public courses: Cherry Hill Park and Bluegrass Park. And Sandpoint has a new 18-hole course; $1 to play the Baldfoot DGC, with funds going back to the course.


Can Bike commuting kill road rage? // By Hank Greer

Be a good driver, watch for bikes. // Photo: Hank Greer

Years ago I was driving up to a stop sign and getting ready to make a right turn. I looked to my left, didn’t see any cars, and started to go when my wife yelled, “Watch out!” I hit the brakes and a young man on a bicycle rolled by in front of me. I did not see him. Well, to be more precise, I did not look for him. There is a difference. I made a mental note of that close call thinking it would help me remember to look for bikes in the future. I was wrong. That note quickly fell off my mental corkboard. But these days I remember all the time. Why? Because I bike commute. Bike commuting has made me a better driver. Riding in traffic on a bike makes me more vulnerable, and as a result of that, I am more vigilant and observant. As a cyclist I don’t expect to be seen by drivers, so I’m always in a defensive mode. I’m ready to take evasive action when an oncoming car turns left across my path or when a car to my right turns onto the roadway in front of me. I have avoided many close calls over the years simply because I was

since discarded that irrational score keeping system. It really did nothing more than stress me out and unnecessarily so. I look back with incredulity and wonder why I put myself through all that. I was thinking in a counter-productive manner. It was all about comparing myself to everyone else. I was ignoring my own wellbeing. Bike commuting has taught me to slow down and relax when I drive. On the rare occasions when I drive to work, I stick pretty close to the speed limit. I don’t mind other drivers passing me because their progress is completely unrelated to my progress. I’ve learned that any time I save by keeping score is meaningless. If I arrived at a parking spot a minute later than I used to, I would still get to my desk on time. So now I avoid the self-induced stress. I let people out when they’re trying to exit with their drive-through coffee in hand. I don’t concern myself with my progress compared to everyone else. I don’t ascribe intent to every swerve, honk, or loud acceleration. I don’t take it personally when another driver

There’s a question in the bike commuting world that cyclists use to contrast their commuting to the majority who drive to work. “When do you hear someone say they had a fun drive to work?” paying attention. By the way, not looking for bicycles is not a behavior unique to vehicle drivers. I’ve had two close calls with other cyclists because they were looking for cars and not bikes. These experiences have made me more aware of bike and pedestrian traffic while I’m behind the wheel of a car. Bike commuting has also helped me slow down as a driver. My commute to work is about 10 miles. In the old days, I was always on a point system when I was driving. If I was in the faster moving lane and getting ahead of other cars, I was up in points. If I was stuck behind a bus while cars passed by on my left, my points went down. Going 10-15 over the speed limit was not unusual. Besides, everybody else was doing it, which makes it even easier to rationalize. Over and over I joined the race to the next red light. If someone darted ahead and then squeezed into the gap in front of me, I was down a point. That used to bug me, but not anymore. I’ve long

is inconsiderate. I see bikes and pedestrians while I’m driving, and I give them plenty of room. I don’t mind the time I spend behind a cyclist waiting for a space that will allow me to safely pass them by. I look for cyclists, and I appreciate it when they follow the rules of the road. They’re more predictable. I’m extremely cautious around those who ride unsafely – as long as I can see them. There’s a question in the bike commuting world that cyclists use to contrast their commuting to the majority who drive to work. “When do you hear someone say they had a fun drive to work?” In my experience it’s a valid point. Even in my more relaxed mode, driving is not fun, but it’s a lot less aggravating than it used to be. Yet it doesn’t come close to the enjoyment I get from riding. Nor does it result in such a positive state of mind. //

photo: matt vielle

Bring this ad in for

1 Hr East of Spokane! Kellogg, ID

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Bike Park Ticket Not Valid after 10/5/14 September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


RaceReport Round “About 5k” to Fight Leukemia and Lymphoma (September 21)

Manito Park Costume Run for Parents and Kids (October 4)

Run or walk a weaving and winding route through the streets of Deer Park, Wash. that incorporates the town’s two roundabouts on Sunday, September 21. This fun community run or walk is put on by Deer Park Physical Therapy and Fitness Center as a benefit for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The scenic course is about 5K long and is suitable for strollers. “We wanted to do something to promote wellness in our community,” says Beverly Roberts with Deer Park Physical Therapy and Fitness Center. “Several of us have family members or friends who have been touched by leukemia or lymphoma, and the Round “About 5k” is a chance to raise money to help patients and work toward

Three Stone Foundation is hosting a 5K and 1 mile fun run at Manito Park on Saturday, October 4 where parents and kids are encouraged to dress as their favorite book character. Proceeds from this family-friendly event will go toward diapers and books for low-income children in the Spokane area. Three Stone Foundation assists low income kids with early reading, basic needs, and obesity prevention. Children from low income families participate in one-on-one picture book reading with a parent for 25 hours before the first grade, while middle-class children are read to on an

a cure. It’s something we can all do in honor of loved ones who have died from or are battling leukemia or lymphoma.” Approximately every four minutes one person in the United States is diagnosed with a blood cancer, joining the estimated 957,902 people in the US who are living with or are in remission from, leukemia, Hodgkin lymphoma, NHL or myeloma. After the race, prizes will be handed out to the top overall male and female finishers, with prizes for each age group as well. Registration is $18 before September 12, which guarantees you a shirt, and $28 after that. For more info, visit www.

average of 1,000-1,700 hours by first grade. This language gap creates huge learning potential deficiencies that translate into lower achievement in school and in the workforce. Making small changes early in a child’s life through education to parents and donations of new books and basic necessities can have a huge impact on their future. Register by September 19 to guarantee a t-shirt – late registration is available until the day of the race. A post-run fundraiser will be held at Chipolte Mexican Grill. More info: Threestone. org or //

Round About 5K runners in Deer Park.

New Date for Tour de Rock Mountain Bike Ride (October 4) An annual tradition up at 49 Degrees North Mountain Resort, the Tour de Rock mountain bike ride returns this year with a date change from what was promoted earlier in the summer. Set for Saturday, October 4, the fun, fat-tired day of riding in the Selkirk Mountains is a fundraiser for the 49 Degrees North Winter Sports Foundation. While the main mountain course isn’t technical, the rough road conditions make a mountain bike with or without suspension your best bike choice for the ride. Chewelah local Rone Katzer who owns Redline Finishing and The Body Shop fitness center in town has been a major sponsor of Tour de Rock over the years and did the 10 mile ride from Chewelah up to the ski hill last year for the first time. “It was an awesome ride and fun climb,” says Katzer. “It’s a great community event that we hope

will continue to bring more bike riders and summer recreation up to Chewelah and 49 Degrees North.” The “Citizen’s Course” includes a climb up through Sunrise Basin on gravel roads, then a traverse across the face of the mountain and finally a fun downhill run back to the lodge with refreshments, great views and support services along the way. For those looking for more of a challenge, the “Rough Ride 4,000” course starts in Chewelah at the city park and includes over 2,000 feet of climbing on a paved route up to the to the ski resort before tackling the mountain course climb and descent. Post-ride festivities include barbeque, beer, and live music back at the lodge. Maps and profiles of the routes, plus more event details and registration information are available at //

Run Along Priest Lake (September 27) Priest Lake is a scenic gem that seems to get even more beautiful and serene in the cooler days of late September. It’s the perfect place for a memorable race. Each fall, Priest Lake Multisports puts together a selection of scenic race lengths on unpaved forest service roads along the lakeshore, including the Priest Lake 12

Out There Monthly / september 2014

Marathon, 50K, half marathon, 25K, and 5K. Run through groves of old growth cedar trees and enjoy big views of the Selkirk Mountains. The race includes full course support like a road race, but with the scenery of a trail run. This year’s race is set for Saturday, September 27. Register at //

Bikes with Style

BookReviews Fiva: An Adventure That Went Wrong Gordon Stainforth, Mountaineers Books, 2013 (208 pages)

Gordon Stainforth’s “Fiva: An Adventure That Went Wrong,” is the best outdoor adventure book I have ever read, bar none. Until I read this book, I believed that the famous high altitude British mountaineer Doug Scott’s epic account of his survival story on The Ogre in the Pakistan Karakoram could never be matched. “Fiva” surpassed it. The book is an account of Stainforth’s youth when, in 1969, he and his teenage twin brother John, both moderately accomplished mountaineers, attempted a day climb on the 4,000 foot long Troll Wall in Norway. After three days on the “Fiva” route, they barely survived a successful ascent. Intending initially to only read the first four pages to get a flavor of the book, I could not put it down, so engrossing and well-written was the story. Seldom is a mountaineering epic written where you feel like you are there on the face, in the cold, confused by the route finding, one minute optimistic, another minute terrified that you may never return. What makes this book truly special is how well it accounts, in first person narration, the youthful exuberance of relatively novice mountaineers. As they approach this massive wall, the author states, “Now, dwarfed by an outrageous landscape of mountain superlatives, my heart is pounding with excitement, a strange mixture of fear and anticipation.” In addition, the author perfectly describes the dangerous naivety of youth, and yet explains the discovery of courage and resourcefulness that these young men had no idea was within them. Without giving too much away, what went wrong on the climb was a combination of youthful fanaticism, a lack of adequate food provisions for a big wall, and the inability to understand that a lack of great technical difficulty does not mean a lack of a serious climbing endeavor. These factors were further compounded by a very long route with extremely difficult route finding. “Fiva: An Adventure That Went Wrong” was the winner of the Mountain Literature Award at the 2012 Banff Mountain Festival. This book earned that recognition, and I suggest you read it, and pick up a copy for your friends. // (Peter G. Williams)


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The Mountain: My Time on Everest

Ed Viesturs and David Roberts, Touchstone, 2013 (330 pages)

Viesturs and Roberts book, “The Mountain,” provides a fascinating historical account of Mount Everest. Viesturs has successfully climbed Mt. Everest seven times, and is the only American to have climbed all fourteen of the world’s 8,000-meter mountains without supplemental oxygen. The author states that he has “combed the accounts of the last nine decades to glean the nuggets of heroism and self-sacrifice – as well as, on the other hand, obsessed ambition and raw rivalry – that are sewn into the very cliffs and glaciers of that imposing mountain.” The book offers lots of interesting nuggets of information. For example, the Tibetans know Everest as Chomolungma, which means Goddess Mother of the World. The Nepalis call it Sagarmatha, which means Goddess of the Sky. Westerners named it Mount Everest in 1865 in honor of Sir George Everest, the English surveyor general. Viesturs provides great anecdotes concerning the history of Everest. After Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay completed the first successful climb in 1953, Hillary later recounted, “Both Tenzing and I thought that once we’d climbed the mountain, it was unlikely anyone would ever make another attempt. We couldn’t have been more wrong.” There is also the amazing story of the first ascent of the Southwest Face in 1975 by Doug Scott and Dougal Haston. The descent involved the highest bivouac possible right on the South Summit, which Haston later called the coldest bivouac of his life. Part of the appeal of the book is the insight provided into Viesturs’ personal climbing philosophy. For example, he states, “Reaching the summit is optional. Getting down is mandatory.” He shares legendary mountaineer Eric Shipton’s philosophy to climb alpine-style, fast and light. Viesturs writes, “Shipton laid down the dictum that if an expedition could not be planned on the back of an envelope in a few hours in a pub, it wasn’t worth going on.” Viesturs sums up his experience on Everest this way: “No terrain anywhere in the world had been the arena for so many profound moments in my life, ranging from the wonderful to the heartbreaking.” // (Peter G. Williams)

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Season Ender Benefit at the Rocket Market September 27, 6-10 pm Live Music Beer from local breweries

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Proceeds benefit Evergreen East Mountain Biking Alliance For more details, and to learn about our upcoming skills class on 9/27, visit September 2014

/ Out There Monthly



Bike Helena

Montana’s Mountain Biking Capital // By Aaron Theisen One-hundred fifty years ago, get-rich-quick schemers struck gold in what is now Helena in southwest Montana. More recently, the dry, fir-adorned foothills flanking Montana’s capital have produced riches for mountain bikers. Tucked in a “banana belt” on the dry east slope of the Continental Divide, about a five hour drive from Spokane, Helena sees a snow-free riding season from late March through November. Consider it Montana’s version of the Methow Valley: short on big-hit bombing and long on aerobic, not-tootechnical trail riding, complete with a laid-back cycling culture – riders here are far more likely to rave about a trail than rate your gear.

sun-baked ascent rewards riders with seven miles of fast singletrack through open, blueberry-carpeted rock gardens and vast meadows. The gold hue of grasses and vast views east to the Little Belt Mountains may even inspire riders to stop and stare agape. At the east end of the route, the trails get congested with hikers, trail runners and dog walkers near the summit of Mount Helena City Park, the most popular hike in the city. Your best bet: save the summit for a side hike and drop off the back side on McKelvey Trail for a quick descent down a rockstrewn gully to Grizzly Gulch and a cooldown cruise on pavement past historic Reeder’s Alley.

