Rainy days

The summer rains are here in Nome. Since returning from Gambell it has been raining and damp. I get a kick out of trying to establish a pattern to the weather here each year. The only consistency in the 10 years I’ve been in Nome is that it’s either winter or it’s not and if you wait for a nice day to do something you will be waiting a long time. This week is a little bit of a drag but in a few daydreaming moments I have been envisioning two races. The first, of course, is one of unfinished business the route to Nome of the Iditarod invitational bike race and the second is the Yukon 1000 kayak race next summer. The Yukon 1000 is a perfect fit for me, even my wife thought so when she heard about the inaugural race for 2009. The only down side is it seems a bit “rule-heavy” and there is no solo class. I have been racking my mind to see who to partner with for a race this size and I actually thought of two mountain bikers. We’ll see if one of them is interested...

Back to earth, I am looking forward to the unknown Imuruk Lake trip in two weeks and will actually be going with a friend. Someone that’ll go with me on one of my hair brained schemes! Wow! A lot of folks wonder why I go solo out in the country so frequently, well for one it’s easier because I’m making all the decisions and going with my gut feelings on things. And two I always get the raised eyebrow look if I asked someone. I’ll keep you posted on how this trip goes. As far as I know no one has attempted to bike to Imuruk Lake before. It’s going to be epic, ha ha.

I am also feeling good going with someone because the whole bear situation is getting out of hand. My friend Pete helped save a girl who was mauled recently in Anchorage during a bike race, jeez that sounded awful. Then a bear was sited on the east end of town here a few days ago. I’ve had a few run-ins with bears over the years and it’s no fun always being on the edge of your seat going solo. My last real close encounter was on a kayak trip 2 summers ago when a young grizzly started pushing in my tent while I was inside. Not a fun thing to see a paw pushing on your tent and me wondering “hmmm what is that” while I was totally wiped out from a harrowing day on the water. In any case it’ll be nice to share the burden next week.

I think I’ve rambled enough to last at least a few days.