Shock And Awesome


Friday after work I went for a quick road ride in Draper. I felt OK for the first few minutes, then my breathing became labored and my legs had no snap. I kept going, but I felt sluggish. It was depressing to discover how much fitness I've lost. I have only myself to blame (although the weather has been particularly crappy for riding this Winter).

The previous day Kenny sent out the announcement for RAWROD TwentyTen. It's 6 weeks away.

These two events have been a good wake-up call. I'll enjoy RAWROD more if I shore up my fitness so I'm getting to work.


Saturday around noon it was raining, but Jolene and I drove to American Fork Canyon anyway to see if we could get in some cross country skiing. As we drove up, the rain turned to snow.

The snow was coming down pretty good and we were coated quickly.

There's something peaceful and magical about snowfall.

At the top of the track the snow flakes were huge and floated down slowly.

We've been seeing these bugs on the snow the last few times. What are they doing out this time of year?

It's embarrassing how quickly I forget the simple rule for enjoying Winter: get out and do something. So instead of kicking around the house and blaming the weather, this little ski successfully perked up our moods.


Watcher said...

Mystery bug = Winter Stonefly. They live as aquatic nymphs for most of their lives, them metamorphose into adults and emerge into the air to seek out mates, anytime between January and April on warm days.

KanyonKris said...

Thanks for the Winter Stonefly ID. Fascinating insects. Right now seems a bad time to get out of the stream and start crawling around on the snow. They're very easy to spot, don't fly well (at all?) and should be easy pickings for predators. But there must be some advantage to becoming adults now.

Ski Bike Junkie said...

Kris, like most aquatics, they come out of the water as adults primarily to mate. So it has probably mated and is now sitting on the snow waiting to die or be eaten.

Mayflies, another aquatic, don't have mouths as adults because they don't even eat in that phase. The nymphs rise to the surface of the water, they hatch into adults and fly away. The adults fly around until finding a mate, and then they die, typically falling back onto the water, where the carcass is usually consumed by fish.

Fish will eat aquatic insects as nymphs, while hatching, and when they're done, and there are fly patterns fishermen use to mimic all those stages for stoneflies, mayflies, as well as caddisflies..

KanyonKris said...

SBJ - Thanks for the additional info. My guess for their appearance was mating, but in my quick search I didn't read anyone say so.