A Single Track at the End of Every Street Forward-thinking cyclists, in concert with the Prickly Pear Land Trust, have quietly developed an extensive trail network across two city parks, Forest Service land and easements through private property that has turned Helena into a destination mountain bike town: the International Mountain Biking Association has recognized Helena as one of 16 bronze-level Ride Centers in the world, among the likes of Steamboat Springs and Aspen Snowmass. Much of the credit for that distinction goes to a bike-friendly infrastructure: downtown Helena operates the free Trail Rider shuttle, which ferries riders and their bikes to a rotating roster of trailheads Wednesdays through Sundays from June through August and on weekends in September. And with a trailhead seemingly at the end of every street, it’s easy to strike out on your own to explore Montana’s Gold Country.

Downtown Helena—A Bike Friendly Hub Road-tripping mountain bikers can stay downtown for a car-free weekend of riding. The Holiday Inn in the heart of the historic Last Chance Gulch walking district defines “bike friendly”: hop on the Trail Rider shuttle right outside the hotel, and, post-ride, roll your bike right into the elevator and up to your room. Before catching the Trail Rider, walk north on Last Chance Gulch to the intimate No Sweat Café for hearty homestyle breakfasts; the breakfast scrambles will provide plenty of carbs and protein for a full day of sweating and smiling. Conveniently located near the mouths of several South Hill gulches, Blackfoot River Brewing Company makes a great – albeit crowded – postride gathering spot. The promise of a rooftop table and Single Malt IPA may inspire you to finish your ride early. Just up the street, the Old Miner’s Dining Club offers casual but high-quality barbeque. Located in the historic Caretaker’s Cabin on Reeder Street – one of the oldest houses in Helena – proprietor Jim Sobonya, the descendant of Montana miners, prepares everything on a massive gas grill outside. Jim and his wife also boast the only gluten-free kitchen in Helena; try the cheesecake on gluten-free graham cracker crust.

South Hills Trail System Introduce yourself to the Queen City with a cruise through quiet Victorian-era neighborhoods on your way to any of the gulches in the South Hills trail system, the centerpiece of Helena’s vast mountain biking and hiking trail network. Several legstretchers depart from Davis Gulch; try Eagle Scout and Archery Range for a fast, non-technical loop through open, arid forest. Or, from the top of Eagle Scout, play on Pay Dirt, which features tight boulder gardens and a handful of nice kicker jumps. On the east side of the South Hills trail system, the Eddye McClure trail will test experienced riders’ switchback skills. From the Trail Rider shuttle-accessible east end, warm up with 15 minutes of tightturning and thigh-burning climbing before reaching the ridgeline. Here, experience what locals refer to as “magic dirt,” a crushed limestone that drains quickly but holds its form when dry, a reprieve from the summertime dust bowl conditions typical of some Spokane area trails. The unique limestone trail

Photo top: South hills singletrack. Bottom: flying through fields of wildflowers. // Photos: Aaron Theisen

composition forgives speed on the off-camber tread and tight switchbacks, but the narrow, handlebarcrowding doghair firs will test your concentration and nerve. Views are scant on this thickly timbered route, but you’ll need all your focus just ahead of your front wheel anyway. Connect into the Mount Ascension City Park trail network at the west end of the route for a commanding view – Helena below, the Sleeping Giant to the north, the Little Belt island range to the southeast.

Descend back to town on Entertainment’s highspeed, swooping singletrack through meadows and doghair timber. Turn-for-turn, this is one of the most grin-inducing trails in the South Hills system. During the Trail Rider shuttle service season (which includes weekends in September), catch a ride on Saturday and Sunday mornings to the west end trailhead for Mount Helena Ridge, easily one of the premier “urban” singletrack rides in the Northwest. From the trailhead, a stiff 15-minute,

When You Go: Start planning your trip in advance by spending some time online with Bike Helena, an awesome cycling resource for locals and visitors: You’ll find more ride recommendations, photos and video, event information, trail news, and additional accommodation recommendations. Check out their calendar to plan your trip around one of many bike events, races, and rides they have set for September. //





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Out There Monthly / september 2014

Biking It’s Cyclocross Time

Join the Party as a Rider or Spectator // By Marla Emde After an active season of road cycling or mountain biking, it’s time to start thinking about shifting gears and getting ready for the cyclocross season. What is cyclocross? Cross is a fall and winter cycling sport originally designed for the “off season” to help maintain fitness, improve skills and spice things up throughout the fall and winter months. With a long history in Europe, cyclocross is now the most popular cycling discipline in the U.S. Why so popular? It’s a discipline and distance that doesn’t take a huge amount of training hours, is as serious as you want it to be and is very spectator friendly. Cyclocross has exploded in this country like mud runs have to running. It’s just plain fun. Cross hotbeds in this country see well over 1,000 plus riders out for a weekend of cyclocross racing and partying! Seattle, Portland and several New England cities boast huge participation and host National, UCI or world cup events regularly. Grassroots racing is a large part of this growth, emphasizing participation and fun. Riders and spectators alike don crazy costumes, enjoy beer hand ups, and ring cowbells that resonate loudly throughout the venue. Rain, sleet, and snow provide the best cyclocross conditions – the muddier, the better! And though most of the racers come for the fun, the elite races are still a highlight. Watching the finely honed skills of an elite cyclocross racer is something to be appreciated. It’s also a family affair with most cross races hosting junior and youth races, so the entire family can enjoy the day of racing. The courses are short, 1.5-2.5 mile loops, which are very spectator friendly. Course features include various terrain such as pavement, dirt trails, grass, sand, gravel, steep hills that require carrying your bike on your shoulder and navigating obstacles and wooden planks (called barriers) that require dismounting and remounting the bike several times per lap. Cyclocross events provide many levels of racing from beginner to elite for various age groups. Races are held by time, not distance, much like the criterium style of road racing. Races range from 20-30 minutes for junior categories and up to 60 minutes for the more advanced categories. Course terrain and

skill levels will dictate how long the laps take. Everyone finishes on the same lap even if you are one or two laps behind the leader. Cyclocross is similar to mountain biking with its off road challenges and skills but also inherits traits of a road criterium with high speed and high intensity. Do you need a cross bike to try cyclocross? Not necessarily. A Cyclocross bike may be more advantageous when carrying the bike, as weight is an issue, but a mountain bike will certainly get you started and get the job done. Are you ready to give cyclocross racing or watching a try this fall? The Inland Northwest Cyclocross Series is just around the corner, featuring races in Walla Walla, Mead, Spokane, Coeur d’Alene and Moscow. The Wild West Dylan Pollard Cyclocross series also hosts races in Idaho and Montana. reaches the top of the Run New for 2014, the WSBA is hosting a cyclocross series with Up. // Photo: several locations around the state. The series lands in Spokane Hank Greer for Round 4 and 5 November 22-23 at Riverside State Park. Watch some of the best cyclocross riders in the Northwest compete for championship titles. More info at // 2014 Inland NW Cyclocross Schedule October 18 – #1 Palouse Cross at Sky Ranch – Moscow October 25 – #2 Memorial Pool – Walla Walla October 26 – #3 Rooks Park – Walla Walla November 9 – #4 Apple Cross at Walters Fruit Ranch – Mead (Green Bluff) November 16 – #5 Coeur d’Alene (TBA) November 22 – Riverside Rumble – Part of the WSBA CX series November 23 – WSBA Association Championships December 14 – #6 INWCXS Finals – Medical Lake, Waterfront Park

History, culture, more than gold in our backyard.



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September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


“'Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it.” ~Oprah Winfrey



Huckleberry’s Main Market Pilgrim’s Market Or

Running Running with Dogs // By Sarah Hauge I knew very little about dogs when my husband and I got one eight years ago, a scruffy, medium-sized shelter dog we named Emmy. But there was one thing I definitely looked forward to: running together. She would be my live-in running partner, an always-ready pal who could give me the appearance of protection on remote trails or dark evenings, who would pace me step for step, paw for foot. Reality, as always, was a bit different from the daydream. Emmy is built for short sprints; I like to run (relatively) long and slow. I run outside year round; Emmy loves snow but wilts in the summer and avoids water – raindrops, sprinklers, lakes, even puddles – at all costs. Some days Emmy perks her head when I change clothes, eagerly hoping I’m putting on my running gear; on other days we’re barely to the end of the block before she’s hot or tired, lagging behind like a dawdling toddler as I cling to the leash, my arm outstretched behind my back. We’ve had some great runs (A+) and a few terrible ones (D), but most I’d rate somewhere in the middle (solid B). Over the years my dog knowledge has grown, largely imparted by people much smarter about this stuff than I am. If you’re thinking about running with your dog, the following tips might help. Basic Training Invest in basic obedience training, either on your own or through a dog school. Your runs will be

Run with Your Dog HandsFree with the EzyDog Road Runner Leash

infinitely better once you’ve taught your dog to listen to your voice, to heel, and to walk (and then run) on one side of your body (versus crossing back and forth at will). When we run, Emmy knows she should be on my right side. Know Your Pup Is your dog capable of running? Consult your vet first. Generally, it’s best to wait until a young dog’s bone growth plates are closed before they begin vigorous activity, which can take eight months to two years. Getting in shape takes time, for dogs as well as people. Build endurance gradually. Remember that it also takes time to toughen up a dog’s sensitive paw pads. Even when your dog is physically fit, you may still have to tailor your run for them. Some dogs can run, tirelessly, for hours. For others (like mine), a short run is plenty. Generally, I take Emmy with me for a mile or two before dropping her off at home and continuing on my way. Think About Supplies A good 4-6 foot leash (not a retractable leash) and collar may be all you need. You might also prefer a hands-free leash. The number one best piece of equipment I have is a harness that pulls out from Emmy’s chest, which curbs her impulse to pull ahead. Also, always (ALWAYS) bring a plastic bag (or more than one!). Take it from me: the day you are sure you don’t need one is the day your dog will do their business in your neigh-

bor’s yard while they watch from the window. Check in with Your Dog Your dog is your dependent, and you are responsible for their well-being. Keep your dog safe by checking for things like hot pavement, broken glass, or ice. If your dog limps or licks their paws, stop and examine them right away. Watch out for signs of distress, like foaming at the mouth, glazed eyes, slowing, or heavy panting. Stay Hydrated Remember to refuel your dog, not just yourself. On warm days or longer runs, Emmy and I will stop by a park, and I’ll fashion a bowl out of a plastic bag, which I fill with water from a drinking fountain. Remember that some puddle water (tempting to a thirsty dog) can be contaminated. Enjoy It for What It Is There are some dogs and runners who – thanks to a lot of work or just lucky compatibility – run as the perfectly matched pair I once dreamed my dog and I would be. For the rest of us, running with a four-legged pal is as much about compromise as anything else. But it’s worth it. No matter how good or bad the run is, when we get home, Emmy comes over for a pat. She stands in front of me with her tired, happy face, challenges forgotten, silently thanking me for another adventure together. //

