Winter Adventures

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Happy new year! I can't believe it's already 2018. The last few months of 2017 went by way too fast. Here are some of my favorite highlights from the rest of last year.

Mount Wire. This was mine and Izzy dog's first time up to this summit. The hike is about 4.5 miles roundtrip and offers over 2,000 feet in elevation gain. It's a quick one if you want to escape the city for a little bit. 

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Millcreek Canyon. This is a spot we frequent. Geof and I have an annual pass to Millcreek Canyon so we try to make it up there for a trail run or hike whenever we can. We like starting at the Burch Hollow trailhead and running up to Elbow Fork. For this outing, we ran up on the trail and ran back down on the snow-covered road (they close the higher gate during winter so a lot of people like to snowshoe or walk their dogs on the road behind the gate).

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Thankful 13 Half Marathon. For the past three Thanksgivings, we've ran the Thankful 13 in Lehi. This is the one race of the year that Geof and I always run together. This year the course was changed. There were a few more small hills and the course didn't overlap on itself as much as previous years. I love our tradition of turkey trotting together each Thanksgiving. I finished the race this year in 1:53:44.

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Mount Aire. This is also up in Millcreek Canyon. We did our usual run from Burch Hollow to Elbow Fork, where the trailhead for Mount Aire begins. The hike to the summit of Mount Aire is a steady climb and it was so muddy! Mount Aire is 3 miles roundtrip and almost 2,000 feet in gain. After going back down to Elbow Fork, we took the Terraces trail back to the car to make it a fun loop that ends up being 10 miles.

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Avenues Twin Peaks. This is an easy trail to get to and get above the winter inversions. Once you get to the top, you have an overlook of the whole city.

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Favorites: Winter Gear

Now that marathon training has officially begun, I wanted to share some of my favorite cold weather items that have made running in the winter so much more bearable. It's still snowy and cold in Salt Lake and I've been able to maintain running 3-4 times a week (in 20-30 degree temperatures) with the help of the gear below. 

New Balance Heat Hybrid Jacket—$180
This jacket has been a lifesaver on days where the temperature falls in the low 20s. It's lightweight, has Polartec insulation and keeps me warm while still wicking sweat. I even get too hot when I wear this sometimes, but I tend to run warmer than most. It's such a perfect winter jacket—all the warmth plus reflective details, a hood and zipper pockets!

Photo: lululemon athletica

Photo: lululemon athletica

lululemon Down For A Run Vest—$138
Sometimes you just need a layer to keep your core warm. This vest is made from wind and water-resistant fabric and retains just enough heat to keep me comfortable but not overheating. The side panels are stretchy and have slip pockets to store nutrition or gloves.

lululemon Toasty Tech Tight II—$118
These fleece lined pants are extra warm and a must-have for cold weather training. They're high-rise and have so many pockets for storage. I haven't worn these unless temperatures dip into the 20s but for that range, they've been amazing.

Yaktrax Run—$40
These are great for days where I want to trail run or if the roads are icy or snowed over. The devices slip over your regular running shoes and provide just a bit more traction when conditions aren't in your favor. They're easy to use and seem durable and secure.

Oiselle Power Stretch Mittens—$32
Described as the "it's too damn cold to run but I'm going to anyway" mittens and that description is fitting. I decided to try out a pair of mittens this year since they're supposed to keep fingers warmer than gloves. They're made form Polartec Power Stretch for high warmth and the inside is so soft and fleecy. I use these when temperatures are in the 20s.

Photo: Petzl

Photo: Petzl

Petzl Tikka R+ Headlamp—$80
I received this as a gift two holiday seasons ago and it's taken me through any night run I've been on in the past year. I admit that I love to run when the sun sets and it's so important to stay visible. This headlamp has reactive sensors, multiple light settings and is water-resistant and rechargeable.