Month: August 2011

Officially my most favorite breakfast. Ever.

Eating a whole-foods, plant-based diet often means we choose to forgo enjoying some great-tasting foods (boeuf bourguignon, anyone?). Other times, our way of eating leads me to a dish that is so amazingly awesomely good that basically I could eat it every day for the rest of my life and never, ever, tire of it. Really. Never.

Let me count the virtues of the breakfast marvel we discovered this week, starting with the flavor. It’s creamy without being fattening, lightly fruit sweetened, ever so slightly tangy, and full of soft oaty goodness. Then there’s the a.m. prep time – VIRTUALLY ZILCH! That’s right, all you have to do is stumble into your kitchen, open the fridge, and eat. All the time you saved not making breakfast in the morning can now be used to savor a second cup of coffee or tea while gazing out the window at the morning rainbow. What?! You don’t see a rainbows every morning? Clearly, you have not eaten what I am about ready to share with you.

That’s right; this isn’t some big tease. Nope! Call me generous, because I’m going to give you the recipe so you can have breakfast bliss every day your heart desires. Just don’t call me if there’s a run on canned pineapple and oats at your local grocery store.

Overnight Pineapple Oats
Serves 2

1 cup rolled oats (not instant)
1/2 cup crushed pineapple
3/4 cup unsweetened soy milk
1 banana (or 1 cup of other chopped fruit)
1/4 cup chopped nuts
raisins or other dried fruit (optional)

The night before, combine the oats, pineapple and soy milk in a bowl and put it in the fridge. In the morning, top with the chopped fruit and nuts. Bon appetit!

Per Serving: 382 Calories; 14g Fat (31.0% calories from fat); 13g Protein; 56g Carbohydrate; 9g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 16mg Sodium.  

You don’t have to die to get to heaven

Pickets Range


My friend John has a mild obsession with the Pickets Range; he’s made multiple trips there and will likely go back again someday. So when he emailed to say he and Gary were headed up Trappers Peak in the North Cascades today, I wasn’t surprised. It has, after all, one of the most spectacular views of the Pickets from any mountain top.

I thought my ankle was up for a 10-mile, 3300’ day, so I agreed to join them. It had the double bonus of keeping me busy while Nick was at an all-day endurance mountain bike race in Olympia and helping me achieve my goal of climbing five peaks I’ve never been up this summer.

We left town around 6:15 a.m. and arrived at the TH about 2 hours later. The initial 2.5 mile hike on the old road bed was flat, a nice change from most of the peaks we climb around here that go straight up from the parking lot. I was a little slow crossing Thornton Creek on the logs (balancing on one foot on a round log is amazingly hard after spraining your ankle), but I made it without plunging into the cold water. Then it was up, up, UP! The trail was in the forest, which was particularly nice as the temperature would have been unbearable otherwise.

At about 4.5 miles, we arrived at the pass and the junction for the proper trail down to Thornton Lakes and the climbers’ boot path to the summit. We turned right and headed in the direction of the summit.

One thing is for sure: once you gain the ridge and leave the forest, you are easily rewarded with spectacular:

Another 0.8 miles and 900’ of gain and we attained the summit, where three others were enjoying themselves, including this guy with a medium format camera:

John pulled out his map of the North Cascades and a solid round of “name that peak” ensued:

Then it was picture time. Anyone who thinks they have to die to reach heaven certainly hasn’t been to the summit of Trappers Peak:

After a suitable amount of picture taking, we started our descent and arrived back at the cars two hours later. This is definitely a peak worth repeating!

A different kind of therapy

I’ve been a cranky girl lately. Too much inside ankle rehab time, not enough mountain time. So when Linsey emailed looking for a partner for a quick trip into the mountains this week, I decided that what my PT didn’t know couldn’t hurt me.

We headed out to Twisp on Monday with three peaks on our modest hit list – Star, Courtney, and Oval. We tagged Star and Courtney together. My ankle and willingness to endure mosquitoes stopped there, but Linsey went on to make it a three peak day.

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England & Isle of Man adventure – part 4

After our tour of the race course, Nick decided that he wanted to watch the first day of racing from Creg Ny Baa, a corner at the end of a long, straight downhill. Racers would be hurtling toward us off the top of the mountain at close to top speed, downshifting just before a tight right-hander.

Unfortunately, the first day of racing became the first of many days of waiting. Bad weather had riders spooked, and then hail cancelled the races that day.

Nick and I retired to the beer tent behind the bar and immersed ourselves in the camaraderie of the event. How to describe it? During the TT, everyone talks to everyone else, whether they are locals or visitors, and the talk is not always about bikes either. An air of excitement, of a common purpose abounds, that of worshipping at the altar of the greatest road race in the world. Everyone is here to see speed, derring-do, and bravery (and believe me, these racers are brave).

After a few beers and a bowl of fries, we decided to walk back to our host’s house through the fields. All went well, until we ran into a dead end. Our options were to walk back uphill to an exit on the main road or hop a barbed wire fence. It was a long way back up, so we found a suitable spot to jump the fence and leaped over a small stream. Then it was a road walk the rest of the way back.

The next day, we returned to the grandstand and were treated to some pretty awesome supersport and side car racing.

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Testing, take two

Since my ankle didn’t die on Tuesday on the way to/from Snow Lake, I figured I’d push things a little more and hike up Granite Mountain after work yesterday with my long-time climbing friend, Mike. I actually got about a 25-minute head start and hiked the whole way up rockin’ out to Reckless Kelly. Mike and two other climbers (whose names I can’t remember now) reached the fire lookout tower about 5 minutes after I got there.

We all ate a little dinner, but didn’t linger too long. The sun sets around 8:30 these days and we wanted to be closer to the trailhead than the summit when it disappeared.

The ankle was doing fine this morning. Telling my PT this may have been a mistake, however. I have never sweated so much in a rehab facility before. If I can walk tomorrow, it will be a miracle.