I run and walk regularly with my dog Emmy, and I normally use a nondescript leash attached to a harness that pulls out from her chest (which curbs her tendency to pull). When Sandpoint-based company EzyDog offered to send a sample of their hands-free Road Runner Leash, I was eager to try it. The Road Runner Leash is designed to be worn around the waist (or shoulder or hand) and incorporates “Zero Shock Technology,” designed to make running and walking easier on both the dog and the owner. Overall, I really liked the leash, which I used for walks and runs (with and without my jogging stroller and kids in tow). It’s easy to attach to the dog’s collar (or, in my case, her harness, which I used in concert with the leash). Snapping the leash around my waist was quick and easy. (One tip: make sure it’s right side up; it will fit regardless, but there’s a clip that bounced and made an annoying clicking sound when upside down). It was nice to have less to hold onto, and feeling Emmy’s occasional sprints, turns, and stops pull against my waist rather than my more sensitive fingers or wrist was a nice change. I’m sure the shock absorbers also helped reduce the tugging, but I can’t say to what degree. Other great leash features: it’s reflective, it’s easy to unclip from your waist and attach to a tree or pole if you need to tether your dog (rather than removing the leash entirely and fashioning a slip knot, as I usually do), and there’s a D-ring clip for key rings or other items. The leash is seven feet, and my one complaint is that it’s a bit long for me (at 5 foot 4 inches with a small build). The only way to decrease length is to increase the amount of leash that loops around your waist, which would have made the fit too loose. (EzyDog makes other leashes of different lengths, just not this particular one). The Road Runner Leash costs $40 and is available, alongside a host of leashes and other pet products, on the EzyDog website:


Out There Monthly / september 2014

Skiing Local Skier Makes it to the big Time // By Brad Naccarato Warren Miller is considered by many to be the highest stage in the world for snowsport athletes to showcase their talents. Every fall, masses of powder-hungry skiers and riders looking for their annual pre-season stoke flock to local theatres to see the next generation of Warren Miller athletes and the exotic locales where they push the limits of skiing and riding. Once an athlete is featured in Warren Miller, life changes for them in a pretty dramatic way. Ski bums become “professional skiers” overnight. Photo-shoots, sponsorships, ad campaigns and movie contracts are often the norm. For one particular Washington State skier, the dream of being a WM athlete became a reality back in 2008. Six years later, Tyler Ceccanti is now a fixture in the current WM athlete lineup, with this year’s “No Turning Back” being his 5th WM film to date. OTM recently caught up with Ceccanti to find out what being a “big-timer” is all about. OTM: So when, where and how did your ski journey begin? Ceccanti: I grew up in Lake Tapps, just outside of Seattle. Lots of people taught me how to ski and progress, but it was my mom and dad who first got me on the slopes at the young age of 2. I started skiing at Crystal Mountain, and I continue to live and ski there. OTM: How does an everyday ski bum become a member of the Warren Miller athlete cast?


Ceccanti: Back in 2008, WM was shooting a segment at my home mountain, and they needed a skier for a backcountry segment. The staff at Crystal suggested me, and the rest is history. OTM: Do you have any notable accomplishments in skiing? Awards? Ceccanti: I competed a lot when I was younger on the Junior Freeride Tour and won a couple stops along with being invited to and winning People’s Choice at the Redbull Coldrush in 2008. I also take pride in any photos I get published in mags, along with any films I am in. OTM: Who are your skier heroes? Ceccanti: My biggest idol would have to be Seth Morrison. When I first saw him sending huge backflips on big lines it really inspired me, and he is still out there killing it. OTM: Do you ski year-round? Ceccanti: I love the four seasons here in the Northwest. I spend about 100 days a year on snow, but when spring comes, I’m definitely ready to hang my skis up and start wakeboarding. I also love downhill mountain bike racing – especially on the courses at Schweitzer and Silver Mountain. OTM: Without giving too much away, what’s your segment in “No Turning Back” look like this year?

Tyler ripping the pow in Greece

Ceccanti: We went to Greece, and I was totally blown away by what we found. I never would have thought about skiing in Greece in a million years, but it was pretty cool.

Look for Tyler and the rest of the gang in this year’s Warren Miller feature “No Turning Back” in theaters this fall. Check out the complete list of Northwest tour dates at //



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Fishing A Small Slice of Fly Fishing Heaven

The North Fork of the CDA River // By Brad Naccarato

North fork CDA: An angler’s paradise. // Photo David Uhlenkott

The North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River – a western, freestone masterpiece – is what fishy dreams are made of: crystal clear waters, old growth forests, mountains for miles, and, of course, a healthy population of brilliantly colored, native westslope cutthroat trout. Located just east of Spokane, the North Fork’s emerald waters originate deep in the Bitterroot Mountains, flowing south for 77 miles before its confluence with the South Fork in the Silver Valley before entering into Lake Coeur d’Alene. The majority of the system is accessible by paved and gravel roads, with a few stretches going deep into roadless regions accessible by foot. The North Fork is a dry fly fisherman’s paradise, where fish rise to dries from Memorial Day weekend all the way through October. Fishing in a place like this is a little like stepping back in time. The fish populations here are 100 percent native, and other than the occasional rustic cabin, the majority of the river valley is void of development. The best part though is the fact that fish numbers are strong and healthy due to conservation efforts over the last couple of decades to improve fish habitat. The introduction of catch and release regulations for specific stretches have also helped. Our wingman for a recent day on the river, Randy Dingman of River Odysseys West (ROW) Adventures is part trout guru, part entertainer. Dingman’s passion and unique personality kept us captivated as we made our way up the river canyon, eyeballing several deep, fishy-looking tail-outs along the way. We sauntered down to a lazy stretch of river with a deep cut-bank on the opposite side and a strong depth change. Dingman whispered some last-minute pearls as I begin my casting wind-up: “Throw up super high there against the wall,” he coaches. “Now mend, mend, mend. Let it drift. Not gonna lie, they’re gonna scrutinize it. They see a lot

Idaho’s Wild & Scenic Rivers

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Out There Monthly / september 2014

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of flies through here, but if it checks out, duuuude they will hammer it, and you’re a rock star!” When targeting westlope cutts, fly selection is not nearly as critical as placement and presentation. Cutts are eager to eat as the high mountain streams they live in do not have the rich food sources that larger, warmer rivers do. However, the gin-clear waters and shallow pools they inhabit afford them the ability to study your fly carefully. Just about anything “buggy” looking can produce results, so long as you remain still, drop it in a feeding zone, and present it without any line drag. After several attempts, I finally got the distance on my cast, placing my fly at the head of the run. I’m fishing a big, ugly hopper on a 9-foot leader. Two strong mends and my fly floats directly over a deep channel that is holding a large, actively feeding fish. She takes one look at it, smacks it hard and the fight is on. Five minutes later, we have a beautiful, healthy 19-inch female cutt in the bottom of the net ready for release. When You Go: The North Fork is about an hour drive from Spokane. Roughly 28 miles east from Coeur d’Alene, the Kingston exit will put you directly on the Coeur d’Alene River Road, which will take you up to the farthest reaches of the system. The farther you drive, the better the fishing and scenery gets. Consider hiring a guide to help get you into the action quicker than most anglers are able to on their own. ROW Adventures offers guided trips on the Coeur d’Alene, St. Joe, Lower Selway, Middle Fork Salmon, and Grand Ronde, with a $45 discount on full-day trips and $25 off halfday trips booked before September 30, 2014. More info: //

The North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene is one of many fabulous options to fish for native westlope cutts in Idaho. While the North Fork isn’t classified as a Wild and Scenic River, many Idaho streams are, making them that much more special of an experience for fisherman. From the white sand beaches of the Salmon River to the cathedral forests of the Lochsa, Idaho’s rivers are some of the most beautiful places in the country. To guarantee that these awe-inspiring rivers and their corridors remain as special as they have always been, many are protected by the National Wild & Scenic Rivers Act. The Wild & Scenic Rivers Act, created by Congress in 1968, preserves and protects certain rivers with outstanding natural, cultural, and recreational values. The act prevents any new dams or harmful water projects, protects riverside lands and wildlife migration corridors, safeguards clean water, requires development of a comprehensive plan to manage the river, and prohibits activities that would diminish the river’s outstanding values. Idaho has approximately 107,651 miles of river, of which 891 miles are designated wild and scenic (less than 1% of the state’s river miles). The upper St. Joe and the Lochsa Rivers are two notable westlope fisheries in our region that are protected under the act. While these rivers are a little more remote in location compared to the North Fork, both boast very healthy trout populations and pristine mountain environments, making them well worth the efforts to get there this fall. //


Summer isn’t over yet: 12 Reasons to Go Camping with Your Kids // By Amy Silbernagel McCaffree Last summer, that little girl crying in the middle of the night at a campground, she was with me. My daughter, newly two years old, was still learning how to sleep well while tent camping. She habitually kicked her legs out of her sleeping bag – inevitably waking up around well before dawn, cold and grumpy. Otherwise, she did great during our family’s four night trip to Glacier National Park. And this summer, she’s three and an entirely different child – biking with her older brother around campground loops, roasting her own marshmallows with skill and confidence, willing to use a vault toilet. Although my son still wins the “Best Tent Sleeper” award, she’s improving. But that’s not the point. The point is to be out there, to teach our children the art of camping. Twenty years from now, when my kids reminisce about their childhoods, I hope they say our family’s outdoor adventures, especially camping, are the highlights as well as the connective thread between their coming-of-age milestones. I now consider camping essentially parenting without walls in the wilderness. Each time we come home after a trip, I start planning our next one. Surviving together in the forest bonds our family in memorable ways. Time slows down and we

laugh more, endure challenges together and better connect in a setting that pushes against the modern American trend to desire only the new, clean and busy. If your family is already a believer in camping – God bless you and your offspring. Keep it up! If you haven’t made the plunge yet, but want to, here are some reasons to compel you. Summer isn’t officially over yet and some campgrounds stay open through the fall. Happy camping!

Roasting lunch between bike rides. // Photo: Amy Silbernagel McCaffree

12 Reasons to Go Camping with Your Kids 1. Moments after arriving at your campsite, your child might exclaim, “This is fun!” And you haven’t even unloaded your gear yet. 2. Kids are inherently happy when playing outdoors. They have fun getting dirty, and there’s growing evidence that a little dirt is good for kids. 3. No television, cell phone coverage or Wi-Fi, and no housework. Forget what you’ve left behind, at both home and work; enjoy your temporary outdoor home, and let the rest go. 4. Camping simplifies life. Your whole family can even wear the same outfits every day and no one will care. 5. Learn what you can live without and still be content and happy. Turns out, kids really don’t need fancy toys, games, and glowing screens to

be happy on vacation. Rocks, dirt, trees and sticks can be a lot of different things with a little imagination. 6. It’s nice to slow down, to live intentionally and make relaxation a priority. Camping should be unhurried and uncomplicated. You wake up, eat breakfast, play, eat lunch, play some more, eat dinner, roast marshmallows, go to bed. Repeat tomorrow. 7. Camping can help teach children self-reliance and courage as much as it teaches them about science and nature. Hands-on learning instills values and lessons that your child will long remember. 8. Encourage and model healthy living and fitness through your family’s activities. Biking, hiking, swimming, reading, fishing, adventures that require cooperation and teamwork – all are worthy pursuits. 9. Take along your dog and observe epic levels of canine joy. 10. Cook over your campfire. With proper safety precautions, a campfire is excellent entertainment. 11. S’mores. 12. After dinner and a long day of playing, your kids will be exhausted and happy to sleep. //

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Visit the Roasting Studio and Café in Sandpoint’s Granary Arts District

September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


OutdoorCalendar Full events calendar at SIXMONTHTRAININGCALENDAR

BIKING (September 6) Huck’en Berries Bike Jam. Where: Rossland, B.C. A branch of the Rossland Rubberhead Bike Festival, with entrant categories running in age from Birth to 11 with the Juniors, Prodigy 11-14, Intermediate 12 and up, and Advanced from 14 and up, entry fees are $35 for Jr & Prodigy, and $45 in the intermediate-advanced division, a bundle of swag accompanying complimentary high-fives. Cost: $35-$45. Info: or 250-231-1481. (September 7) SpokeFest. When: 8:30 a.m. – 2

p.m. Where: Riverfront Park. SpokeFest is the largest bicycling event in the Inland Northwest catering to all levels of riders. Cost: $15 adults; $8 kids. Info: or 208-806-1311.

