A while ago I read about this ski mountaineer, Greg Hill, who strapped on a GPS-altimeter one day and set out to climb and ski two-million vertical feet in one year's time.
Me on the summit of Gobbler's Knob---a 4,000-foot day.
I decided to try something similar. Being a dad with a full-time job, and being only an amateur athlete, I figured 1K per day---365,000 feet in a year---seemed like a fun and doable goal. My rules: the vertical gain can be anything human powered: bike, run, ski, hike. Of course, biking is much easier to gain vertical quickly, and 1K a day on the bike could be done with minimal effort, so in the spirit of Greg Hill's feat, I've committed to doing most of it through hiking, running, and backcountry skiing, but I go on rides as well, most notably my bike tour of the Wasatch plateau where I tallied 25,000 vert in three days, but I also count my 300-foot vertical gain bike route to work and back every weekday.
In a little over two months since I bought a GPS-altimeter, I've tallied about 110,000 vertical feet, so I'm way ahead of my quota. For now. Doing a half-million in a year would be really cool, but probably not realistic. We will see.
So I spend a lot of time in the mountains. Consistently. It looks here like an inukshuk escaped Canada and decided to summit the Phiperhorn!
Most of my vertical is done on trails, but sometimes scrambling.
The Red Pine Lakes---true high country.
Not everyday is agro. In fact most days are pretty mellow. I do some road running in the hills above my house and some hikes with the kiddo on my back.
Relaxing at Desolation Lake with the Fam after casting a few flies.
Sometimes the run/hike has another goal entirely.
Too little to keep, so I keep on casting, and running....
Mostly its a good excuse to keep visiting the mountains in every season.