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A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 10:06 pm
by mountainsandsound
I'm in Iowa (gasp) for a few months now to be with my fiancee who is going through med school. Don't worry, she wants to go back West ASAP. I wouldn't trade this time with her for anything, but the lack of topography is a strange thing for me. I have never lived away from the Cascade range and I do miss my hikes, climbs, backpacking, and snowshoeing in the north cascades. I suppose absence makes the heart grow fonder. Anyone ever been in the same boat? And does anyone have some interesting workout suggestions for alpine climbing training? I've been trail running and weight training like a fiend. Oh yeah, for all you Cascadians, please keep posting your trip reports with good pictures. I'll be chomping at the bit by springtime.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 1:24 am
by lcarreau
mountainsandsound wrote:I'm in Iowa (gasp) for a few months now to be with my fiancee who is going through med school. Don't worry, she wants to go back West ASAP. I wouldn't trade this time with her for anything, but the lack of topography is a strange thing for me. I have never lived away from the Cascade range and I do miss my hikes, climbs, backpacking, and snowshoeing in the north cascades. I suppose absence makes the heart grow fonder. Anyone ever been in the same boat? And does anyone have some interesting workout suggestions for alpine climbing training? I've been trail running and weight training like a fiend. Oh yeah, for all you Cascadians, please keep posting your trip reports with good pictures. I'll be chomping at the bit by springtime.


Yes, I'm a native Washingtonian, and I moved from western WA to central Arizona 'bout 20 years ago.

It's not so bad. I went from moss hanging off my nose to rattlesnakes crawling up my pants. Just keep a positive outlook on life. And, keep on smiling!

8)

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:59 pm
by dan2see
I worked in Rochester MN for half a year. Not Iowa, but it's the same Corn Belt.

"New places and new faces" (with a job) introduces you to a lot of stuff. Rails-to-trails was a great way to see the country-side. Every one of the surrounding towns had some special cultural feature to celebrate. Every week-end had a jazz jam, or blues band, or other entertainment. Where else in America can you work and party with real Vikings? That's pretty cool! And you gotta participate in parades, and seasonal dances like Valentines and Halloween.

Only in southern MN can you hike on Mississippi ice and watch the bald eagles. We found hibernating crickets and bats sharing a sandstone cave. And all those miles of corn-fields have their own special charm.

Of course I missed the hills and rocks! I gotta admit, we were relieved to get back to Calgary. I was really happy about my experience, but I'm also really happy about climbing and hiking in the Rockies.

The big lesson for me was that, no matter where you go, you can always live and learn, experience and grow. Just stay active, and keep an open mind.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:04 pm
by Bob Sihler
mountainsandsound wrote:And does anyone have some interesting workout suggestions for alpine climbing training?


http://www.summitpost.org/silo-climbing-in-iowa/275020

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:47 pm
by ExcitableBoy
My wife is from Iowa. I went there once. My memory is getting hit by a truck that ran a stoplight while I was running. I spun off the fender, the guy looked at me and kept going. My wife had warned me not to give anyone the finger because they all carry guns. Good advice.

When she lived there she ice climbed in Munising (sp?) Michigan, rock climbed at Devils Lake, WI and the Black Hills (one of the Dakotas).

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:57 am
by mountainsandsound
Yeah, the problem with calling out other peoples rudeness is not knowing who has a concealed carry... I've been poking around (Des Moines) looking for ice, but it is actually not even freezing during the day yet. The trail running around the city is a big plus though. Hope you're doing better excitableboy.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:54 pm
by ExcitableBoy
Thanks so much for the well wishes. The thing about Iowa, is they do MEAT well, and cheap, in all the restaurants.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:36 pm
by peladoboton
mountainsandsound wrote:I'm in Iowa (gasp) for a few months now to be with my fiancee who is going through med school. Don't worry, she wants to go back West ASAP. I wouldn't trade this time with her for anything, but the lack of topography is a strange thing for me. I have never lived away from the Cascade range and I do miss my hikes, climbs, backpacking, and snowshoeing in the north cascades. I suppose absence makes the heart grow fonder. Anyone ever been in the same boat? And does anyone have some interesting workout suggestions for alpine climbing training? I've been trail running and weight training like a fiend. Oh yeah, for all you Cascadians, please keep posting your trip reports with good pictures. I'll be chomping at the bit by springtime.


Being from Utah and in residency right now in Iowa until June, duder I feel the pain.

The Midwest gives very good perspective and you will find every route you climb and ski you turn will be a deeper experience.

Barn Bluff in Red Wing, MN is the closest good rock, or head to Baraboo, WI for Devils Lake....you could spend weeks at that place and never feel like you were in the flatlands.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:43 am
by Arthur Digbee
As a Washingonian who has lived far too long in the Midwest . . . don't try to duplicate the Cascades, find something different to explore. Go cross-country skiing now that we have some snow!

From Iowa, it mostly takes a long drive, but -- canoe in Minnesota this spring. Go backpacking in the western plains (ND, SD, NE). Take up birdwatching along the rivers.

Or: make the flat your friend. Take up long-distance biking.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:18 am
by lcarreau
Dude, this is only a suggestion, but you could DREAM that you're back in western Washington by playin' this "youtube" video over ... and over again ..

It worked for me the first few years I lived in Arizona.


Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:53 am
by mountainsandsound
Arthur Digbee wrote: . . . don't try to duplicate the Cascades, find something different to explore.


Sage advice. Someone else said essentially the same thing to me.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 3:00 am
by mountainsandsound
lcarreau wrote:Dude, this is only a suggestion, but you could DREAM that you're back in western Washington by playin' this "youtube" video over ... and over again ..

It worked for me the first few years I lived in Arizona.



Nice. You know how people start seeing things that aren't really there because they were so used to seeing them previously? I was driving in Des Moines and looked off into the distance... somehow a nearby rooftop with just the right color and shape became a mountain in the distance for a split second. It was a strange moment.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:51 am
by aglane
mountainsandsound wrote: And does anyone have some interesting workout suggestions for alpine climbing training?


Silo already mentioned. Rock at Pictured Rocks, and if you're in the Iowa City area, close by at Kepler Palisades on the Cedar River; also Backbone State Park and a few other spots, see web listings. (From Des Moines it may be a bit leaner in possibilities.)

A fine pair of hikes in NE Iowa at the two units of Effigy Mounds nat'l monument.

It may be minimal but it's not hopeless or completely unrewarding.

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:17 am
by desainme
south about 2 states-magazine mtn in arkansas

Re: A Washingtonian in Iowa

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 5:21 am
by Bubba Suess