(September 11) Kidical Mass Bike Ride. When:

RUNNING (October 4) Three Stone Foundation Fun Run. When: 10 .a.m. – Noon. Where: Manito Park Duck Pond. Dress as your favorite book character for a 5K or 1 mile fun run at Manito Park. Cost: $25. Info: or 509-448-9358.

(October 5) Peach Fun Run. When: 8 – 11 a.m. Where: 3025 E Spangle Waverly Road, Spangle, Wash. This 10K, 5K, and 1K fun run is in memory of Olin J. Peach, history teacher at Upper Columbia Academy for 38 years. USTFA certified course. Cost: $15. Info: or 509-939-1716.

5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Where: South Perry Neighborhood, Spokane. Kids and their families are invited to Kidical Mass, a fun, safe bike ride especially for kids. Ride through the South Perry neighborhood, and start the fun in the parking lot in front of Two Wheel Transit Bike Shop. Cost: Free. Info: www.

(October 25) State Park Series #6 Halloween at Hell’s Gate. Where: Lewiston, Idaho. 13.1M

(September 13 & 14) Bike MS: Cycle the Silver Valley. Where: Silver Mountain Resort. Bike MS

When: 8 .a.m. Where: Winthrop, Wash. Train hard, and then use it to run/hike up a really big hill! The esteemed Driveway Butte Hill Climb is a classic Methow event, traditionally capping off a full summer and fall of activity. Run/hike up to the finish, then mosey on down for food, awards and merriment. Info: www.methowendurance. com/driveway-butte-hill-climb.

features 20- to 100-mile route options for all levels along with a festival atmosphere, great food, music, a beer garden and a Saturday evening rally. Funds support research, programs and services for nearly 15,000 people living with multiple sclerosis across the Northwest. Info:

(September 14) RIM Ride. When: 6:30 a.m. – 2

p.m. Where: Liberty Lake. This is a bike ride with 5, 15, 25, 50 and 100 mile courses that start and finish at the Meadowwood Technology Campus in Liberty Lake, WA. Registration deadline is Sept 1, 2014. Cost: $15-$55. Info: or 509-869-9624.

(September 15-20) WACANID (Washington, Canada, Idaho) Ride 2014. The WaCanId is an

annual bicycle tour taking cyclists on paved roads encircling the Selkirk Mountains of Washington, Canada and Idaho. The 6-day event covers 350 miles/560 kilometers. Remember that all participants will need a valid, current passport or enhanced drivers license to cross the international border. Cost: $495. Info: or 208255-6227.

(September 20) Ovando Gran Fondo. When: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Ovando, Mont. An epic offroad ride for the Missoula Symphony. Bring your cross or mountain bike for this fully supported, 57-mile ride. Info: (September 20) Blazing Saddles Bike Ride. When:

7 a.m. – 11 p.m. Where: Northeast Washington Fairgrounds in Colville, Wash. Sponsored by the Rotary Club of Colville, Blazing Saddles is a fully supported ride with rest and food stops as well as mechanical and medical sweeps throughout the course. All routes finish at Blazing Spoons, the Chili Cook-off, at the NE Washington Fairgrounds in Colville. Cost: $60. Info: or 509563-2230.


Out There Monthly / september 2014

trail run, 5M trail run. Hells Gate lies on river bottom left over from the great ice age floods about 15,000 years ago. Cost: $25-$45. Info: www.

(October 25) Driveway Butte Hill Climb.

(November 27) Turkey on the Run 12K, 5K and Kids Race. When: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Where: Rotary Park, Wenatchee, Wash. Turkey on the Run is a great way to kick off your holiday season with a fun and fit jaunt in Wenatchee. Info: www. or 509-387-0051.

(December 6) Jingle Bell Run/Walk. Where:

Riverfront Park. Wear a holiday themed costume. Tie jingle bells to your shoelaces. Raise funds to help find a cure for arthritis, the nation’s leading cause of disability. Run or walk a 5K route with your team members and celebrate the season by giving. Info: www.spokanejinglebellrun.kintera. org or 509-315-5862.

MARATHONS (October 04) Colbert Autumn Classic Half Marathon. Where: Colbert Elementary School

Colbert, Wash. This is a half-marathon. The course is hilly on gravel and paved roads. Aid stations are at 5 and 9 miles. Cost: $15-$35. Info:

shore. Float along a lakeside roadway that boasts 26.2 miles of running euphoria. Cost: $25-$75. Info:

BIKING (October 04) Tour De Rock. Where: 49 Degrees North, Chewelah, Wash. Choose from at least three rides, including a fun mountain bike ride at resort or challenging climb starting in Chewelah and gaining 4,000 feet of elevation on a variety of surfaces. Benefits 49 Degrees North Winter Sports Foundation. Info:

DUATHLONS (October 4) Ellensburg Manastash Metric. When: 7:30 – 9 a.m. Where: Ellensburg, Wash. Travel the scenic west side of the valley to Cle Elum and return along the winding Yakima River, or turn off half-way for the alternate 50K ride. Snacks and sag wagon are provided. Free BBQ at the end of the ride for participants. Cost: $40. Info:

Wintersports (October 25-26) Mt Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap. Where: Spokane Interstate Fairgrounds.

The 50th Annual Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap is the region’s largest winter sports equipment and clothing event featuring thousands of new and used winter sports items being sold by both individuals and area sports stores. Equipment, clothing and accessories for all winter sports are available, including Nordic and alpine skiing and snowboarding. Info: events/event/11.

(January 23-25) Methow Valley Nordic Festival. Where: Winthrop, Wash. A three-day

weekend dedicated to celebrating Nordic skiing in the Methow Valley. Bring your family and friends out for a day of free skiing and festivities on Friday, and then join in a race, fun relay team event or ski tour on Saturday and/or Sunday. For the avid skier, join the 2-day challenge of our signature American Marathon Series race, the Methow Valley Pursuit. Info: events/calendar-events/methow-valley-pursuit.

OTHER (October 2-5) Women’s Yoga and Running Retreat. Where: Mazzma, Wash. A weekend at

North Cascades Basecamp featuring guided trail runs, injury prevention/strength session, daily yoga practice and nutrition discussion. Cost: $295-$450. Info: womens-running-and-yoga-retreat-fall.

(October 18) Hayden Lake Marathon. Where:

Hayden Lake, Idaho. Set yourself free with the world’s most perfect marathon-distance lake-

(September 20) Dirt Diggler Downhill Race. When: 8 a.m. - 9 p.m. Where: Downtown Fernie, B.C. The 9th Annual Fall Classic race rides along the Morrisey Ridge into town. Info: tourismfernie. com/events.

(September 27) Coeur d’Fondo. When: 8 a.m.

Where: Coeur d’Alene. Chose from a variety of distances, all touring around beautiful Lake Coeur d’Alene. “Centro” and “Piccolo” participants will be shuttled by boat across the lake. Info:

(September 27) Rotary Rivers & Ridges. Where: Clarkson, Wash. Choose from 100- Mile Century, 50-Mile Ride or 15-mile Ride. The ride is part of Riverfest, with a Spaghetti Feed and Artwalk the night before. Info: or 208305-7646. (Tuesday Nights) 2014 Cooper Jones Memorial Twilight Series. When: 6 – 8:30 p.m. Bicycle races held on different venues in and around the Spokane and Coeur d’Alene area. Courses include criteriums, circuits, and road races. Info:

(Wednesday Nights) Wednesday Bike, Brew, and BBQ Mountain Bike Group Rides. When:

5:45 p.m. Where: Terra Sports 510 E Sherman Ave, Coeur d’Alene. 100% no drop, beginner to expert. Meet at Terra Sports at 5:45, or Nettleton Gulch Trailhead at 6:15. Every Wednesday. Cost: Free. Info: or 208-765-5446.

HIKING / WALKING (On-Going) Wed & Sun Hobnailer Hikes. When:

Varies. Where: Varies. Join Hobnailer hiking club for weekly 6-8 mile hikes in the Spokane area. Info: or 509-456-0250.

(September 6) North Idaho: Chimney Rock Hike. When: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Sandpoint, Idaho. 13 miles round trip. Starting elevation is 4020 ft and summit elevation is 6970 ft for an approximate elevation gain of 2950 feet. Cost: Free. Info: www. or 208-265-9565.

(September 12) North Idaho: Big Fisher Lake Hike. When: 7:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Sandpoint, Idaho. 10.5 miles round trip. Starting elevation is 6,320 ft and highest elevation is 7,390 ft, for approximately 1070 feet of elevation gain. Cost: Free. Info: or. 208-265-9565.

(September 14) North Idaho: Harrison to Beehive Scramble. When: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Sandpoint,

Idaho. 10 miles round trip. . 1,400-ft total elevation gain. Cost: Free. Info: or 208-265-9565.

RUNNING (September 6) Lake Chelan Shore to Shore Marathon, Half-Marathon, 10K. When: 7 a.m. - 1 p.m. Where: Manson Bay Park, Manson, Wash. The course is almost entirely adjacent to Lake Chelan. Runners also will traverse through the quaint down-

Have an Event You Would Like to List? // Please visit and click “Add Event” under the “Outdoor Calendar” tab to get your events listed online and considered for the monthly print magazine calendar. To be considered for the print calendar, events MUST be entered by the 20th of the month to be listed in the following month’s issue. Please follow the instructions for submitting an event using the web form.

OutdoorCalendar (September 07) Sundae Sunday 10 Miler. Where: Dwight Merkel Sports Complex, Spokane. Scenic route through Riverside State Park. Race begins and ends near the picnic shelter at the Merkel Sports Complex. Chip timing by atltiming. Cost: $15-$27. Info: running/distance-running-races/sundae-sunday10-miler-2014.

(September 6) Lookout Lake Trail Race. When:

6 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Where: Lionhead State Park, Priest Lake, Idaho. 50K, 25K and 5 mile trail race. Camping on site! Cost: $35-$75. Info: www. or 208946-9543.

(September 13) The Riggins “Salmon Run”. Where: Riggins City Park, Riggins, Idaho. This is a family friendly event offering multiple distances including a kids fun run for ages 3-6. Enjoy live music, food and drinks. Cost: $5 kid/ $20 5K/ $30 10K/ $40 half marathon. Info:

(September 13) Heart & Stroke Walk/5K Run.

gear, 5K run, finishers t-shirt and tickets to the after party. Cost: $34. Info: or 208-806-1311.

Centennial Event will be held rain or shine, no refunds. Cost: $50-$100. Info: boatbikeruntriathlon.html or 509-922-3299.

(September 21) Round About 5K. When: 9 a.m.


– Noon. Where: Deer Park Physical Therapy & Fitness Center, Deer Park, Wash. The Round “About 5k” is an enjoyable scenic run/walk weaving and winding through the streets of Deer Park, including two roundabouts. The proceeds from the Round “About 5k” benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). Cost: $18. Info: www.roundabout5k. com or 509-590-4187.

