Training for the Summer Adventures or How I Learned to Accept and Deal with the Heat

Pretty sure it’s my 24thish year here in Phoenix, Az. I’ve always tried to be active year round, there’s a certain time of year that requires an early morning start, but it’s never actually cold and rarely rainy enough to delay something more than a day. But it does get hot, in August when you get up at 4:30am to be on the bike at first light and walk outside and it’s in the mid-90s you might curse. If you want to recreate outside all year, you have to be out there as it gets hot, acclimating to the temps as the summer progresses, and you still need to be careful!

For me the keys to successful summer training are:

  • Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate – Drink lots water – kind of a no brainer but it needs to start the day before, you can’t really catch yourself up if you start with a deficit. Include Nunn Tablets or the like, you need those electrolytes.
  • Get up early – even if your conditioned for the heat, it’s best to get it done before it gets to be 112!
  • Accept that fact that some days just aren’t your days and know when to slow it down, or call it, there’s always tomorrow.
  • Do things you enjoy – there might be some suffering, it’ll be better if you really like the activity.
  • And of course accept the fact that’s going to be HOT and there will be sweating!

It’s just starting to warm up here, getting into the low 100s everyday, I’ve been getting out regularly for at least a month, and have felt good so far. I’ve getting back to a pretty good set schedule with some afternoon gym time.

  • Monday Afternoon- Swim
  • Tuesday – Rest Day
  • Wednesday – Cardio – Treadmill/Stair Stepper/ Treadmill
  • Thursday – Strength
  • Friday – Rest Day
  • Saturday – Hike or Bike
  • Sunday – Hike or Bike

For hiking fitness I’m using the hike that has gotten me up and down the Grand Canyon 4 times and to the top of Mt. Whitney. The Pyramid Hike is 4.2 miles to the top and back, you can also continue on and circumnavigate that area of South Mountain Park, going 7,8,10, or 12 miles. The first climb gains almost 1000ft of elevation and is an almost constant climb.

Pyramid Hike, South Mountain Park

Overall I think I’m on a good track. I feel like I could do the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne hike right now, and really I’m training for the September Challenge, and there’s a lot of work to do to get ready for that! The next few weeks will be critical in heat acclimation, but I know it’s always worth the early suffering!

What are your summer adventure plans?

Summer Adventure 2022 – Update

I’ve gotten most of the planning done for this summer’s adventures. There are still a couple of things up in the air, but most of the important details have been taken care of or there’s a plan to do so. Right now I’m starting to concentrate on getting in shape for this challenge, not digging too deep yet, just trying to get a solid base built.

I hiked both days this weekend, yesterday was a nice 7 miles in South Mountain Park. I love this hike, 1600ft vertical and lots of rolling hill once you get up high!

The Status of the Plans

The Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne trip is all set. Plans, permits and all reservations have been made. The only thing left to do will be buy supplies, load up and head out. The hardest part will be waiting almost 3 more months!!

The September Challenge is almost all set with an important hurdle still to get over.

  • Grand Canyon Campsite ✅
  • Whitney Portal Campsite ✅
  • Mt Whitney Day Permit ✅
  • Yosemite Valley Campsite ✅
  • Half Dome Permit ❌

I was unsuccessful in getting a Half Dome permit during the seasonal lottery, my plan is to enter the daily lottery 2 days out from the hike date, The only complication is that’s the day I’m hiking Mt Whitney, so I’ll wait until midnight and drive down the Portal road until I get service, sign-up for the lottery, drive up to the trailhead and start my hike, hike out in the afternoon and find out if I got a slot. If I don’t get that slot then my last opportunity will be permit jumping. Apparently you can hike to the base of the sub-dome and ask the rangers if there have been any open spots on permits, if there have been up you go. If anyone out there has any experience with this please hit me up! If that doesn’t work out I’ll hike around for a bit and enjoy being in Yosemite Valley!

See you on the trails!!

Summer 2022 – Looking Pretty Awesome.

I’ve been getting together the plans for this summer and the outlook for excellent adventure seems high! The first and main backpacking trip of the summer is the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne. I have never been to Yosemite and it’s been on the list for a long time. Since it’s in the middle of the crowded time I was pretty happy that this is the permit I ended up getting my hands on! We’ll be in Tuolumne, the Yosemite high country, which should be a little less crowded than the valley, To make things better I’ve got two longtime friends coming along, one I met the first day of kindergarten.

