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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Grand Central Valley

Drive drive drive

On Saturday I had about 4 hours to do something out in the country.  I rushed to put together my fatbike and bare essentials and drove out to Grand Central. One of my favorite valley's, my goal was to see how a fat bike would do on the "trail".  It's a very tundra, bushwacky trail to the base of mnt osbourne, the highest peak on the Seward Peninsula at ~ 4,800 ft. I did this one a number of times but last time was with a crappy bike and had a taco tire within a few miles.  I only made it half way up the valley before I ran out of time but it was great to scope out a new route... straight up the grand central river. Better than tundra whacking, high willows and thrashing the bike.  Next time will be to the top of Osbourne with the fatbike. 

Nice views up the valley

Bare essentials, which one is the mosquito repellent?? 
Straight up grand cental river

Yes the fat bike does float.....

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Three little bears... and momma.

A friend of mine, Chris, took his friends on the Kuzitrin River last weekend and around one of the bends was this rowdy bunch.  Great images and glad he gave me a few copies to post.  All Photo credit goes to: Thomas Covington. 
Photo by Thomas Covington

Photo by Thomas Covington

Photo by Thomas Covington

Photo by Thomas Covington
Just makes you want to get a really good zoom lens camera.... don't it?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Future songwriters

This is a classic photo.  Sarah put on a songwriter showcase again this past weekend, I believe it's her 6th one in Nome.  Here she is singing with Joe on her back.  His first stage appearance conked out. Awesome.  It didn't seem too long ago we were doing the same thing with Hahnah and now Hahnah made her debut singing "Twinkle Twinkle".  Not her own song but not bad for age 3. Wish I had a picture of that. 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Birds of prey... on me.

The past week of running and biking found the occasional swoop from a seagull but I never got the nano out in time for a video, especially while biking.  There does not seem to be a pattern or a place just sort of random areas where the gulls come down and scare the heck outta me.  Once I almost wiped out on the bike because one did a dive bomb.  Not to drag it out or make it dramatic because in some ways it's fun. I firmly believe these birds are enjoying doing it.  I added a song since my mic must be off, I thought "Nuttin but stringz" was appropriate.

Untitled from Philip Hofstetter on Vimeo.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Doesn't it look like Hawaii? Helicopter rides, swimming and an awesome bbq... What a rockin' department picnic... in Nome!! Thanks Jamie and Ben!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Beach Day

Look at those clouds, a short break in rain, rain, rain. 

Hahnah not afraid of the Bering Sea.  

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Wind tunnels and seagulls

Who needs a wind tunnel when you live in Nome.  I've been training for this triathlon and this one for August and have been "trying" to ride my new road bike. "Trying" is the key word.  Oh yeah, while Nome has hundreds of miles of gravel road we only have 10 miles of paved road, that is a loop.   Oh yeah, it hasn't stopped raining in 2 weeks and oh yeah it is constantly blowing 20-30 mph.  All I could think of when riding is that I am in a wind tunnel with a sadist at the control board. "Ok turn on the rain", "crank up the wind", "no I want a cross wind", "lower that temperature to 39",  "lets see how those entry level 105 cranks handle some dirt".

Aero (and geometry) are the key in tri's and finding a comfortable tuck is a little hard to do in a cross wind. The last two rides were 25 miles in 1 hr 10 minutes and I was so cold I couldn't feel my legs or feet.  A 25 mph headwind in the rain going 17 mph at 40 degrees is a lot of windchill and a lot of discomfort. I'd rather ride the fatbike going 3 mph in a snowstorm at -20.  I admit having a light carbon road bike is fun, it's fast and wildly dangerous but it doesn't seem like a workout to me.  It's more just plain chaos. I can't tell if my heart rate is up because I'm so focused on technique, comfort, small adjustments, paying intense attention to the road and trying to survive a ride in crappy weather.

Since the pool closed on July 1st I have had to alternate running and biking with weight training.  Because of upcoming triathlons I am focusing on speed training rather than distance and realize (although not surprising) I don't have any speed. The hoka's are definitely allowing me to run more. In addition to my usual 8 mile loop I was able to complete a 20 mile training run and more recently a 12 mile Anvil mnt race but I just can't get faster than 7-8 min miles.

To top it off, during my run yesterday I got attacked. Nope it wasn't the sled dog that was loose when I passed by a doglot but a ridiculously aggressive seagull a few miles later. There I was running along in my own world when I casually glanced to my left and saw a seagull, at eye level, silently diving what must be 30 mph straight at me. I ducked at the last minute and the gull extended his feet screeching at the same time, pissed as hell.  It was a devil reincarnate as it gained some height circled around and made for another dive bomb.  What the heck!? I've had my share of animal encounters but a seagull? Geez. On its second dive I was too busy watching the gull and not where I was going and tripped and fell flat on my face.  Gravel embedded in my hand, I scrapped my knee and drew blood.  I ran down the road as fast as I could.  I might have to go back and get video of this lunatic bird, likely protecting a nest but glad no one got video of me.

Saturday, July 9, 2011


Short but fun ride. 

Tundra is never as smooth as it looks. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Yeah this is good.

I don't normally hijack from someone else's post but gee this is good... really really great.

Click here or here.

Just makes you want to do something a little more than what you normally do.