(September 21) Scenic Half Marathon. When: 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Where: Sandpoint City Beach, 58 Bridge Street. The participants can compete in a 13-mile, half marathon distance, 10K or 5K. Cost: $20-$50. Info: or 208-263-2161. (September 27) Priest Lake Marathon. Where:

Priest Lake, Idaho. Full and Half-Marathon, 50k - 25k - 5k. An off-pavement running adventure through the Panhandle National Forest. Cost: $30$89. Info: or 208-946-9543.

When: 9 a.m. – Noon. Where: Riverfront Park, Spokane. The Heart & Stroke Walk/5K Run is a family-fun event at Riverfront Park honoring cardiac and stroke survivors and celebrating those who are making healthy lifestyle changes. Cost: $25. Info: or 509-536-1500.

(September 20) Newport Autumn Bloom. When: 9 a.m. Where: Newport. 5K/10K Fun Run benefiting the Newport Hospital & Health Services Foundation. A premier racing event, Autumn Bloom’s 10K officially qualified 5 runners for the highly competitive second seed for Bloomsday. Info: NewportAutumnBloom5k10kFunRun.aspx.

South Centennial Trail Head Spokane Valley, Wash. The Valleyfest Annual Run for a Cause will benefit Down Syndrome education, research, and advocacy groups. There is a timed 5K and 10K run, as well as a dash for kids and a walk that travels west so runners and walkers do not cross paths. Cost: $20. Info: or 509-922-3299.

(September 20) River Run. When: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Where: Pybus Public Market, Wenatchee. River Run Half-Marathon, 10K and 5K. The runs take place on paved trails along the Columbia River, Info: www. or 509-387-0051.

(September 20) Glow in the Park. When: 6 – 11 p.m. Where: Spokane Convention Center. Glow in the Park is a 5K fun run in Downtown Spokane. Race entries include pre-party admission, glow

(September 6) Tears and Gears Mountain Duathlon. When: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Where: Fernie, B.C. The Tears & Gears Mountain Duathlon was designed to test the abilities, determination and strength of participants, while also celebrating the amazing terrain and trails available in Fernie. Info:

WATERSPORTS (Ongoing) Stand Up Paddle Board Classes. When: 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Saturdays. Multiple locations. Info: or 509-487-7815.

– 5 p.m. Where: Sandpoint, Idaho. Priest Lake is linked to Upper Priest Lake by a narrow, 2-1/2 mile long waterway termed the Thorofare. Kayakers must provide their own kayaks and life vests. Cost: Free. Info: or 208-2659565.

OTHER (September 27) 4th Annual Wild Moose Chase Trail Run. When: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Where: Mount

Spokane. Three different courses, 5K/10K/25K, starting and finishing at the Selkirk Lodge offer runners of all skill levels. Cost: $10-$35. Info: www. or 907-317-1215.

(September 27) Happy Girls Run Half Marathon. When: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Riverside State ParkBowl and Pitcher, Spokane. The Happy Girl race courses are recognized by both first-time racers and seasoned runners alike as being inspiring and fun. Cost: $85. Info: or 541-323-0964.

TRIATHLONS (September 6) Rathdrum Adventure Race & Heritage Festival. When: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Where:

Rathdrum, Idaho. Bike 22 miles - kayak 5.5 miles and run 6 miles. The premier “alternative” triathlon in North Idaho. Experience a mountain bike ride on Rathdrum Mountain or along a treed path, paddle Twin Lakes in a kayak, and then run the trails back to Rathdrum’s City Park. Cost: $40-$150. Info: or 208-687-2866.

(September 21) Valleyfest’s Boat/Bike/Run Triathlon. When: 8 a.m. – noon. Where: Mirabeau

South Centennial trailhead, Spokane Valley, Wash. 15.5-mile course starts at the Mirabeau Park South

(August 30-September 1) Fall Fest. Where: Schweitzer Mountain Resort, Idaho. Schweitzer is hosting the 22nd annual Fall Fest this year! 8 bands, regional wines, hard ciders and over 60 regional micro beers on tap. Arts, crafts and food vendors throughout the village and live music playing all three days. Souvenir mugs, glasses and steins will be on sale all weekend as well as several other Fall Fest souvenirs. Info: (September 12-14) Kootenay Spirit Festival. Where: Nelson, BC. Kootenay Spirit Festival is a celebration of yoga, dance, meditation and music held in the natural beauty of Nelson, BC, aspiring to ignite and unite community within this region and beyond. Walking and cycling between events is encouraged. Nelson provides an ideal location to celebrate mindful-living, love of nature and engaged community. Cost: $85-$168. Info: www. or

(September 27) Washington State Parks “Free” Day. When: 6 a.m. – 8 p.m. In honor of the National Parks Service birthday, today is a “free day” and the Discover Pass is not required to visit a state park. A Discover Pass is still required to access lands managed by the Washington state departments of Natural Resources and Fish & Wildlife. Cost: Free. Info:


(September 20) Valleyfest 5K/10K Run for a Cause. When: 8 a.m. Where: Mirabeau Point Park

Trailhead Shelter, Sun Mountain Lodge, Winthrop, Wash. Methow Valley Off-Road Duathlon – 40K Mountain bike, 10K Trail run. Cost: $35 solo; $65 team. Info: or 509-699-0568.

(September 7) North Idaho: Thorofare Kayak from Lower to Upper Priest Lake. When: 9 a.m.

(September 13) March for the Fallen. When: 8

a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Spokane. 14.92 K (9.25 mile) march/run/walk to honor all of Washington’s fallen Military. All profits will be donated to local veteran groups. Each participant will receive a t-shirt and a commemorative “dog tag” for the event. Cost: $20$30. Info:

(September 27) Methow Valley Off-Road Duathlon. When: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Where: Chickadee

Sept 2014

towns of Chelan and Manson. Info:

September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


{Uncommon Adventures}

left: Granite slabs are part of the fun on the Newtsac trail. Right: the new trails in the Morning mountan area near nelson have been compared to trails in bend, ore. // Photos: Skye schillhammer

A Pro Rider Returns to Nelson, B.C. to Find New Trails and Old Classics Skye Schillhammer—Professional Mountain Biker Skye Schillhammer is a freelance photographer and professional mountain biker currently based out of Spokane. In 2008, he started riding for Transition Bikes, which kicked off his professional riding career. In his early riding years, he raced downhill and competed in slopestyle events in the U.S. and Canada, picking up sponsors like Gravity Components, Reel Cameras, Northwest Riders Clothing and Bell Helmets along the way. Eventually, traveling to compete as a full-time college student became more of a challenge, and Schillhammer shifted more of his attention toward producing videos that highlight mountain biking’s unique style and flow. (OTM) Once you get into a new sport like mountain biking, you naturally start browsing around for some of the best of what’s out there. You begin dreaming of these amazing trails you see in magazines and videos. In 2003, I was a young rider who had just bought my first serious mountain bike, and I was dying to go ride one of those legendary places. Along with Whistler, Vancouver and Squamish, another place that was always on that list was Nelson, B.C. Sooner or later, it had to happen. My dad and I packed up the truck and headed out on a weeklong road trip through interior British Columbia, with Nelson as our primary destination. With the beautiful waters of Kootenai Lake bordered by steep Selkirk Mountain hillsides, Nelson is simply breathtaking. During our two days there, we quickly learned one thing about the trails too; they’re steep. At the time Nelson had two main riding areas: Mountain Station and the North Shore. Mountain Station is accessed right from town and offers quick, ripping trails that can be finished up at a café or pub. These trails feature wooden stunts as well as steep, technical singletrack. Nelson’s other riding area, the North Shore, is north of town along the western shore of Kootenai Lake. The North Shore trail system starts just across the highway from the Kokanee Creek Campground and includes some of the area’s most iconic trails. Here you’re in store for grueling climbs with long singletrack descents. There are many different types of trails to choose from: smooth and less steep; fast, and white-knuckle; or rocky and technical. My dad and I chose to ride Newtsac, which offers a classic Nelson descent that begins in steep forest and leads into large granite slabs with various stunts mixed in. The trails here on the North Shore are

vastly different from anything in the Spokane area. The steep grade and mixture of rock slabs, roots and off-camber descents challenged my bike handling abilities and re-stoked the fearless mountain biker I was when I first started riding. It was too many years before I made the trip north again. But this summer, my friend Cameron and I finally hit the road to meet up with another friend and Nelson local for some early August shredding on old, familiar trails and a bit of exploring the new riding area right out of town called Morning Mountain. The less technical, flowy trails on Morning Mountain offer riding that’s atypical to the Nelson area. With the august temperatures reaching the upper nineties, we were up and riding these new trails with the sunrise. We started the day in golden morning light filtered through birch trees as we rode the smooth up-trail that takes off from the trailhead, gently winding its way up the mountain. On our first lap, we rode the intermediate trail Lefty. We picked up speed down the smooth, flowy trail that included tall berms and tabletop jumps. We hooted and hollered our way down, laughing at how much fun we were having, and I couldn’t help but dwell on how different this trail was from the classic Nelson downhill trails the town is known for. For our second lap, we toned it down a bit and rode the intermediate cross country trail back to the bottom. The Morning Mountain trail system exemplifies the new age of riding where trails are being built to provide a smoother and less steep and punishing experience that’s possible for a wider range of riders to enjoy. The construction and difficulty of the Morning Mountain trails reminded me of the riding at Beacon Hill in Spokane and Galbraith Mountain in Bellingham. Morning Mountain is the perfect spot to get a few quick laps in when you don’t have the time or energy for an epic adventure. You can easily do a couple runs in an hour or two and be back to town. It’s also attracting more riders looking for an alternative to Nelson’s more technical, downhill oriented trails. After checking out Morning Mountain, we retreated from the afternoon heat for a dip in Kootenai Lake to cool off before making one last lap for old times’ sake. As the sun was getting low, we made our way up the North Shore slopes above the sprawling lake. With just enough time to get back to the car before dark, we dropped into Newtsac. Those early days of riding came rushing back with the memory of that trail. I pushed away the thought of crashing, let off the brakes and blasted down our final run of the trip. I didn’t need a drop of coffee to keep me wired on the drive home. Nelson is something out of a mountain biker’s dream that just keeps getting better. // (Skye Schillhammer)

Riding Morning Mountain The Morning Mountain trails offer easily accessible, quick laps for all levels of riders. To find the trailhead, head west out of Nelson on Highway 3a, look for Granite Road on your left and follow it until you see a gravel road to the left with a sign for Morning Mountain. Follow the road and after a few switchbacks the parking lot will be on your left. There’s a covered picnic area along with a kiosk that has a trail map. The whole area is relatively small, so don’t be afraid to adventure and check out all the trails. There is a mixture of older, rougher singletrack along with the new, more smooth and flowy machine-built trails. Stop by The Sacred Ride bike shop in Nelson for more information or guidance on any of the trail systems in the area. They sell an excellent trail guide for the area, although the Morning Mountain area is so new that it’s not included in the latest edition. 22

Out There Monthly / september 2014

>> A paddling guidebook author, Pro mountain bike rider & mountain runner show us the way.

Photos Left to Right: Views that distract from the miles. // Despite signs, maps, and GPS, they manage to get lost. // Christi, the only woman tougher than her compression shorts. photos: Christi and Ammi.

