Steamboat Springs

Just returned from a super-fun weekend in a little town in the mountains northwest of Boulder (about a 3 hour drive) called Steamboat Springs.  I have been there a couple times before, but it’s been a while.  I travelled with my good friend and training partner Lauren Chiodini, and her boyfriend Adam Bordeman, who was running the Steamboat Marathon on Sunday.  I am rarely a spectator (I’m always the one requiring the attention/assistance and having the pre-race checklist…it’s good to be on the other end of it sometimes…though I was reminded of how scattered I am at spectating!).  Lauren and I have a Half-Ironman race in Kansas next weekend, so although this time it wasn’t all about us, of course we did our fair share of commanding the schedule.  (You’re so patient, Adam..thanks :)

We rode a fantastic bike route on Saturday that was recommended to us by one of Lauren’s friends who grew up in Steamboat.  A great thing, albeit a challenging thing, about Steamboat Springs and its surrounding territories is that it’s not flat.  There are rolling hills EVERYWHERE, and when I say rolling, I mean it’s not like you’re climbing a mountain pass that lasts forever but these hills are nothing to shake a stick at (Can I just interject something – where did that saying come from and what does it mean??  Who shakes a stick at anything and why does that mean it’s significant??)  Anyway, our ride turned into more of a challenge than we had anticipated, but it was great training.  It was pretty windy, and those hills were killer.  We both felt pretty accomplished when we finally rolled back into town.

After our workouts, we cleaned up and went out to explore Steamboat a bit, ending up at a fabulous mountain tourist attraction called an “Alpine Slide”.  It’s basically like a luge course that winds down the side of a mountain.  The ever-eager tourists (in this case, Lauren and I), pay to take a chair-lift up the face of a mountain and then get on these little sled-type deals and zoom down the luge course, screaming with glee all the way down (well, screaming is optional, but of course we did that).  The whole thing lasted probably one minute or less, but it was exhilerating, and Lauren claims it was the highlight of her weekend.  I’m just glad neither of us spilled out of the slide because our coach would be pissed if either of us missed next weekend’s race due to a broken limb or severe “road rash” from an Alpine Slide mis-hap.  Whew, we were in the clear.

Sunday was Adam’s race and we were all excited about spectating and supporting, which we did, but we decided we had forgotten a few key items that would’ve made it all the more exciting and supportive for the runners (maybe not, maybe just more entertaining for us):  cowbells, tu-tus, wigs, microphones, banners.  But, we had the basics:  ourselves on bikes, our loud cheering voices, and cameras.  I think we annoyed Adam more than we helped him, but our intentions were good.

We wrapped up Sunday with a trip to Strawberry Hot Springs, which is found just outside of Steamboat up a crazy-bumpy dirt road.  Willingness to withstand this pot-holed road (including some flooding) and $10 gets you an absolutely beautiful setting with natural hot springs that come out of the side of a mountain and mingle with a rushing river of freezing water (just-barely melted snow).  Several pools are formed of varying temperatures, and we amused ourselves by jumping in and out of the freezing-cold river and into the hot pools.  It was incredibly refreshing, relaxing, and a lot of fun.

In conclusion, Well-done to Adam and the completion of his first marathon (not the easiest course on which to try your first marathon, either!!); Thank you to Lauren for her enthusiasm in EVERYTHING and for cracking me up all weekend long, and Thank-You for her friends Hannah and Tina who hosted us and tour-guided us around their beautiful little hometown, Steamboat Springs.  By the way, I learned that a lot of cool things have come out of this little place, such as SmartWool, Honey Stingers brand nutrition, quite a few Olympians, and …the almighty Alpine Slide.

Training Ride in Steamboat

Ready to Ride!

Is this a rolling hill??

Going up to the Alpine Slide adventure..Somebody's excited!!

o enthusiastic marathon spectators
awberry Hot Springs – ahhhhhh!
Lauren, Whit, and Hannah at the hot springs

Adam running the gorgeous and challenging Steamboat Marathon

3 Responses to “Steamboat Springs”

  1. Meghan Hildebrand says:

    love your website Whit….so fun to see pics and hear all about things! xoxo

  2. Jonathan says:

    Post some more pics of the girls at Hot Springs. Kidding. You look fitter than Lucas described you. Can’t wait to meet you and also get my ass kicked by you in July. Heck, you kicked it in KY already. Good luck in training.

    • admin says:

      Jonathon, I have to keep my readers interested and therefore dole out the hottie bathing suit pics sparingly. Thanks for the compliment, though. I look forward to meeting you, too, whoever’s ass is going to get kicked. All the best to you in your training and racing as well! -Whitney