Friday, January 11, 2008


Years ago, probably while living in New England, I remember flipping through a running catalog and finding an ad for running crampons. I laughed at the idea. How silly is that? Who needs crampons for running? I'd run in the snow several times without a problem. I imagined the product was thought up by some uber cautious, OSHA loving nut who outfitted his kids in floaties for bath time. Crampons were for mountaineering! I figured the product would live a short life.

Fast forward to Christmastime of 2007. Imagine me heading, cockily, out for a run in the snow. See me slipping and sliding, inching my way on the trail like an uber cautious, OSHA loving nut, grabbing for weeds, twigs and fog to steady myself. Hear me praying loudly, "Please don't let me break a hip. Please don't let me break a hip." Now, behold my new purchase - running crampons:

You see, it's not the snow here that is a problem - it's the ice. Just yesterday after all of that snow, we got a rainstorm. Oh, joyous puddles of deep, semi-frozen slush! Picking Sarah up yesterday afternoon and wading through ankle-deep slush with the occasional patch of black ice all while getting soaked by the rain proved to be some of the worst conditions I've ever experienced. Seriously. That might top the time that I nearly got blown off the side of Mt. Washington by 80 mph winds in a winter storm - while wearing crampons.

Of course, it froze last night. Guess what that gave us this morning. Shiny, shiny ice.

When we first moved here, the locals kept saying things like, "It's almost time to get my studs on.", "Got your studs on yet?" and "I'll probably get my studs on this weekend." I chuckled and figured it was some funny Oregonian male talk. Turns out getting your "studs on" is not nearly as interesting as I thought. It just refers to putting on the other form of traction that we've found to be a necessity, trust me - not optional, studded snow tires. Studded snow tires are just like regular tires but with spikes - driving crampons, if you will.

All of this wild weather hasn't worn me yet. I'm still loving all of the outdoor adventures. And hungry to get out for some more.

"If you are going to walk on thin ice, you might as well dance." - Unknown


At 6:36 AM, Blogger QT said...

I have not run outside in a few months - my running trail becomes a snowmobile trail in the winter. :(


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