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Mt Rainier: Paradise and Van Trump Park

It’s been a busy couple of weeks around Mountain Lessons HQ (ie, my Subaru). With the lax winter precipitation, there hasn’t been a lot to do around Portland besides pretending that it’s Spring. Except, unlike spring, the temperatures are still sufficiently wint’ry to prevent a predicatble corn cycle. This is life

With a long weekend jiggered together, Taylor and I decided to run up to Mt Rainier last weekend. It has been, I’m ashamed to admit, almost a decade since I was last there. What an enormous mountain, what amazing terrain, and what startling proximity to Portland (2.5hrs!?). We didn’t read the forecast and as a consequence, we were pleasantly surprised to discover almost a foot of stable, fresh snow under splitter blue skies.

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We started up the main cattle drive to Camp Muir… with every skier in Seattle in tow.

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Running into winds up high (blowing clouds visible at left) we decided to scoop the primo run right next to the skin track. Taylor makes tracks in the cloud shadow.

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Marin Headlands Run

On break in San Francisco, I was getting too fat and lazy, immersed as I was in the free-cookies-and-beer world of Air BnB headquarters. Ethan said that I would be remiss if I didn’t make it to the Marin Headlands for a run– that it was like “running through a Patagonia ad“.

The golden gate bridge, on my return trip.

The golden gate bridge, on my return trip.

Well, SF public transit really sucks, and there are only busses to the headlands on the weekends. This was frustrating. After hitting my head against a table for a few hours trying to figure out a ride (driving in SF also sucks), I decided to do what I usually do and turn a simple run into a big adventure by biking there and back.

Armed with a cruiser bike borrowed from my Air BnB host (thanks Ian!) I navigated the bike-unfriendly bike routes of San Francisco, up and over the tourist clogged golden gate bridge, and out to the quiet, foggy headlands. Read on →