Sunday Sermon

Go outside
and let your breath
be stolen away.
Find the forests,
seek the seas,
meditate
on the mountains,
mist covered
from morning.
We are nurtured
by nature, born
for the wild places;
we’ve no business
in cities, in buildings
taller than trees
can grow.
Go outside,
and begin living
again.

Tyler Knott Gregson

 

 

 

 

–Tyler Knott Gregson
Typewriter Series #1487

On The Page: Exploring The Historic San Juan Triangle

I finally go smart this summer and made a box specifically of “books I haven’t read” since I’m on a strict “you can’t buy any more books until you finish the ones you already have” budget. One of those books was Exploring The Historic San Juan Triangle by P. David Smith. I bought this book back in 2013 when I first moved to Ridgway and it just never seemed to be accessible when I needed a book. I definitely missed out due to my procrastination!

Exploring the Historic San Juan Triangle

Smith’s history of the San Juan Triangle, the area roughly bounded by Ouray, Telluride, and Silverton, is an excellent crash course in the history of settlement and mining in the region. The first chapters of the book describe the histories of the main towns in the region: Silverton, Lake City, Ouray, and Telluride. (My beloved Ridgway sits just outside the triangle and has some definite ranching vs mining roots.) Just a few pages into the history, as Smith described how miners started to drift into the San Juans while they were still officially Ute lands, I realized I know nothing really about this area. Since the book is written partially as history and partially as a travel guide there was some emphasis on the locations (past and present) of key buildings but I really enjoyed that since I could picture each of the towns.

After the histories of individual towns, there is a series of chapters that give a fairly exhaustive explanation of mines and ghost towns that existed along Jeep routes in the area. I can picture many of the places he mentions but I’m just itching to get back out and check out the rest of them! In addition to covering the “classic” routes (Imogene, Black Bear, Cinnamon, Engineer, etc.) Smith talks about spur roads and lesser known routes as well.

Beaumont Hotel Ouray,CO

As I mentioned, the book is written as a guide to travel so sometimes the narration is a bit clunky. Dividing the history up into specific locations is helpful when you’re driving or visiting one of the towns but sometimes that also makes for a bit of repetitiveness to the history. That being said, however, if you like history and context for your exploring and you plan on visiting the San Juans (or if you need some inspiration to come check out my gorgeous mountains), Exploring The San Juan Triangle is an excellent place to start diving in!

Ouray Hiking: Abrams Mountain

Abrams Mountain is visible from Ridgway, perched right above the town of Ouray. At 12,801′, it is disproportionately prominent in the skyline to its size when compared with other peaks in the Sneffels range. I’ve been up to the Brown Mountain ridge a couple of times but I’ve never hiked it all the way out to the summit of Abrams. (Abrams’s summit it hidden by the tree in the left third of the photo below.)

River views

After work yesterday, Sprocket and I went to the river so that he could frolic and swim. I threw the stick for him and laughed as my retriever would get the stick out of the water but would not bring it back to me. He, on the other hand, would come dripping wet and look at me expectantly. Eventually, I noticed there were hardly any clouds in the sky and it only took me a second of deliberation before we were headed back to the house to get Ruth.

Red Mountains

The climb from the Brown Mountain jeep road up to the saddle between 13er Brown Mountain and the ridge to Abrams is steep. It took me 25 minutes to attain the ridge in just a half mile (maybe I can improve on it another day when I head to Brown?). Our light was fading rapidly but there was still enough light to make our way along the sometimes rocky and sometimes grassy ridge.

Brown Mountain hike

The ridge was more complex than it had looked on a map and I made a mental note to stay on the absolute crown of the ridge on the way back to the Jeep. Heading downslope too early would be a huge mistake since only one drainage would take me back where I needed to go, any others would either cliff me out or drop me far from my car.

Mount Abrams hike

As we made our way out to the summit, I chuckled a bit at myself. I was functioning on four hours of sleep and by all logical measures, where I should have been was in bed. Instead, it was 9:30 and I was still hiking away from the car. I’d already decided, however, that addressing my mountain deficit was way more important than my sleep deficit.

Sunset from Brown Mountain saddle

Brown Mountain Ridge

Summit of Abrams from the RidgeSadly, my iPhone was no help in capturing the beauty that was hiking the last bit to the summit in the almost total dark. We summited without headlamp and without a moon as the last streaks of sunset faded over the Sneffels Range and Log Hill Mesa. The wind was blowing but it was warm and I briefly regretted not having a sleeping bag to stay and wait for sunrise. Sprocket and I just sat together as the darkness became complete. I finally felt like I was breathing easy. We could see the lights of Ouray, Ridgway, and all the way up to Montrose. The Milky Way was coming out.

Sunset streaks

Knowing that I had plenty to do in the coming days and a long hike back down the ridge plus the drive down the mountain, we didn’t linger too long.

Summit Selfies

I regret nothing.

Dallas Trail Escape

Sprocket is really bearing the brunt of me working a ton of hours so when I got off at 6pm one evening last week, we headed up County Road 9 to take a short hike on the Dallas Trail.

