“Work Hard, Play Hard” has been my mantra of late. For now, this means putting in 40-plus hours of work in four days and then taking the next three trying to put in just as much time outdoors. Luckily, I have a few good gal pals around who are more into playing than working these days, so I’ve got some willing (climbing, hiking, cycling) partners. Rocky Mountain National Park has proven to be a good stomping ground, with the new-to-me Lumpy Ridge just outside of Estes Park offering infinite climbing opportunities. Conveniently, a friend of a friend is a ranger in the park, so I somehow got invited to an amazing sushi party over the weekend at one of the ranger houses in Wild Basin. At first glance, I thought that the arrangement of homemade rolls was too artful to eat. But then I reconsidered…and dug in. The next day, we climbed at Lumpy’s The Pear with full bellies (Cece, left; Deb, right):
I’m just learning how to place trad climbing gear, and the progress feels tediously slow at times. But the shared moments with friends seem to counteract my frustrations a bit.
Taking in the summit views and giggling down shady rappels makes the effort worthwhile.