Sunday, April 6, 2014

What just happened?

Right after Sara said "yes."
Since our last post in mid-February it feels like a year's worth of awesomeness has happened.  I'll start with a brief overview then regale you with the details.  In order, we concluded our February of racing with a trip to visit our siblings in Bend, OR and win a snowshoe race.  Then we came back and found out we are able to take over the company Sea Level Sucks and, to top it all off, we got engaged!  Along the way we also had a few other adventures, met some great people, and had a crazy busy month.

Sara climbing up to the proposal spot.
So now, in reverse order and probably in the correct order of importance, we got engaged! After three years I decided to ask Sara to marry me.  We went on a hike up a canyon on the side of Mt. Elden in Flagstaff and were sitting in a romantic spot looking down on all the little people in town (mostly we were hiding from the wind) and she said yes! We then waited a few days to tell people while I could get up the courage to talk to her Dad and share the news with her parents first.  Sara picked out a beautiful turquoise ring from Winter Sun in downtown Flag, which definitely fits her better than diamonds.  If you run in to her be sure to ask about it.

In other news, Sara and I are becoming majority owners of the local company Sea Level Sucks.  As you may recall SLS helped us out on our Continental Divide hike by providing shirts and hats.  After spending 80 days hiking in the same shirt I can safely say that it is a comfortable, although now quite smelly, product.  Sea Level Sucks is currently only sold in Flagstaff
Sara modeling a Sea Level Sucks shirt last fall.
stores and online, but by the end of the year we are hoping to expand that to Sedona and in a few locations out of Arizona.  We are very excited about the possible directions we can take this.  I could spend the entire blog talking about this, but I will just direct you to our website and if you have further questions please email us.

The week after we competed in the Mt Taylor Quad, we ventured up to Bend, OR to visit my brother, Gavin, and Sara's sister Megan.  We had a great visit and actually got to explore Bend some more since our visit was rushed in September.  Sara and I celebrated our birthday (we share February 25th) by completing a majority of the Bend Ale Trail with Gavin.  Sara ended up becoming a competent driver with a manual transmission by necessity after our 3rd or 4th pub stop.  We had a great time, though, sharing the day with Gavin and experiencing the Bend lifestyle.

Finishing lap one of the 10k
Our visit to Bend wasn't all play, however.  Well, actually it was.  A few days before the Ale Trail we both competed in the WillRace Snowshoe Qualifier, our first ever snowshoe race.  I had planned to compete in the 10k before we got up there, but Sara decided to run about 15 minutes before the race because it was so beautiful.  She had borrowed Megan's snowshoes to walk around and watch me run, but the shoes were actually running snowshoes so it worked out perfect.  Despite the last minute decision Sara won the 5k by at least 37 lengths of a thrown snowball.  I ran the 10k, which was a qualifying race for the US Snowshoe National Championships, and I also won by a few minutes.  I would have loved to travel to Nationals, but we didn't quite have the finances to travel to Vermont two days after a trip to Bend.  We are both very excited for next season though since Sara can surely qualify and my time puts me top 5 in the country on paper.

Last week Sara had two friends visit from LA and they were able to sneak away into the Canyon for a few days, leaving me behind.  The trip down Grandview Trail to Hance Rapid was Shannon and Herbie's first trip into the Grand Canyon and Herbie's first time ever backpacking!  They had a great time escaping the Flagstaff wind and experiencing the beauty of the Canyon.  For Sara trip was a great escape from a too busy month and a chance to have a wonderful visit with friends.

Sara has also found time to take EMT and psychology classes at the community college so is back into the student world of stressing for tests and finding time to read.  She was able to take classes only on Tuesdays though so she is still able to guide some river trips. Between now and when we leave to finish the CDT she gets to guide 5 trips, somehow fit in finals, and go up to Missoula for a visit before we officially decide to move.  Busy, busy!

Sequoia pretends he's still a lap dog.
Zeno and Sequoia update: Zeno is turning into an awesome running dog since I have been able to get him out more.  With only one or two runs a week he manages 5-7 quick miles with no issue and still wants to play when we get back.  Sequoia is not so much of a running dog.  He currently can barely walk.  His latest growth spurt has put him close to 80 pounds at 10 months old with muscles that can't keep up with his weight.  Random falling, feet sliding, and faceplants have become a common, and sadly hilarious, occurrence around the apartment.
Zeno unsure of why we stopped running.

I finally broke down and joined the world of Twitter, both for Sea Level Sucks and personal purposes.  If you would like to follow our adventures on a more regular, mundane basis follow us @sealevelsucks and @forrestboughner.  That's all until May!

Happy Trails,

Forrest and Sara

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