The hike is a 33 mile point to point hike that follows the Tuolumne River through an amazing looking canyon with a number of awesome waterfalls. We’re planning on 4 days and 3 nights of hiking, most of the days shouldn’t be too bad distance-wise so hopefully we’ll get some time to chill by the waterfalls and check things out! My friends are flying in and out of Vegas, so we’ll cruise through Death Valley National Park on our way back. Maybe stop by Star Wars Canyon or Badwater Basin! Really looking forward to a point to point backpack in an amazing place with good friends.

The next adventure will be a big one! It’s my friends 50th birthday the first week of September, and he reserved a group campsite right outside of Grand Canyon National Park. I’m going to drive up Friday, get the campsite set-up and chill for the evening. The next morning I’m going to wake up early and do the South Kaibab to Bright Angel Hike. I’d like to do it under 8 hours, so I’m going for fast and light mode. That puts me back at the campground in the early afternoon. I’ll hang out Saturday night and Sunday assisting my friend in his birthday celebrating.

Monday morning it’ll be time to get up and get on the road to the Whitney Portal. That’s right, I scored a day permit for Mt Whitney! I have a reserved campsite at the Whitney Portal Campground, and hope to get there and get all set up by 4pm. After that I’m going to try to sleep for a few hours and get started with the hike about midnight. I’d like to do the hike in about 12 hours, putting me back at the campsite around noon. The rest of the day will be about refueling and resting up as much as possible, while still getting a good night’s sleep.

Wednesday morning will be another morning to get up and get going because we’re headed back to Yosemite. It’s time to tick Half Dome off the list! I’ll hit the road to the Lower Pines campground as early as possible, once I get to the valley I’ll get set-up, get my permit and take in the majesty of Yosemite Valley. I hope that being there in September will take the crowds down a little compared to the height of the summer, we’ll see…

Thursday morning I’ll probably try to start hiking about 3-4am to ensure I beat the crowds and any weather. After what I think will be an amazing hike, it’ll be back to the campsite to chill the rest of the day and then head back to Phoenix Friday morning.

Permit/reservation-wise, the Grand Canyon campsite is taken care of and I don’t need a permit for a day hike. I have a Day Whitney permit and reserved campsite at Whitney Portal. The only big hurdle left is the Yosemite stuff. I find out Monday the 11th if I get a Half Dome Permit, and on the 15th I can try and make a Lower Pines Campground reservation. If I don’t get a half dome permit but am able to get a campsite I’ll probably still go and try and get a daily permit lottery slot.

I’m going to have to be pretty fit and get a little lucky with the weather, but I think I can pull this off. It’ll be fun to try, one way or another!

Photo of the Week 12/07/20

Top of Pyramid Trail, South Mountain Park -Phoenix, AZ

I’ve probably posted this view before, but it’s pretty cool and the trailhead is 10 minutes from my house!

New Bike Path!

A few years ago the main road I used to ride my bike on was torn up for a new freeway. They said a multi-use path would be built alongside the freeway, but I was skeptical.

Yesterday I got to ride on the new path and it’s pretty awesome!

I was really doing good pedaling during the spring lockdown, feeling strong! Unfortunately I allowed my return to work in early May and the Phoenix summer heat to put the kibosh on my riding (and most other fun outdoor activities).

I’m past ready to get back at it, so it was nice to get back on the bike on such a beautiful day. Did my standard start and cruised down to the new path.

Looking West

It’s wide, smooth, has some hills, and is super protected from the freeway traffic. As skeptical as I was about it existing, I have to say ADOT really hit a home run with this. I love living in the Ahwatukee area of Phoenix and this is just another great addition!

Looking East

Now there’s really no excuse not to ride, and it’s the best time of year in AZ!!

Flyover Friday

While it doesn’t have to do with the outdoors, Luke AFB and the Arizona National Guard did a flyover of Phoenix to honor health care workers and first responders and I was able to get some cool footage. Enjoy and stay safe!

Phoenix Flyover

These Strange Times

These are definitely strange times for all of us. Who knew that just a few months into 2020 there’d be toilet paper hording and quarantines! Like many restaurants, the one that I work at is closed, which gives me quite bit of time right now. There is some work stuff to, but right now it’s not a whole lot.


I tend to get cabin fever pretty quickly when trapped in the house, even two days of no activity and I’m starting to aimlessly wander around the house. The one good thing is I enjoy solo outdoor activities. I think road biking is a pretty good for keeping a social distance, as long as you ride by yourself and give others a wide berth when passing.

