Wednesday, March 21, 2007

President's Day Weekend

I know that I'm back tracking, but I have to make up for the past. This was a fun weekend, and I have to post it even though it was a month ago.

We headed up to Salt Lake on Friday after work. For some reason I really like this drive; it's about 6 hours but feels like 3. We got to Laura's sisters house around 11:00 and stayed up talking until 12:30. The next morning I woke up early and met up with my buddy Matt Gover. We did some ice climbing down in Santaquin Canyon; I hadn't done this for a while and it was a blast (OK, it scared me but I hadn't done it for 4 to 5 years).

This is a 2 pitch climb that we did called Squashhead. It's a classic in Santaquin Canyon.

Saturday afternoon I jammed up to Ogden to see my little sister's basketball game. They beat Sacramento; it was good to see my little sis, mom, and Eric.
The next day I went with Matt down to the San Rafel Swell. This is a awesome place basically in the middle of nowhere. This is home to some of the best desert crack climbing in the west. The whole place is a maze of slot canyons, and sweet desert scenery.

These are few photos of Matt climbing at the first

There was only one guy from our group that attempted this climb, it looked pretty burly.

The rest of the weekend was spent with Laura's family. She has 3 nephews, 2 of which we played with in the snow. Man they have a lot of energy. The drive back from Salt Lake was pretty hairy. It was a blizzard all the way from SLC past Cedar City. Finally halfway between Cedar and St. George it cleared up. We must had counted 10 cars that had slid off the highway.

Being in Salt Lake made me realize how much I missed it. There is such good access to tons of outdoor sports that I love. But as with many things there are seasons in a person's life and right now Las Vegas is the place I need to be. I did make a promise to Matt to get up to Utah a little more this year and I look forward to it.

Official Race Times

Yes my wife is faster than me. This is one of those small reasons that I chose her, she is always outdoing me.

Laura Time 2:07:33 Pace 8:30 mins. / mile

Ben Time 2:20:57 Pace 10:46 mins. / mile

She's going to have to train harder, I'm only getting faster and I plan on at least keeping up with her in the San Diego Marathon.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Six Tunnels Half Marathon

This was a big weekend for the Harbers. It was our first race of many planned this summer. Saturday morning we drove out to Lake Mead for an 8:00 start. It was nice to start in the morning but it wasn't long until it was in the 90s.

The course was staged on an old decommissioned Union Pacific railroad track. We ran through six tunnels where they had to cut through solid rock for the original track (hence the name of the race). The race then continued through the middle of the desert, and at this point it was blazing hot. The course turned into and old fire road that was sand a loose gravel. This made it pretty tough not to mention the 2 mile stretch that was uphill. Laura and I both said that we were glad we didn't notice how steep the course was until the way down. I'm just happy that I heard from many different people that it was a hard course, it kicked my butt.

I will now reveal my race strategy. Laura thinks it's because I got to the start line late, but I say it was purely strategic. I started at the very end of the pack, there might have been 10 people behind me. My start was slow so that I could warm up, and I had to let the pack thin out. After about 20 minutes. I picked up the pace and immediately started passing people that had started too fast. It easy to start too fast when your excited for the race. Because I had started in the rear, all I did the whole race was pass people. This was purely mental for me, every time I passed someone it was as thought I took their soul (Ha Ha) and their energy.

Laura and I both finished faster than we had planned. I will have the official finish times by tomorrow.
We recommend everyone find something to train for otherwise it's hard to get out and exercise. Only 2 1/2 months to the San Diego Marathon!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Back in the Saddle

I realize that I haven't posted anything for a long while. I had a good friend say that he was constantly checking the blog and that he was disappointed not to see anything new. I then received a threat that if I didn't at least make an effort he would remove me from his favorites list. So here you go, I'm going forward with a new commitment to post at least once a week.