Sunday, October 14, 2012

Winter? Already?

Hello from the now frozen north!  So much has occurred since I last wrote.  Updating on a regular basis is much harder than I expected it to be.  I am going to really try hard to make sure I keep up with this.

We bought a fire pit!  We now have the ability to make s'mores and di tonight!  It snowed a few inches today, the first snow that stuck in the city.  We decided to celebrate with the fire pit, roasted marshmellows, and episodes of Community.  A fantastic Saturday night.

The clerks have started a "peak of the week" hiking group.  We hike a different mountain every week and still have so much to explore in Anchorage.  Here are some photos from our recent hikes on Little O'Malley, Rendezvous Peak, and Wolverine Peak.

Fall on Little O'Malley

Sunset over the Turnagain Arm

The Valley Near Little O'Malley

View from Rendezvous Peak

No one said these hikes were dry

Snow starts to fall on the ridge line

Some of the Peak of the Week Crew

Enchanted Forest on Wolverine

Hiking Through the Snow

The trail was completely iced over - we had to walk around in the snow!

Foraker and Denali, two of America's four tallest mountains
One of the things I am amazed about up here is how great the local government is.  Up here, it is called the Muni (short for Municipality of  Anchorage), and it puts on some amazing local events and provides some really great public services.  The first of these events that I’ve become involved with is the Tuesday Night Races.  Those of you who know me well know that I am not a natural runner, but I’ve been getting involved in these races and have really been enjoying myself.  The Muni puts on a race every Tuesday night from the beginning of September through the first week of November.  The races go through a different park and different trail each week and they are incredibly hilly.  My goal is to finish each week, and so far I haven’t come in complete last place yet.  In addition to the races, the Muni sponsors ski classes (that I am signed up for), ice skating on Westchester Lagoon, and maintains over onehundred miles of groomed ski trails.  Ready for the winter!

I’ve also been cooking up a storm and experimenting with new and exciting foods.  The roommates and I have been enjoying Sunday family dinners, and I have been baking every week.  So far, I’ve made salted caramel hot chocolate, tikka masala with naan, lemon garlic chicken, butternut squash mashed potatoes, and more baked goods than I can recount.
I also have a new car.  My poor Volvo met her unfortunate end because of a rock that popped up off the road on the way down from Rendezvous Peak.  It put a hole in my oil pan, all my oil drained out, and my engine seized.  Fortunately, Geico covered the whole thing, totalled out the car, and I now have a new (old) 1995 Subaru Legacy.  GOG8RS license plate survived the transfer.  BAM!
Finally, last night there was an Aurora.  It was the most amazing thing I have ever seen.  We went out to Earthquake Park and watched the neon green lights dance above the city.  I can’t wait until we go to Fairbanks in January and get to see the colors on a full spectrum. 

Finally, as always, my backyard!