Monday, April 26, 2010

Paddling & Running

The Food Guy and I rolled back into Athens this afternoon after another fun little adventure. We packed up the mobile dog house early (and I mean early) saturday morning to make the trip up to Reeve's house in Scarietta. Food Guy woke me up at 6:30 in the morning and told me it was time to eat breakfast. Really, it seemed more like a midnight snack to me since I don't EVER get up at that hour. I looked at the Food Guy as if to say, "Seriously, 6:30 am? Is this why you spent the last three years in school? So we could get up at 6:30?" He explained to me that we had to get up this early because he and Reeve had a plan to go paddle and run up in the Cohuttas. I said, "Well, you'd better let me stay with Java and Bella at Reeve's house 'cause I'm not swimming down some stupid flooded river with you while you kayak." The Food Guy decided that was a reasonable request, so he let me chill with Java, Bella, Rin, and little Pearse while he and Reeve went off on their silly adventure. He told me all about it when he picked me up last night so we could go hang out in Mid-town with Lisa. It sounds like a pretty good day, so I'll give y'all the highlights.

First they drove up to Cisco, grabbed a chicken biscuit, and then into the Cohutta Wilderness. When they got to the river, they dropped their running shoes, some water, food, and some Red Bull off at the take out and then drove up to Chicken Coop Gap to hike down to the river with their boats.

The hike down sounded a little crazy to me. He said it was about 150 feet straight down the mountain to the river. They had to rope their boats down in front of them for most of the hike-in. Once they got there, they drank some Red Bull to re-charge the batteries.

The river was much higher than they thought it would be. It rained a lot the night before, but it is springtime and the trees tend to suck up a lot of water. The trees left enough water for the river to be really high.

He said that they had a lot of fun paddling, and it was a good day of knocking the rust off before his big trip out west this summer. Food Guy said the rapids were a lot of fun, and it was a part of the Cohuttas he'd never seen before.

They spent about 3 and a half hours paddling down the river before they got to the take out. Then, they changed into their running stuff, ate a power bar, drank some water, and started running back up the mountain to Reeve's truck. The run was about 8 miles, and I'm sorry I missed that part. I love running in the woods.

All in all, though, it sounds like it was a pretty good day to stay at the house. I like being in the woods, but y'all know I'm not a huge fan of swimming. And, there's no way I could have made it across that river. We'll be hanging out in Athens most of the week, and I'm sure we'll get a few good runs in here in town. Food Guy has some papers to grade, but I think we'll manage to get another little adventure in before the week is over, so stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Running for Betty

It's been a pretty quiet week so far here in Athens. The Food Guy has been doing a little work on his classes for the fall and I've been getting some rest. We went for a good little recovery run yesterday, and we'll do another easy one this afternoon. We need to recover a little from this weekend's adventure. It was a pretty good one.

Reeve and the Food Guy had planned a run in the memory of Reeve's Mom Betty, who died five years ago saturday. So, Food Guy, Lisa, and I loaded up Saturday morning in Mid-town and made the drive up to Reeve and Rin's place up in Scarietta. That's OTP (Outside The Perimeter for those of you who don't live around the ATL) , which means we were already halfway to the mountains by the time we got to their house. Once we loaded up in Reeve's truck, we drove up to Beech Bottom on Jack's River in the Cohuttas where Food Guy and Reeve started their run. I sat this one out and hung with my ladies because I just wasn't feel 18 miles that day. I like to leave the silly mileage (over 15) to the Food Guy. They got started and made the first river crossing of the day at Jack's River. Check it out:

Reeve and Food Guy spent the next 3 hours slogging their way up to top of Panther Creek:

It sounded like it was a brutal climb, and I'm pretty glad I missed it.

After goofing around, eating a cliff bar, and checking out the view, Food Guy and Reeve started the decent to the Conasauga River, which took them another hour or so. Then, they spent the next two hours going back and forth across the river making their way to Betty Gap. Yup, they wanted to finish at Betty Gap to honor Reeve's mom. There were 25 river crossings between Panther Creek Falls and Betty Gap. Check out Reeve at one of the prettier ones:

They're all pretty though. We went backpacking there last week, and I really do love that place. In fact, I talked Lisa, Rin and my favorite trail dog Java into hiking down Betty Gap to meet Reeve and the Food Guy. I know how tired I was last time we made that trip, so I wanted to be there to encourage Reeve and the Food Guy as they made the final climb of the day. They looked pretty tired when we met up with them. They had been running for about 5 and half hours at this point.

But, I think they were pretty happy to see us, and be near the end of the run. It was getting close to dark after all. Once we all met up, we walked together up the last mile to Betty Gap. All in all it was one of the better days we've had this year. The Food Guy was happy to go on a long run with Reeve and it was great to honor Betty. She was a really cool lady. I know Reeve misses her, so I was happy to play a small part in honoring her memory. Reeve and the Food Guy had a great run. He's still pretty tired, which is good because that means we'll take it easy and just do short runs for most of the week. Even an energetic Yellow Dog like me needs an easy week once in a while.