Running the Wonderland Trail: 3 Runners. 3 Days. 1 Crazy Adventure Ammi Midstokke—Endurance Mountain Runner Ammi Midstokke lives in the forests of North Idaho where she spends much of her time getting lost on well-marked trails or embarking rather unprepared on random misadventures in the outdoors. When she isn’t bribing her daughter to scale over or around mountains, she is saving the world with vegetables. More words from Ammi can be found at or her website, (OTM) I am twelve miles into a 35 mile day, and I haven’t stopped grinning since the first step. We’re running through the fields of Indian Henry’s Hunting Grounds, where the awe-and-amazement factor heavily outweighs the what-have-I-got-myself-into factor. This particular adventure began with questionable idea #281: Run around Mount Rainier’s aptly named Wonderland Trail ad hoc in three days. By “ad hoc” I mean there was about .00065 seconds of rational consideration that focused mainly on whether or not I had enough Band-Aids in stock before deciding to do this. I called my Seattle friend, Christi, to see if she had some beta on the trail. This resulted in her promptly inviting herself because she’s the kind of athlete that can just up and run 93 miles. Christi came up with the genius idea to glamp (glamour camp: identified by luxuries such as pillows) by having a friend drive a car to the destination campground each night. Thus, our party became three with the addition of Rufus, master camp finder and tent pitcher. Endurance mountain runners (or so I might label us) are strange looking people. They wear compression socks and shorts, little gaiters to keep rocks out of burly looking shoes, and then slather enough greasy sunblock on to slip from the grip of even the most determined bears. Incidentally, this is not your ideal hitchhiking outfit, as I later discovered. Christi and I hit the trail at 7 a.m. the first day, and by 7:15 we were lost. We like to start all our adventures this way. Bushwhacking around a bluff adds a Lewis & Clark air of authenticity to any journey. However long your bucket list is, add the Wonderland Trail to it somewhere near the top. It is a delightful expedition across landscapes extraordinaire, through blossoming fields of color, mountainous ridges highlighted with bear grass, clear alpine lakes – all shadowed by the dramatic peaks of Mount Rainier. And a lot of mosquitoes. Which is kind of how you pace yourself. If you’re going slow enough for them to land on you, you’re not going to make camp by nightfall. Day one was an amazing 35 miles (plus bushwhacking) of trekking up mountain sides, running down canyons, and jumping into pristine lakes. And though I couldn’t stop smiling, somewhere along the

way, food lost its allure. When I couldn’t eat dinner post-run, I knew something was amiss. A run like that makes tree bark and road kill seem appetizing. Day two began with denial of a stomach flu and a climb through picturesque Spray Park. It’s like a post card, only you can hear the glaciers cracking. Had I not been preoccupied with my growing desire to vomit, I surely would have shed tears of appreciation. The inability to eat anything was becoming a problem as we approached that Point of No Return. Christi and I stopped to feed the mosquitos and have an intelligent conversation about options. Fact: You cannot run ultra-marathons around mountains without eating. Also, friends do not appreciate interrupting such trips with life flight rescues for sickly cohorts. It is a hard thing to make a bail decision mid-adventure, but in my experience, much can be salvaged by making the right decisions at the right time. Christi would run on while I ran out and hitchhiked to camp. Because hitchhiking through rural Washington in filthy knee-highs makes any adventure legit. Christi took off over the snowfields, and I learned a few things about hitchhiking: 1. People will stop to tell you why they can’t stop to pick you up. Usually it’s because the dog is in the back seat. 2. It is hard to get picked up when you look like a cross between a rodeo clown and a dust bowl hooker. Even if you smile to show a full set of teeth. 3. The most unlikely people will pick you up and treat you like kin. The latter point was proven when a Vietnamese family (of 13) picked me up in their Toyota rental car train. They squished my salt-grit body between Grandma and Grandpa, who spoke no English but nodded approvingly at my presence, kindly cracked the window, and tried to not breathe for twenty miles down the dusty, windy road while I tried not to puke in Grandma’s lap. I’m not current on Vietnamese culture, but I’m guessing tossing your cookies on the family matriarch is frowned upon. Several rides and odd experiences later, I arrived at White River. Christi came in just behind me, as perky as when she started ten hours earlier. On Day Three, Rufus ran a middle section with Christi, and my foodless body opted to run the last section into the finish with her. We ran those final miles toward Longmire with the same girlish chatter and enthusiasm we’d had days ago. There were epic views, swims in mountain lakes, and deep sighs of appreciation for our bodies and the nature they transport us through. We fantasized about carbonated beverages. We declared our misadventure nothing shy of spectacular. For a trip that somehow went wrong, it sure ended up just right: Christi with a complete circumnavigation of Rainier, Rufus learning a thing or two about trail running, and me five pounds lighter. A special thanks to Boxed ( for their incredible meals and to the hundreds of volunteers, employees, and donations that have built and maintained the wonderful Wonderland Trail. // (Ammi Midstokke)

There were epic views, swims in mountain lakes, and deep sighs of appreciation for our bodies and the nature they transport us through.

September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


A River’s Journey: An Epic Paddle Put to Words roskelley selfie Near the mouth of the columbia.

John Roskelley—Mountain Climber, Paddler, Guidebook Author A native of the Northwest, John Roskelley is a legendary mountaineer who has climbed extensively in the Himalayas, including numerous first ascents on the largest peaks in the world. He first started exploring the Columbia River in the mid-1990s. “Paddling and climbing have many similarities,” he says. “The most obvious, of course, is a front row seat to nature’s unlimited marvels.” His latest book, “Paddling The Columbia: A Guide To All 1245 Miles Of Our Scenic And Historical River,” details trips for paddlers along the length of the river from its source in British Columbia to the Pacific Ocean. (Jon Jonckers) “The Columbia River is a thread of life in the Pacific Northwest. A journey down any portion opens another world of nature’s beauty, a history of man’s dependence on the river, and an exploration of yourself. Do not hesitate – start the adventure.” In the outdoor sports community, John Roskelley is the prime example of a Renaissance man. His expertise in climbing, backpacking, mountaineering and paddling is unmatched. He’s a little more humble now than in his younger years, but, ultimately, he’s still very task-oriented and he’s always ready for the most uncommon adventure possible. In his newest book, Roskelley references a point back in 1993 where he thought he might travel down the Columbia River in sections with his son, Jess, and his dad, Fenton. Lacking a contemporary guide or contemporary Internet, the Roskelley’s picked April to put-in. The river was virtually at flood stage, very powerful and full of spring-time debris, but the genesis of traveling the entire length was born. Like John Muir returning to Yosemite again and again, Roskelley returned to the Columbia and paddled each leg consecutively. Starting in 2010, he put in where he last took out and coordinated his trips with good weather. He abundantly credits his wife, Joyce, for her support throughout the adventure.

By volume, the Columbia is the fourth-largest river in the United States. The headwaters begin at 2,960 feet above sea level. The river drains an area of about 258,000 square miles; the total area is similar to the size of France. The river has been paddled by canoe and sea kayak many times, and in 2003, Christopher Swain of Portland, Oregon, became the first person to swim the full length to raise awareness about the river’s environmental health. Roskelley wasn’t seeking out a particular cause, but he readily admits that he longed to see more of the iconic river than he could see from the car. Most of us cross the river at a few key points, and maybe we can list a few of the 14 dams, but intimate knowledge of the river is peripheral. There’s a kaleidoscope of logistics involved with undertaking a paddling trip of this magnitude. The maps aren’t entirely accurate, the largest eddies aren’t clearly marked, and the rattlesnakes are never friendly. For the most part, Roskelley paddled alone for the biggest chunks. His daughter, Jordan, joined him for a section in Canada, and he partnered with friends for many of the more technical sections. The final book is a guide first and a record of his journey second. In 288 pages, he breaks the river down into 35 manageable portions, pinpointing the imperative parts necessary to complete each section. He also includes some clever Roskelley wit: “Common sense should be on every paddler’s list of essentials and must never be left on the shelf at home or tucked away in a watertight compartment.” Paddling means so many different things to so many different people, and Roskelley encountered just about everything during this multi-year adventure. When asked about the trials with weather or exhaustion or wildlife, he quickly converts the conversation to the beauty and awe of the river. Without question, the river is an economic artery for the entire Northwest, but now that he has seen each twist and turn first hand, he appreciates other aspects even more. The philosopher, Heraclitus of Ephesus, once wrote: “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.” Admittedly, taking on the whole Columbia is not for everyone. But just about anyone can sample a few sections, see something new and maybe learn a few things about the river and themselves. // (Jon Jonckers)

There’s a kaleidoscope of logistics involved with undertaking a paddling trip of this magnitude. The maps aren’t entirely accurate, the largest eddies aren’t clearly marked, and the rattlesnakes are never friendly.

Paddling The Columbia: A Guide To All 1245 Miles Of Our Scenic And Historical River John Roskelley, Mountaineers Books, 2014 (288 pages). From the first page to the last, John Roskelley records a vision of the Columbia River that’s both informative and entertaining. “Paddling the Columbia” is a complete guide to the entire length of the Columbia River, including put-ins, rapids, campsites, dams and points of interest. The maps alone are worth the price of the book, but it’s the sidebars that really enhance this guide. The book pinpoints the necessary logistics for paddling the 1,200 plus miles. Roskelley cites the flow and appropriate seasons for each section, as well as the nearby services that are necessary for some of the more remote regions. He breaks down the river into 35 manageable chunks and delivers appropriate and witty advice. For example, in the Hazards Section for paddling south of the Keenleyside Dam he writes, “…eddies; bridge-pilings; rapids; large rock islands; American Homeland Security.” Rightly so, Roskelley cites the early pioneers and explorers of the river and reflects on what has and hasn’t changed since the river was “industrialized.” He also shines a light on the pollution and other man-made problems facing the river, especially where it meets the Pacific. Ultimately, this is one of the best and arguably most significant paddling guides in the Northwest. This book is a treasure for anyone who wants to paddle the Columbia for a few miles or the full length. // Jon Jonckers 24

Out There Monthly / september 2014

Skiing Summer Skiing on Washington’s Volcanoes // By Peter G. Williams

smiling through st. helens slush for some turns from the top. // Photo: natalie countiss

Washington’s volcanoes offer a wide variety of ski mountaineering options, from expert death defying descents to leisurely ski descents for the intermediate skier. Two mountains in particular offer fun ski descents that are reasonable and accessible: Mount Adams and Mount St. Helens. Mount Adams, located in the Cascade Range 75 miles northeast of Portland, is the third highest of the Cascade volcanoes and the second highest mountain in Washington State (sitting at 12,276 feet above sea level). The summit of Adams is centrally located along the main north-south axis of the giant massif. Five glaciers drop off from the summit dome: the Klickitat, White Salmon, Wilson, Lyman, and Adams.

ridge. At approximately 9,700 feet the route steepens, and crampons and an ice axe are often needed. Follow the ridge up snow or talus slopes to the false summit. Cross the divide to access the true summit, approximately 600 feet higher in elevation. The entire climb from car to summit can be done in five to eight hours. The easiest Washington State volcano ski descent is also located on the most famous active volcano in the continental United States: Mount St. Helens. With an elevation of 8,365 feet, it is located in the Cascade Range 50 miles northeast of Portland. The best time for a ski descent on Mount St. Helens is spring to early summer. Early in the season plan on using alpine touring or tele skis

The easiest Washington State volcano ski descent is also located on the most famous active volcano in the continental United States: Mount St. Helens. The standard South Spur route can be climbed well into fall, with September usually offering good ski descent conditions. One can ski the South Spur directly from the summit, although the skiing is a little steeper and more interesting from the false summit at 11,700 feet. An even more interesting descent from the false summit drops into the Southwest Chutes. Expert skiers can choose the North Face of the Northwest Ridge. The standard South Spur route is accessed from Cold Springs Campground. From there hike on trail #183 up an old road trace which eventually emerges as a trail on the left skyline ridge after approximately 1.5 miles. The ridge trail will take you to a large flat area at approximately 9,000 feet, known affectionately as Lunch Counter. Although Adams can easily be climbed in a day, Lunch Counter is a common camping location. From Lunch Counter continue up the south

and skins, while later in the season the ascent becomes an easy climb on steep pumice slopes. Climbing is limited to the south side by the U.S. Forest Service. Trailheads for an ascent vary by season, as State Highway 503 is open year round, while Forest Roads 83, 81, and 90 are usually open from Memorial Day until snow blocks the road. You have the option to camp at the Climbers Bivouac Trailhead, or at Climbers Bivouac via the Ptarmigan Trail. From there, it is a relatively easy ascent along Monitor Ridge. The ski descent is a mellow, enjoyable jaunt back down the south side. When You Go: Information concerning Wilderness Permits and Cascades Volcano Passes are available at The distance from Spokane to Mount Adams is 330 miles; it’s 360 miles to Mount St. Helens. Weather on the volcanoes can change rapidly. Sudden snowstorms can occur above 6,000 feet any month of the year. // September 2014

/ Out There Monthly



Come See Us!