The new standard morning view
A little mountain biking from the house

This weekend I signed up for the Ironman VR race. Basically you have 3 days to complete a 5k run, 90k bike, and 21k run. I’ve got the time and it’s something to do. It’s been quite awhile since I’ve ridden that far, we’ll see how it goes! Did the 5k portion this morning.


I’ve also gotten in some decent hiking, with some more planned this week. We live towards one end of South Mountain Park in Phoenix, and while parts of it can get overly crowded now, I know many places to go were you barley see anyone and it’s easy to feel safe.

I want to do the complete the ridge line traverse from my Pyramid – National – Gila Loop hike on March 20th, by going over the last peak and not the pass, and I’ve got a permit for Aravaipa Canyon at the end of next week. I’ve never been there but, it’s supposed to be amazing! Just going to drive over in the morning, hike into the canyon for a few hours, then hike out. Definitely looking forward to checking out a new place!

Pyramid – National – Gila Loop

What thing are you doing to keep occupied, enjoy the outdoors, and most importantly keep yourself and loved ones safe?

Time To Get Back At It!

My major December work is finished at the restaurant! It’s always the toughest month of the year for work, which translates into a tough month to train through.

I was on a solid 6 day a week spree ,but finally succumbed to then need to just crank through some work, much needed rest, and the holidays.

The main reason I haven’t signed up for the Rock and Roll Az race in a while is the lack of training I’m usually able to get in during December. This year I got a solid early start to the training, and really by the time the weight of work took hold I feel my body was ready for the rest. The goal now is to be good at jumping right back into the training, just gotta get back to those habits quickly!

The six day a week training schedule had me feeling good:

  • Monday – Afternoon Swim (need to start getting in morning runs)
  • Tuesday – Morning Strength/Cardio
  • Wednesday – Morning Run – Afternoon Strength
  • Thursday – Morning Strength/Cardio
  • Friday – Rest
  • Saturday – Run or Ride (mtn bike or road bike)
  • Sunday – Ride or run (whichever I didn’t do the day before)

I was starting to feel pretty fit and I want to have a fun and active winter/spring before it gets hot. That is my motivation to get back at it, that and the entry fee I paid for the 1/2 marathon!

I’d like to get in at least one or two weekend backpacking trip in the next few months, I’m probably only going to be able to take 1 long backpacking trip this year, but a few short jaunts into the woods will be great!

Here’s to getting 2020 training off to a good start now! What are some tricks you use to keep up the training habits?


It started a Facebook page for Going Down The Trail, click and the button, check it out and give it a like!

Signed Up

I pulled the trigger and signed up for the Rock and Roll Arizona Half Marathon. I’ve been feeling pretty good running and wanted to go ahead and commit, so much easier to maintain motivation once you’ve paid your entry fee! I haven’t been running very fast lately, but it has felt good and I’ve been enjoying getting back to it so far.

It’s nice to have a racing goal, I’ve really slacked off on the racing the past 5-6 years. I miss it sometimes, but life sure tends to make you busy and there are a lot of varied outdoor actives I’m trying to squeeze in nowadays. If nothing else being fit for racing makes many other activities easier!

I’ve been getting in 2-3 runs per week, with a biking day, swimming day and 3 strength sessions a week.
Overall I feel pretty fit, and it’s been good to be back on track again. My bouts of the gout in early October appear to have been beaten back, that was a painful frustrating couple of weeks!.
I usually do 3ish mile runs during the week, and a longer run on the weekend. This past weekend I got in 10 miles relatively easily, and the weather was beautiful, a fine thing about AZ this time of year!

As far as a goal goes, I would love to PR (1:43;58) but I’m just not sure if I can run that fast anymore. I’ll be happy with anything under 1:50, I’ll try and do some post during this time just dedicated to the training for this race, and we’ll see how it goes!

Here’s this past weekend’s running effort!

Feel free to check in on my training, and drop some words of encouragement!

Walter the Dog in the Classy Canines Book!

While it has nothing to do with backpacking or the outdoors, my wife and are are big fans of animals!

Our dog, Walter and my wife’s parent’s dog, Chula, are raising money for the Arizona Animal Welfare League & SPCA by being dog models in their book! Your vote could help them get on the cover of the Classy Canines Book. Just enter our last name “Moore” in the box when you vote. Voting only costs a dollar, and goes to a great cause!