Archive for the ‘Social Event’ Category

Around the World – Day 9 – Istanbul Self Guided Tour (Part I)

Friday, May 22nd, 2015

Massive Turkish Flag
Nearing Election Day in Istanbul

Group Picture at Valens Aqueduct
At Valens Aqueduct with Errin and Dave

Group Picture Above Istanbul
Near Pierre Lotif Cafe. What an amazing view of Istanbul!

Panorama of Istanbul

On Friday, we joined up with Errin and Dave for a whirlwind tour of Istanbul. We were fortunate in that they had done their homework and lined up a super itinerary of must-do-places to see. It was our 2nd time in Istanbul, so the bucket list was not as massive as the first visit. Istanbul is a wonderful city for exploration and we were blessed with a fantastic, clear day!


Around the World – Day 7 – Seoul Food Tour and Gyeongbokgung Palace

Wednesday, May 20th, 2015

Seoul Soft Serve Ice Cream
Korean Soft Serve Ice Cream. Delicious and fun to eat!

We had heard good things about the street food in Seoul. To be on the safe side, we decided to sign up for a tour with O’ngo Food. They had several options, depending upon the desired experience, but we thought the half day walking tour sounded like fun and it was affordable.

The food tour started with a demonstration for cooking a traditional style Korean Pancake. At the tour company, there is a demonstration kitchen. It’s really nice…each table has a cooktop and lots of room to prepare food. For the foodie, it’s a great way to start a tour! After the host answered all our questions, we left to begin the walking portion. Our group had about 8 people, so it was the perfect size.

Our tour guide took us to about 6 different vendors. Some were walk in shops and some were food carts. At some point, we also walked through a huge indoor market. The guide spent a lot of time explaining the ingredients and the variations in serving and preparations. The tour ended in a restaurant, where we had a traditional Bi-Bim-Bap. By the time the tour was over, everybody was completely full.

At Gyeongbokgung Palace

Later in the afternoon, we went to Gyeongbokgung Palace for a walking tour. There was a Changing of the Guards ceremony, so we lucked out with our timing!


Rock Climbing, Self Rescue Class

Saturday, April 18th, 2015

Self Rescue Practice Day in the Rain/Snow
Instructors ready to begin self rescue session. I’m the one in the green poncho!

RMR Instruction
I’m in the red parka, “rescuing” Andy.

Andy Rescuing Clare
Here’s Andy, “rescuing” me!

On Saturday, I attended a rock climbing self rescue class, hosted by members of the Rocky Mountain Rescue. A major benefit to teaching Basic Rock Climbing School with the Colorado Mountain Club is being able to attend this whole day practice session. Prior to teaching Basic Rock Climbing, I would have to pay a guide to take me out and review these skills. Now, I get to review the skills in the setting of other rock climbing instructors without having to pay a ton of money.

Thanks to the RMR rescue guys who volunteered their time to hold this session! Every year, I retain more and more of the techniques!

Colorado Mountain Club – Hiking Navigation Class

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

CMC Boulder Map and Compass Class

On Sunday, I took a Colorado Mountain Club Hiking Navigation Class (Featuring Map and Compass skills). It had been 10 years since I had training and I thought it was time to have a refresher. Most of the mountaineering I do is out in the west, where there are expansive and uninterrupted views and generally predictable weather. It is very easy for me to gauge direction when I have such incredible line of sight, know how to make and read beautiful TOPO maps, and I avoid going out in extreme weather. However, if I suddenly had no GPS (batteries run out or the signal is degraded/non-existent) and I find myself in a heavily forested areas, or in severe weather, navigation using old fashioned map and compass techniques is essential.

Map and Compass Instructors
Hiking Navigation Instructors

The hiking navigation class offered through the CMC is very affordable. For $45, it includes 2 classroom lectures, one optional point plotting practice session, and a full day field trip. The instruction is first rate as lectures are given by experienced mountaineers to a small class size. Questions and class interaction are encouraged. Out in the field, there was a lead instructor and two assistants, so every student got personalized assistance with the exercises. I thought the class went really well and I’m glad I took the class.


Peru – Day 12 – Cusco to Lima to Denver

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

Bar Cordano Interior
Bar Cordano in Lima, Peru

Lima Government Palace and Clare
Lima Government Palace

Dennis in the Historic District
Dennis in the Historic District

On our last day in country, we flew from Cusco to Lima and then walked around Lima. After spending the afternoon and evening in Lima, we had a late night flight back to Denver. Since we had the walking tour of Lima at the start of our trip, it was even more fun to walk around and explore. We managed to find Bar Cordano, where Ernest Hemingway used to go and sampled the local favorites.