Every Saturday and Wednesday

Spokane Riverkeeper

Working for a Fishable, Swimable River // By Derrick Knowles

Through October calf deep in the spokane, casting for redbands. // Photos: Derrick Knowles

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Out There Monthly / september 2014

rainbow color and the splash of wild fish bending one rod, then another, I caught myself wishing I had paid more attention to all that redband talk over the years. I’ve reeled in plenty of fish in my life, plunking bait and casting spinners in lakes and rivers, but this was my first time out with a fly rod. I have to admit it wasn’t pretty, but I didn’t want to stop either. I couldn’t get my line back in the water fast enough after each attempted drift. White stood there in calf-deep current, only fishing half the time, watching the water and talking about fishing and the health of the river. Apparently, many seasoned anglers get the same charge out of just being in the water close to fish. With caddisflies from the evening’s hatch crawling up our legs, White talked about ways in which the river has changed between pauses to point out a heron or comment on osprey circling overhead. Fewer native fish, especially in the upper river where bass have taken over a once abundant trout fishery, is a serious concern – it’s one that White and others hope won’t spread to the colder, aquifer-fed waters of the lower Spokane. But there is progress being made on other fronts. Pollution and wastewater discharge that has held the Spokane back from meeting its Clean Water Act mandates in the past is slowly being reigned in thanks in large part to the work of river advocates putting pressure on regulators and polluters. But White also notes that there seems to be a more collaborative spirit amongst all the different players at the table, from river advocates and regulatory agencies to the city and businesses that have used the river as a place to discharge wastewater for years. “It feels like more and more of the people involved want to do the right thing,” he says. White credits that shift to increased public awareness of just how important the Spokane River is to the region’s quality of life and our evolving economy – one that rightfully puts top value on a beautiful urban river that you can safely fish and swim in. Anyone who would fight against that needs to go fishing with White. Learn more about the Spokane Riverkeeper at //


Purchase tickets at


I run and ride my bike along the Spokane River often, and I float and swim in it as many times as I can each summer. Yet, I must admit, it’s a rare day when I slow down enough and take the time to really think about that ribbon of water that snakes through our city. Fortunately, I got that chance to spend some quality time with the river one beautiful August evening. OTM writer Brad Naccarato and I were whipping our fly rods around, dodging ponderosa pines and willow, as we followed Jerry White, the new Spokane Riverkeeper, through the woods toward the water. I’m pretty up to speed on most regional conservation issues, but, sadly, I knew far too little about the Spokane Riverkeeper and aimed to change that while we fished. It’s pretty straight forward stuff, as White explained. “Our mission is for a fishable and swimmable Spokane River. We are basically the river’s guardians, keeping an eye on things to make sure the rules meant to protect it are being followed and that the health of the watershed improves,” he says. White, an avid Spokane River angler and boater who lives close enough to the river to have hatches of river bugs buzzing around his yard, is the perfect person for the job. On any given day, he could be talking with a civic organization or business group, testifying at a public meeting on behalf of the river, or floating or splashing around in the Spokane or one of its tributaries, engaging people like us who use and love the river. As we waded out into the late August shallows of one of the wilder-feeling spots downstream from the city, the talk turned to fishing, a pastime that White passionately believes is one of the best ways to cultivate a sense of place and to connect with a river in a very personal way. We were casting for native redbands, a subspecies of rainbow trout that I’m told have held on in these waters since the last ice age. I have heard anglers and biologists muttering about the plight of the river’s redbands for years, but it never really sunk in. Another one of many species in peril, sad but somehow still an underwater abstraction. That night, wading around mid-stream, scanning the smooth spots on the otherwise turbulent surface and finally watching the flash of light and

Drink Good Coffee and Beer to Support the Riverkeeper

Looking after the Spokane River isn’t just the work of anglers, boaters, and river advocates anymore. Now you can enjoy a cup of local Doma Coffee or a pint of beer from River City Brewing and support the Spokane Riverkeeper each time you do. Doma donates $1 for every 12-ounce can or bulk pound of their “GOOD COFFEE” coffee blend that was developed in partnership with Spokane Riverkeeper to support their programs. River City Brewing brews a specialty Riverkeeper IPA, which supports the Spokane Riverkeeper with each keg sold. Order up at pint at the River City taproom at 121 South Cedar Street downtown Spokane.

RoadTrip Methow Valley Road Trip

Eat, Drink, Explore, Sleep, Repeat // By S. Michal Bennett My husband Young and I moved to North Idaho from Colorado six years ago, and sometimes I find myself missing that Rocky Mountain purple mountain majesty. But this summer, I discovered a place in North Central Washington that satisfied that longing: the Methow Valley. On a sunny day in June, Young and I set out to explore Twisp, Winthrop, Mazama and the surrounding areas. After a peaceful drive alongside the Columbia River, crossing the dam in Brewster and meandering through seemingly endless apple, cherry and fruit groves, we arrived late in the afternoon in Twisp at the southern end of the Methow (pronounced “MĔT-hŏw”) Valley. The cheerful, narrow Methow River runs down the valley and right through downtown, and its music compliments the mountain charm and quiet lifestyle. For dinner, we chose the highly-recommended Tappi, a modest Italian restaurant on Glover, Twisp’s “main street.” The daily specials looked appetizing, but we decided to follow a friend’s endorsement and order what we were told Tappi does best: house wine, cuscio (pillow bread) with chevre, garlic parmigiano polenta with an egg, and The Bianca brick oven pizza. When we had cleaned the last delicious morsels from our plates, I had to admit that John, the owner and chef, had crafted one of the most perfect meals I had ever experienced. With satisfied palates and full stomachs, we got back on the road and headed for our night’s lodging at North Cascades Basecamp in Mazama. The Basecamp was an enchanting surprise! We were greeted with a white board note from our hosts, Steve and Kim Bondi, who had gone into town, indicating which room we were in and instructing us to make ourselves at home in the main lodge. The clean, comfortable and affordable “European-style lodging” reminded us of a combined home and hostel, in every good way: private lodge rooms, spacious shared bathrooms, cozy community rooms, and free Wi-Fi. There were a few other guests that night, but everyone, upstairs and down, was quiet and respectful. North Cascades Basecamp was built in 1980, but was snatched up by biologists Steve and Kim in 2010. With their kids Amelia (10) and Emmet


top: Steve and Kim at North Cascades basecamp - a haven for nature lovers. Bottom: Room at the twisp river suites. // Photos: S. Michal Bennett

(6), they have carved out an incredible space, complete with a garden, chickens, trail connection to the Methow Valley’s extensive trail system, warming hut, outdoor education and nature programs, art camps and more. The Basecamp is stop #40 on Washington’s Audubon Cascade birding loop as well as a National Wildlife Federation certified Backyard Wildlife Sanctuary, so early the next morning, Steve took us and a local bird watcher named DJ on a birding walk. From wetlands to a cedar grove to a sometimes beaver pond, the 21 acres were rife with nature’s song as the sun came up. We followed the easy, winding Atlas Snowshoe Trail listening for bird calls and were fascinated with Steve and DJ’s knowledge of plants, birds and terrain. Breakfast back in the lodge’s community dining room was Kim’s simply scrumptious frittata, made with her own eggs and greens and complimented with local fruit and goat cheese. As we checked out, the morning also revealed the incredible mountain scenery that surrounded us – dense forests and towering peaks. Before heading back down the valley, we stopped at The Mazama Store, a hidden foodie delight and a prodigious source of quality supplies for campers, travellers and locals. We also discovered Goat’s Beard Mountain Supplies, a little outfitting shop just behind the store with just the right amount of gear, friendly local service and direct access to surrounding trails. There are over 300 miles of maintained backcountry trails accessible from the Methow Valley and surrounding national forest land. Winthrop, a rustic Western-themed town located directly between Twisp and Mazama, boasts over 100

miles of those trails and is popular with crosscountry skiers in the winter. This was our second pause of the day. We “tied up” our car on Main Street and had a snack and a pint at the Old Schoolhouse Brewery overlooking the finishline of the Winthrop Marathon. After another refreshing stop at the Methow Valley Ciderhouse, just outside of Winthrop, we finally returned to Twisp and checked in to the Twisp River Suites overlooking the Methow River. A somewhat recent addition to Twisp, this deluxe inn more than accomodates pets: doggie doors with private courtyards, pet beds, paw-marked trails, an outdoor animal shower, leash hooks. Yet there is not one “animal” smell in the entire place. Owner Joe Marver has spared no expense to make each guest comfortable, whether you have two or four paws. A Forbidden Rice Bowl and Edamame at the Glover Street Market was followed by an afternoon of exploring the creativity and art at the impressive TwispWorks cultural center. We finished off our day with a couple brews at the Twisp River Pub (I suggest sitting at the bar for the quality service) and some fine Mexican food at La Fonda Lopez. We then sank into the most comfortable bed of our lives and slept soundly until our alarms woke us. Sunday started with an excellent cup of local Blue Star coffee and some local advice: next time you’re in Twisp, camp out at the affordable, pristine Riverbend RV Park and take in the amenities (showers, steam room, laundry) at The Washworks. I guess this fall, we’ll be packing our tent and hiking shoes, and exploring the rest of what this majestic place has to offer. //

Fall Events in the Methow Hawk Watching at Chelan Ridge

September 20-21, Chelan Ridge Hawk Watch Station.

Methow Valley Off-Road Duathlon

Challenging 40K MTB and 10K Trail run September 27, Chickadee Trailhead, Methow Valley.

Methow Conservancy’s Annual Cider Squeeze September 27,

Women’s Running and Yoga Retreat

October 2-5, North Cascades Basecamp, Mazama.