Well, that's about it for now. This week will be a pretty chill one. Food Guy might make a little trip over to Shaking Rock for some afternoon bouldering one day, but mostly we'll be chilling here. I'm sure we'll cook up a good adventure this weekend, so stay tuned for our next tale (ha ha that never gets old) from the woods.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Bouldering at Shaking Rock

Hey y'all. The Food Guy and I just got back from a good adventure in the ATL and the Cohuttas, but I'll have to write about that one later this week. I just got some photos from our friend Steven from our bouldering trip to Shaking Rock from last weekend, so I figured I'd tell y'all about that trip first. Last weekend Food Guy, Lisa, Steven, and I loaded up and took the short drive out of Athens for a little Sunday morning bouldering.

This place is pretty cool. I like it because it's a pretty laid back place where I can hang out and watch as my peeps climb around. Check out the Food Guy climbing on this boulder near the entrance:

There aren't a lot of problems to climb on, but it sure beats a long ride in the truck. We can be there in less than 30 minutes. It's way better than staying home while the Food Guy goes to the climbing gym, and it looks like the people have a good time climbing around there. We didn't stay around all that long. Food Guy and Lisa had to get back to Athens to get ready for the week to start. He had to get ready for that dissertation defense (so glad that's over) and Lisa had to get back to the ATL to get ready for her last week of student teaching. She finished on Friday! Congrats to her! She rocks for getting that over with, and now she'll have more free time to hang out and go on adventures with me and the Food Guy.

Well, I'm pretty tired from our latest trip. I'm gonna get some sleep, but I'll write a new post soon. The Food Guy has some pretty sweet photos from this weekend, so check back soon.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

My Food Guy is a Doctor

Hey everybody, I have some pretty good news to share. The Food Guy got up really early this morning and left the house wearing much nicer clothes than normal. It was weird. There was this strange sound coming from his phone (I think it's what people call an alarm clock). It was very strange. I don't hear sounds like that very often. I was confused when he made me get up to go outside so early when he didn't have his running shoes one. I gave him my best, "What the hell is going on look" as he took me for a very short walk wearing nice pants (not Carhardt or climbing pants) and long sleeve shirt-- without wrinkles. Then, without our usual morning coffee drinking (him) after breakfast/walk naptime, he grabbed that black and red computer bag that he carries when he goes to work and left the house. That's when I remembered where he was going.

He had to defend his dissertation today. I went back to sleep 'cause well I knew he was going to pass. A few hours later he came back home with a spring in his step. He looked all happy- like I do when he takes my backpack off when we are hiking. That's when I knew that I was assured of a lifetime supply of dog bones and dog food. Yup, he might not be a prescription writing, lab coat wearing, stethoscope carrying kind of doctor. But, he's a better kind. The kind who has most mornings free to take me for a run; whole summers off to travel; fall break; spring break- well you get the picture. We can finally start recreating a slightly larger dog bone budget!!! Sweet, sweet success!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Cohuttas and a Backpack

Hi, everybody. Well, I'm one tired yellow dog, but I've got to tell y'all about our latest adventure while the Food Guy's taking a break from catching up on work and cleaning some gear. He's been tapping away at the keyboard since we got home this afternoon, but now that he's cleaning the stove and our water filter I'll fill you all in on our latest trip. We left Athens on Monday morning and rolled over to the ATL to pick up Lisa (aka the treat lady/the Food Guy's girlfriend) and then we cruised up 75 North to our favorite place: The Conasauga River Trail. We parked at Betty Gap and walked along the Conasauga River for a few hours before we stopped to make camp for the night.

We took a couple of breaks along the way to stop and enjoy the view. It was a great walk, and we crossed the river 50, yes 50!, times. It was so cool!

I was wearing my pack, so I didn't run around the trail very much. I was in working mode, you see. I had to conserve my energy. So, mostly I just walked along with the Food Guy and the Treat Lady. I stayed right with them all day long. Once we got to camp the first night, I ran around smelling things and checking the place out while the people collected firewood and put up our mobile, mobile dog/people house. Then, we ate a little dinner and went to bed. I was pretty worn out. But that was nothing compared to the second night. Ughh!

On Tuesday morning we got up, put our packs on and hiked for a few hours to the trailhead at Panther Creek. Once we got there, we stashed out packs and hiked up to Panther Creek Falls. This place was amazing! There were some people there who had a black lab, who wasn't so smart. He was nice enough, but when he saw me he started running and almost fell off the falls. It was very scary. That's why I always stay with my people. They know how to keep me out of trouble. Check out these views on the Panther Creek Trail.

We looked at the falls for a few minutes, then we hiked back to our packs and had some food. Then, we put our packs back on, and started hiking back up the trail to the really cool campsite that we'd found in the morning. It was so pretty. You could hear the creek all night, and there was lots of cool stuff there. I was SO TIRED though. Hiking with a pack is hard work, even for a dog who goes running every day. I passed out while the the people cooked some dinner and enjoyed the pretty campsite. We were all passed out at 8:30. Yup, that's right 8:30. It wasn't even really dark yet.

We saw so many cool things on our trip. Check out this Rhodie growing on a rock:

The Cohuttas are the coolest place. I'm glad there aren't too far from our house in Boone. I hope we come back here a lot! Well, I'm tired and my paws are worn out from all the adventuring the last 3 days. You can be sure we have lots of adventures coming up. Food Guy defends his dissertation on Tuesday, and then we'll have even more time to go out and see stuff. We are planning to go back to the Cohuttas a few more times before we move to Boone, so stay tuned for more tails (ha ha) from our trips.