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In June of 2015 I was diagnosed with adenomyosis, the evil, more painful cousin and alter ego of endometriosis. For six months I was experiencing bloating, debilitating menstrual cycles, and different levels of pain–shooting pain, consistent acute pain, and dull aches. I attributed the pain to my decade of mountain biking only, not stretching enough, a car accident or two or three, and other body trauma from a life lived.

But after months of sitting in meetings with sharp pain, doubling over while teaching, and stomach-grabbing during snowboard breaks, I headed off to the ob-gyn for some answers. The dumb nurse at the first place ascertained from my enlarged, hardened uterus that I had probably had ovarian cancer and should have an ultrasound ASAP. CThe ob-gyn I finally saw allayed my cancer fears and after weeks of appointments and speculation and waiting, I was put on progestin to stop the benign enlargement. I went to pelvic physical therapy for three months to strengthen my pelvic floor so I could handle the cantaloupe that my uterus had become.

Walking was difficult. Getting out of bed required problem-solving and Chinese acrobatics. There was, during June of 2015, so much crying. From pain, from the hormonal adjustment to the progestin, from a terrible break-up of a terrible relationship, and from fear, mostly, that my life of adventure was coming to an end.

I had planned, casually and a few months before June 2015, an adventure trip to Nevada, along Highway 50. Nevada is not known as the most mountainous of the contiguous lower 48, and that’s why adventuring among its mountain island oases, as John McPhee calls them in Basin and Range, is such a treat. There’s lots of there there but there is almost no one there.

Lotsa nature and chance for swimming, hiking, biking, and camping adventures and no lines and few fees and just lots of panoramas.

A few days before takeoff, I somberly told my adventure partner: “I can barely walk. I don’t know if I can go to Nevada.” He responded cheerfully, “That’s ok. We’ll just take it easy.” Easy for me meant loading up on Tylenol and codeine for the twelve-hour drive and doing dishes. My traveling partner set up the tents and did all the literal heavy lifting while I swam, hiked, biked, camped, and natured myself better through the high desert of eastern Nevada.

 


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Tree boarding at Loveland Ski Area in mid-March

The memories function on Facebook made me realize recently that snowboarding on Thanksgiving Day had become somewhat of an unofficial annual outing for me. Back in the aughts it was one of the few days the restaurant I worked at was closed, so we all headed up to Loveland Ski Area or Copper Mountain for some early season no frills fun. There were always between half to a full dozen of us, casually swishing about the mountain, grabbing a bloody at lunch, then heading down the mountain for Turkey dinner or a long nap. (more…)


I have snowboarded and cross-country skied Eldora but never hiked it. Today was a spectacular day of fall colors, cool mist, springy, light hail, and solid friendship along the Lost Lake Trail near Nederland, Colorado.

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,900 times in 2013. If it were a cable car, it would take about 32 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.


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I would typically call New Year’s Eve amateur night. Lots of fussing over just another night. One of the best parts of any New Year’s Eve worth its volume in champagne is the viewing of puegos pyrotechnicos. To wind down our ten days in Cabo San Lucas, I and my traveling partners hit Medano Beach around 11:30Pm to catch the fireworks and ring in the New Year.

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The all-inclusive resorts that front Medano Beach were roped off, having their own party with live music, fancy, lit-up dance floors, and folks with their dancing shoes on.

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We went a little more low key, opting instead of ooing and aahing between the two sets of fireworks going off, with the banda soundtrack in the background!

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After a three-year hiatus from Mexico and surfing, it was time to get back on the ocean-horse and see if I can still paddle. We spent three hours at Zippers, a fast, mushy point break between Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo.

Above is the highlight of the day, a full ride into shore on a 10-footer. Excellent day.

Read more about SheSpoke’s surfing adventures.