September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


Climbing McLellan’s Middle Finger of Fury // Jon Jonckers On the steep overhanging side of the Half Dome Boulder, there are a few strange veins in the granite rock that come together at a singular point. Unless someone points it out, it can be tough to see. But not unlike a piece of chaotic modern art, if you stare at it long enough, you can begin to see what Arden Pete sees. To him, the streaks in the granite look like an alien hand with extra long fingers. Others see a distorted pitchfork. If you climb up the center finger directly to the highest point of the boulder, then you’ve climbed the Middle Finger of Fury. No one has ever suggested that this is the most difficult or most technical boulder problem at McLellan; however, it does have a reputation as being one of the boldest climbs for the grade. The Half Dome boulder is a block about the size of a Sherman tank, and it rests on a shelf apart from the other walls at one end of the tiny canyon at McLellan – not unlike that other Half Dome. Local climber George Hughbanks is among the most active boulderers in the area, and he spends a lot of time at McLellan. “When driving someone new to the area, my voice can become hoarse describing this climbing treasure,” says Hughbanks. While McLellan is a part of Riverside State Park, this isolated gem is far from the park’s steady traffic. “The most noise you will hear is the echoes of boaters and swimmers from Long Lake. The maze of cliffs and boulders often leave

new visitors lost in wonderment. For the climbers of Spokane, McLellan is a brilliant resource with mounds and mounds of boulders to wrestle.” In the climbing world, bouldering lines that ascend a boulder or short cliff are called “problems,” and they are generally assigned a technical grade on the V-scale. Originally devised by John “Vermin” Sherman in the 1990s, the V system currently covers a range of V0 to V16. Problems are rated solely on the physical challenge involved, and do not measure reach or height or bad landings. In loose terms, V0 translates into a boulder problem with a climbing rating of 5.10. It might be three moves or ten moves, but the toughest part is no more difficult than climbing a 5.10 route. Meanwhile, a V4 is similar to a 5.12a. Consensus for the Middle Finger of Fury is V6, or roughly climbing 5.12d without a rope. The McLellan climbing area doesn’t exist on any official maps or printed guidebooks, but you can find references with Google searches. About a decade ago, climbers christened the area McLellan, but Riverside State Parks calls the spot the Fisk Day Use Area. Most people assume the area is named after McLellan Lane or the nearby McLellan Conservation Area, but the climbing area is miles away from both places. Arden Pete loves spending time at McLellan, and bouldering is a natural extension of his climbing and mountaineering abilities. For more than

Arden pete reaching over the middle finger. // Photo: Jon jonckers

Colville Discover Our Good Nature

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Out There Monthly / september 2014

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a decade, he has explored and scrambled and climbed in the area. Strangely enough, his effort to avoid attention and independently develop his skills at McLellan, are the very same reason he is one of the most prolific characters at that spot. He values the peace and solitude. “McLellan is my first choice of local crags. It’s such a great place to be alone. I just love the pure volume of bouldering opportunities and the quality of the rock,” says Pete. Bouldering at McLellan is a departure from other local bouldering spots. For starters, most local climbers’ initial exposure to bouldering is Minnehaha. The stone at McLellan isn’t nearly as sharp, most of the landings are much better, and you don’t have to tolerate the graffiti, broken glass or noise from the police gun range or Felts Field aircraft. McLellan is a great spot to escape and purely focus on climbing. For the record, not every boulder problem has a name, but those ascents that really standout deserve a good title. The name might be an inside joke among the first-ascent party, or it might be related to a feature on the rock. For example, The Middle Finger of Fury isn’t a mean-spirited gesture – it’s the central line from a handprint. Regarding the 69 Year Old Traverse, this boulder problem is a traverse roughly 100 feet from left to right, and the name centers on an incident that genuinely bothered Pete. About six years ago,

he recalls passing the wall a few times and noticing how cool it would be to climb. However, a tree was blocking a portion of it. Weeks passed before Pete walked by the wall again, and he noticed someone had cut down the tree illegally for no apparent reason. This infuriated him because he felt it might threaten access to this beloved area. He was so upset that he sat down next to the stump, and he counted the rings of the ponderosa pine and discovered it was 69 years old. Later on, after a successful traverse of the wall, he named the problem the 69 Year Old Traverse. Meanwhile, the gifted climber Bryan Franklin spent several days finishing an extremely difficult boulder problem, and then he allowed Hughbanks’ young kids to name the route. With very little deliberation or contemplation, they agreed on the name Ferocious Fred (although none of them know anyone named Fred). This route is rated V8 or nearly equivalent to 5.13b/c. At the end of the day, any climber willing to drive a little further and walk a little more can find some awesome climbing at McLellan. The routes are not as obvious as other places, but most climbers agree this is a positive element. Just remember to bring your thickest Asana bouldering pads, and if you’re really good, you can climb the 69 Year Old, Ferocious Fred and a famous Middle Finger of Fury. //

Climbing NEw Climbing in North Idaho // Katie Botkin I’ve never seen a first ascent of anything. But now, I can say I’ve seen a second ascent. More importantly, I can say I’ve nabbed the dubious honor of the first-ever failure of an ascent. “Look, see, it’s easy,” said Winter Braden, scuttling sideways on the sharp edges of the overhanging start using only his arms, demonstrating again for me how he’d just done it. But after repeated attempts, I was not in agreement with him. Locals are dubbing it the Balls Wall, so called because it runs parallel to Ball Creek in Boundary County. So far, there are five routes up, and including me only about eight people know of them. Two 5.10a grade climbs have been named: Un-Ball-Evable, a mostly-gear, bolted-anchor crack, and Balls to the Wall, a mixed-gear slab following a seam up to another set of bolted anchors. Further up the trail, there’s a 5.10d, a 5.11d and a 5.12d (or thereabouts as the discussion is still

ongoing) – all of them climbed but unnamed. Kelsey Brasseur of Sandpoint snagged the first ascent of the 5.10d, and has been ruminating on the name since. She’s thinking it should be With Balls or Beauty, “because you can hoss it or style it,” and suggested that the rating might be closer to 5.11a. The routes were bolted by Aaron Hanson and Kale Semar, who had already spent quite a bit of time cleaning the rocks off, according to Hanson. But it still wasn’t enough to be comfortable, as I discovered attempting With Balls or Beauty – even after cheating to get past the overhang, I slid right off and dangled from my rope, the skin of my knees scraped and bleeding. The slabs were powdered in peeling lichen, the cracks were full of dust, and the general consensus among the locals was the secret of these climbs could be shared in hopes they’d be cleaned through use. There’s potential for further development, with plenty of

Laclede Rocks Gets New Routes and Bolts

In the last few years, Laclede Rocks, a much larger area of 80-plus climbs about 15 miles west of Sandpoint on Highway 2, has had easier climbs added to its notoriously beginner-unfriendly repertoire, though you will not find them in the guidebooks yet. Three are located next to the Pend Oreille River in the riverside rocks section. There’s even a bolted 5.4 that is handy for kids. Additional new climbs are higher up, ranging from 5.7 to over 5.12 – go with the local climbers or ask someone to point them out. In May, for example, Jason Luthy added an anchor on the previously unanchored, but listed, Three Friends (5.8) on the West End Wall. The North Idaho Climbers Alliance has been inspecting the anchors at Laclede, and nearly all on the Upper Main Wall have been replaced as of 2013. NICA has been hosting regular clean-up efforts at Laclede rocks as well, improving belay stances, doing trail work and clearing away trash.

Winter Braden on the second-ever ascent of a 5.10d at the Balls Walls // Photo: Katie Botkin

additional routes that could go up. Semar has also been working on bolting several more new areas in North Idaho: six routes on the granite of Naples Rocks and seven routes at Brush Lake, as well as expanded multi-pitch lines at Turtle Arches, a rock dome near Myrtle Turtle pioneered by Joe Lind. These routes join several others in North Idaho that have been bolted recently. Finding Balls Wall: It’s a bit of a trek in the car: from Bonners Ferry,

take Riverside Street to West Side Road through the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge. Keep going until you hit Ball Creek. Take a left on Ball Creek Road and stay left on FR 432. Drive for five miles or until you see the boulder painted with the number 5. The trail is just after that on the right side. It’s a five-minute walk to the crags, but the underbrush is steep and slippery: do not wear flip-flops. The upper climbs are in the shade most of the day, whereas the lower climbs are not, so plan accordingly. //

September 2014

/ Out There Monthly


LastPage Ten years out there // By Derrick Knowles It’s hard to believe that Out There Monthly has been around for a decade. I had to round up a copy of the first issue and see it again for myself. Reading through those pages was like rummaging around a time capsule. And there was the proof – that ten years can really fly by, especially when you’re often outside having fun – right on the cover along with a whitewater kayaker: “DEBUT ISSUE! SEPT/04.” I remember how excited many in the local outdoors community were as the first issues came rolling out. It was a kind of validation that we weren’t all totally crazy for calling Spokane home and loving it for the trails, ski hills, rivers, lakes, crags, and parks right in our backyard and the epic, world-class adventures within a few hours’ drive in any direction. That excitement came pouring out like a river torrent in Out There Monthly Founder and Spokane City Councilman Jon Snyder’s first editorial. It’s a cool flashback to the times that set the stage for him to take the risk and launch a publication that we needed so badly, whether we all knew it at the time or not: “How many conversations have you had that include the phrase ‘what’s wrong with Spokane is..,’ or ‘what Spokane really needs is….’ If you are like me, the answer is too darn many. I’ve lived in Spokane most of my life, and the town’s collective self-esteem problem can wear you down after a

while. We are a lot more isolated than our big city neighbors to the West. Good ideas take a while to catch on here. Spokane does not suffer indifference gladly. If you want culture and activity here, you have to make it yourself – no one’s going to hand it to you on a silver platter, like they do in more cosmopolitan Northwest cities. But that’s OK. It means Spokane breeds a hearti-

That first Out There Monthly cover story, “Downtown Kayak Park: Impossible Dream?” captured attention and got people excited too. It also stirred up the waters of local river politics a bit. er individual. If you’ve worked for years to organize anything from a bicycle club to a theater group, you are going to appreciate it all the more. Kudos to everyone who helped drag Spokane kicking and screaming into the 21st century. You know who you are. Pat yourself on the back because Spokane has turned the corner and the future looks bright. In Spokane we are just a couple hours away from almost unlimited outdoor recreation opportunities. Whatever your favorite way to commune with nature, be it camping, hiking, swimming, cycling,

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Out There Monthly / september 2014

boating, climbing, snowboarding, or bird watching, we have it in spades – and without the kind of pollution and overcrowding you see around bigger cities. Thanks to concerned citizens and a stalwart group of local environmental organizations and responsible companies, we still have a chance to avoid the nature destruction seen in other parts of the country.

Outdoor recreation is the key to Spokane’s future. Brisk job growth and economic development will only occur when more people get hooked on Spokane’s natural surroundings. I believe this so much that I started this magazine. Come with us as we endeavor to explore every unsung nook and cranny in the outdoor Inland Northwest. Our goal is to help you have more fun out there. Jon Snyder, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief.” Snyder nailed it. That very first editorial and the

entire issue reflected the surge of energy from a growing number of people who, at the time, were starting to come out of the woodwork bubbling with pride and acknowledging what “Outside Magazine” would later conclude. Spokane is a righteous, incredibly positioned and unpretentious outdoor town. That first Out There Monthly cover story, “Downtown Kayak Park: Impossible Dream?” captured attention and got people excited too. It also stirred up the waters of local river politics a bit. Unfortunately, 10 years later, while Missoula is working on their second whitewater park to accommodate a surge in river-surfing stand up paddleboarders, a Spokane kayak park still feels too much like a nearly impossible dream. Plans for a whitewater park on the Spokane may have stalled out for a while, but that section of river right below downtown where the park was proposed has transformed in dramatic ways since then. River floating and fishing, including trips led by several outfitters, has exploded. The Centennial Trail extension and new development along the north rim of the Spokane River gorge have created an access funnel that is luring more people to discover and explore the area’s mind-blowing patchwork of gorgeous public parkland and trails. And hopefully there will be another Out There Monthly cover that will hit the racks in the next 10 years with a kayaker or paddleboarder on it, celebrating Spokane’s first whitewater park somewhere on our awesome urban river. //

Produced by Chris Kopczynski and Gibby Media In partnernship with the Dishman Hills Conservancy

A Mountain Climbers Perspective

Follow the life of local mountain climber Chris Kopczynski and his lessons learned from climbing the worldʻs highest mountains on seven continents in this feature documentary film.

Wednesday, October 8th Bing Crosby Theater • 7:30 p.m. Tickets at Tickets West Outlets $17 - All proceeds go to the Dishman Hills Conser vancy Presented in Spokane by Suzy Dix 994-9300


3011 S. GRAND BLVD. | (509) 279-2671

11AM-11PM SUN.-THUR S. | 1 1 A M-2 A M F R I. & S A T.

sweet bright creamy



/ Out There Monthly


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Out There Monthly / september 2014

Northrup Canyon, WA | Photo: Jim Rueckel

Patagonia Half Mass Messenger Reg $99.00

September 2014  

Uncommon Adventures Spokane's Bouldering Shangri-La Cascade Summer Skiing North Fork Fly Fishing New North Idaho Climbing Running with Dogs...

September 2014  

Uncommon Adventures Spokane's Bouldering Shangri-La Cascade Summer Skiing North Fork Fly Fishing New North Idaho Climbing Running with Dogs...