Ruth XJ and Mears Peak

Beth and Sprocket on the Dallas Trail

From the minute we pulled into Box Factory Park, this cheesy grin stuck itself to my face and didn’t go away for a long time. The air smelled absolutely amazing, the rain seemed to be holding off behind the Sneffels Range, and the wildflowers are out in force.

Wildflowers

Sprocket

Beth and Sprocket

Sprocket loves our hiking runs where he sniffs his way up slopes and careens down the hills with his ears and tail whipping all over the place.

image

Sneffels Range

Dallas Trail Views

Hayden Peak

Meadows and mountains

I think the two of us definitely needed that decompression time. I’m going to make a lot bigger effort to take advantage of all the hikes that are so close to me during these precious chunks of time.

To top it all off, we were treated to a gorgeous sunset on our way back to town:

Sunset

Sneffels Range Sunset

Sunset

Sunday Sermon

“Those who won our independence believed that the final end of the state was to make men free to develop their faculties, and that in its government the deliberative forces should prevail over the arbitrary. They valued liberty both as an end and as a means. They believed liberty to be the secret of happiness and courage to be the secret of liberty. They believed that freedom to think as you will and to speak as you think are means indispensable to the discovery and spread of political truth; that without free speech and assembly discussion would be futile; that with them, discussion affords ordinarily adequate protection against the dissemination of noxious doctrine; that the greatest menace to freedom is an inert people; that public discussion is a political duty; and that this should be a fundamental principle of the American government.” [Emphasis mine.]

Louis D. Brandeis

 

 

 

 

 

–Louis D. Brandeis

 

Bonus: I didn’t know anything about Justice Brandeis aside from the fact that in college we played Brandeis College and they were largely Jewish until recently. I was fascinated by this Fresh Air interview with Jeffery Rosen, author of Louis D. Brandeis: American Prophet. I found it super fascinating; check it out!

Gear Review: Field Trip Jerky

Trail snacks are not my forté. I need them and I usually devour some while out on the trail. I would like to say that I make lovely lunches and snacks at home but really, I have a large Tupperware tote in my cabinet (or in my shed) full of miscellaneous bars, tuna packets, and some single serve powdered drink mixes and tablets that I can just grab and shove in my backpack. I am kind of picky about what I choose to eat though and try to allot my (few) dollars towards natural foods whenever possible.

At Winter Outdoor Retailer, I met Todd of Field Trip Jerky. Field Trip doesn’t use corn syrup as a sweetener (common in many jerky products), it’s gluten free, and delicious. The folks at Field Trip were kind enough to send me a package of their different flavors to sample and truthfully, I liked them all.

Views to the Elks and Lamborn

They make both beef and turkey jerky. I loved the flavor of the Crushed Chiles Turkey Jerky (ummm…and I would love it in beef, hinthint) and enjoyed the Cracked Pepper as well.

The beef flavors were my favorite, however with Roasted Sesame and Teriyaki leading the way with Original and Honey Spice just barely behind.

Field Trip Jerky Ouray

The packages are resealable which I really appreciate when I just want a little something to chew on but don’t want to eat the whole package. (If you open one with a friend around though, don’t expect to have any to put away.)

As I mentioned before, the folks at Field Trip do it right. Check out their ingredients in their scrumptious Roasted Sesame:

Field Trip Roasted Sesame Ingredients

I totally recommend Field Trip for your next hike, roadtrip, or couch snacking. Many Starbucks location carry Field Trip and you can buy it on their website or on Amazon.

 

Field Trip Jerky provided me with jerky for sampling but all opinions are my own. Some links in this post are affiliate links that help support 3Up Adventures.

Happy Birthday, Nons

Dear readers,

You might think you’re a loyal reader and that you’ve been checking things out for awhile. You know about my goals and my adventures and that’s awesome.

But today is my very best, most loyal readers’ 90th Birthday.

Nons and Beth

Happy birthday, Nons.

You never fail to make my day when you talk about how much you love reading my blog posts and tell me about how beautiful my photos are. I couldn’t ask for anyone to be more supportive of my dreams: I’m pretty sure there is no one else in this world as invested as me in seeing a home built in Ridgway and you never fail to ask when I’m going to have more travels to post about (I’m sorry there have been so few lately!). I don’t know many 90 year olds that are avid blog readers; at least of their granddaughter’s blog!

Thank you for always being interested in what I’m doing, teaching me the art of Norwegian Cookie making, feeding me, and being one of my biggest fans. Chatting on the phone every other week or so is a poor substitute for being back in town but I look forward to it.

I’m sorry I can’t be there with you in Tacoma to celebrate today. I love you so much.

-Beth

Elsewhere on the Web: Interviewed on Campfire Chic


I’ve been working like a madwoman lately which has made for a quiet summer here on the blog but I did recently make time for an interview with Kam of Campfire Chic. Kam isn’t a dog owner herself but wanted some of my thoughts about traveling with a pup. Basically I preach my views on putting your dog first: go check it out!

Kam describes herself as a “crafty micro-adventurer and chronic beginner;” not so shocking that we’d be internet pals, huh?