The Great Solar Eclipse of 2017 crossed the continent, from Oregon to South Carolina, and gave millions of people the chance to witness one of the most awe-inspiring events in the natural world.
Nik's photo of the August 21 eclipse, photographed from Glendo, Wyoming. The star, Regulus, is barely visible to the lower left of the solar corona.
But you had to be within the "path of totality", a narrow band across the earth's surface
several thousand miles long but only about 70 miles wide. Outside that band you would only see a partial eclipse, not a total eclipse.
And there is no such thing as a "partial total eclipse", despite the impression blogs and the news media might give.
I honestly think that's why so many people misunderstand the utter beauty of the spectacle; they may have seen a partial eclipse in the past that was total somewhere else, and even though they weren't in the path the news kept gushing about it being a total
eclipse, so they assume they must have seen a total eclipse and just didn't find it all that impressive.
Posted by Dan 08/29/2017, revised 09/06/2017
(Our kids have grown and are no longer posting blog stories here.
Below are some highlights from past posts.)
Oops, I Did An IM
A full Ironman. It's not a thing you do by accident. And yet there I was about 120 miles in, saying aloud, "I don't even know what I'm doing out here!" which I suppose could have been interpreted a number of different ways by the other runners within earshot.
It all started a few weeks ago, as I was swimming laps on a lovely Boulder afternoon, when an idea popped into my head. Sometimes I do my best thinking while swimming.
Since relocating, I had set my sights on the IM Boulder 70.3 as a good choice for the season's "A" race. It's in August, and it's practically down the street from where I live, so the logistics would be super simple, leaving me to focus solely on the work of racing hard.
So I was swimming, and thinking about August, and about training, and I suddenly realized -- hey, there's a full Boulder Ironman some time in June. Maybe I should use it as a big workout day. What a perfect way to prep for the 70.3! Get in a solid open water swim at the same venue. Seize the opportunity for a supported long ride, where fresh water bottles magically appear in my hand at regular intervals. And then I could just skip that stupid marathon, because who wants to do all that extra running anyway? Not me!
I was a little nervous about bringing up the idea of entering the Ironman to my coach, because we have a focused plan we're working on for the summer, and the long post IM recovery is not part of that. But he was thrilled. He said it would be a great day of quality training on the bike, and we planned to even include a few miles of run before I surrendered my timing chip and headed to brunch. Because a little brick run is the cherry on top of every great cycling workout.
I kept the plan on the down-low because I didn't want people to be disappointed when they found out I didn't finish. And I had to constantly remind myself -- it's not a race, it's a training day!
Ironman makes that hard, though, with all their pomp and fanfare.
For a training day that was supposed to be light on logistics, this ended up being a lot of running around. I managed to make three individual trips to the Ironman Expo downtown, plus the trip out to the reservoir to drop off my bike. Pros were granted the privilege of driving in with their bikes on race morning, and I assumed I'd just bike the two miles over to the reservoir, but we were told NO bike commuting to the race site (because it was too dark). Since Brad and I are a car-free household, this presented a problem, both for getting my bike to the reservoir on Saturday, and for getting myself to the race site the next day. Athletes were told to take shuttles out to the race, but I was pretty sure I could walk to the reservoir in the time it would take me to get downtown, wait in the shuttle line, and sit smooshed in that school bus for the six mile ride out to the race start.
This training day was turning into a bit of a headache!
The night before the race -- er, training day, I looked up the final version of the pro roster and saw that there were only ten women on the list, including me ... and prize money for this race goes ten deep. Basically all I had to do was finish before midnight, and I'd go home with a paycheck. But finishing was not in the plan.
Posted by Kimberly 06/16/2017
Cambodia to Malaysia, Via Thailand
Well, I was gonna write all about the rest of Laos and Cambodia but I've fallen dreadfully behind so let's take up from our reentry into Thailand.
This time through Thailand began with a 24 hour trip from Siem Reap, in Cambodia, all the way to Krabi, with a brief stopover in Bangkok long enough to arrange the next leg. Krabi is well known for its world class climbing. The small beaches in Krabi are isolated from the mainland by towering Limestone cliffs.
Rock climbers paradise
The main beaches are Aow Nang, the busy primary stop accessible from the mainland, Railey East and Railey West, two beaches on the peninsula and accessible by boat, and Ton Sai, a tiny cove that can be accessed by boat or from Railey at low tide. Aow Nang is used as a jumping off point for the islands in the area or to catch boats to the other beaches. Railey's beaches have excellent climbing but are dominated by expensive family resorts and the families that go with them. Ton Sai is wonderfully removed from the resort beaches and far cheaper. The result: Ton Sai abounds with rock climbers from around the world; it is to rock climbing what Koh Tao is to diving.
The first day we were able to rent gear and enjoy some of Krabi's epic climbing at Ton Sai, a short walk from our bungalow. By the end of the day we could feel the effects through our unconditioned arms and opted to make the next day a day of rest.
Posted by nik 12/03/2008, revised 02/06/2009
time for school
The day has come when I finally have to do school work again. While I was not looking forward to this interruption in my life of leisure, I was starting to get a bit anxious to meet people and start joining some clubs and activities.
I played some pick-up ultimate frisbee yesterday - got a little exhaustion back in these retired soccer legs of mine! I guess you could say they're re-TIRED... heh. I crack myself up. I also joined the Dive Club and will be joining in some of their reef trips in the coming months, as much as my money will allow me :) Reef diving isn't cheap.
I'm also currently working on making my way down to Byron Bay (which is a little over 19 hours drive down the coast!) for Easter weekend for a huge Blues and Roots festival. 5 days, 5 stages, incredible music. Some of the artists I look forward to seeing there:
Xavier Rudd, G. Love, Maceo Parker, Keb Mo', KT Tunstall, OAR, Emdee, Ozomatli, Jason Mraz, Black Crowes, John Butler Trio... and about 50 other artists. Yeah, it's gonna be amazing. But I'm not sure how I'm going to get there. Buses or planes would cost me a good $300+ round trip. I wouldn't mind making an adventure out of the drive, but that requires finding someone with a car and the same twisted sense of adventure.
But the way I see it, I have to get to this festival. So if it means dropping some money for the experience of a lifetime, then so be it, eh?
That's all for now. I'll keep you posted on my ride search!
Posted by Whitney 03/06/2008