Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Corrine's Tour Divide - Two Year Anniversary

Facebook reminded Corrine that two years ago today she finished the Tour Divide, a 2,700-mile bikepacking race from Banff, Canada, to Antelope Wells, New Mexico, on the U.S.-Mexico border. In honor of that anniversary, here's a rerun of an article Corrine wrote that ran in the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner on August 12, 2018.

Asking the Right Question for 2,700 Miles
By Corrine Leistikow

“I quit,” I said to myself, sobbing. “This is too hard. I don’t care anymore. I’m done.”  

I dug out my cell phone to call my husband. I was less than 250 miles from the finish of a 2,700-mile mountain bike race. I had already made it through snow, rain, high mountain passes, and headwinds, but today I was quitting. 

I didn’t care that I was so close. Or that I would disappoint friends who were cheering me from afar. I was hot and tired. I had fought strong headwinds for about the millionth day in a row. I was sick of awful roads with soft washboards that made pedaling slow and difficult.

And now my neck was giving out. Again. My muscles were so fatigued I couldn’t hold my head up fully. I couldn’t keep riding like this. Crying, I turned on the phone to call Eric. I didn’t care if I finished or not, I just wanted to go home.  

“No service.” 

Damn! I had seen those two words on my phone for much of the Tour Divide Mountain Bike Race. But this time was different. This time I really wanted to quit.  

Only I couldn’t. What was I going to do? I couldn’t just give up and lie down in the middle of the road. I had food and water for only one more day. I had to ride at least 40 miles to reach a paved road that might have cars on it. I had to keep going. So I did.

The Tour Divide is a 2,700-mile, self-supported mountain bike race that goes from Banff, Canada, to the border of Mexico at Antelope Wells, New Mexico. I had known about the race for years and I wanted to challenge myself to see if I was physically capable of such an endeavor. For three years I planned.  I did some shorter races, had my bad knees replaced with implants, and got the time off work. 

In early June my husband Eric and I drove from Fairbanks to the start. Then he took off to do his own thing. The Tour Divide requires racers to be self-supported, so I couldn’t rely on Eric, but I knew he would be available if I really needed him. Some racers thought having that option might make it easier to quit. But I knew I was too stubborn to quit. Until I wasn’t.

I realized the race would be hard, but it was so much harder than I ever imagined—physically, mentally, and emotionally. More days than not, I wanted to quit. When doing endurance races I have a question I ask myself when I want to quit: Am I in danger or just uncomfortable? If I’m just uncomfortable, I tell myself to keep going. Things will get better. And they usually do. But on the Tour Divide every day was hard. I was uncomfortable every day. But I was never in danger. So I would tell myself to keep going. Also, I usually had no choice, as I often didn’t have cell service to call for a rescue!

OK, I didn’t want to quit every day. The first day in the Canadian Rockies was beautiful with varied terrain from single-track to double-track to dirt roads. 

The pump-you-up start of the 2018 Tour Divide. Corrine is in a green jacket, standing middle row, middle of the photo.

The Tour Divide started gloriously! Koko Claims was yet to come. 

But by day two I was already getting my butt kicked. Going up Koko Claims was horrendous. This new section—added in 2017 when a bridge washed out on the original route—was six miles of hike-a-bike up steep rocky trails. I was already tired from the first day. I thought my arms would give out lifting my heavy bike over big rocks and snow avalanches that covered the trail. And my stomach shut down. I ended up dry heaving at least six times.  It took me five hours to go the six miles to the top. 

I tried to text Eric, who had planned to spend a day in Fernie, British Columbia, riding single track. I knew I wouldn’t be able to continue if my stomach didn’t cooperate. Pitiful, thinking about quitting on the second day, but fortunately: No service. Luckily, other racers had started a fire in a cabin at the top of Koko Claims and I was able to rest and recover. I made it another 50 miles to Fernie and got a hotel for the night. I woke the next morning to rain, but I felt better so I continued even though I couldn’t imagine continuing for 20-some more days. I decided to take it a day at a time.

Those days kept adding up. Most of the next week was cold and rainy and even snowy. (Yep, snow in June in Montana. At Red Meadow Lakes I camped in a snowstorm!) The roads were muddy. Everything on my bike, including me, was covered in a layer of mud. It wasn’t much fun, but I kept going. 

Then my neck started giving me problems. I was developing Shermer’s neck, a weakening of the neck muscles that sometimes occurs in multi-day endurance cyclists. A couple of Tour Dividers from the year before had suffered from it, forcing them to quit. I could still lift my head, but it was very difficult and my neck ached. I could barely look ahead on the downhills to see what was coming.

Corrine and fellow TDer, Michael James, on a forest service road as they near Helena. Corrine is 
lifting her head as high as she can. 

I made it to Helena, Montana, where Eric was visiting friends. I told him I didn’t think I could go on. Eric and my friend, Lynne, who had done the race in 2017, said I should take a rest day, get a massage, and see what happens. I did and after a day was able to continue. 

I rode in intermittent rain to Butte, Montana, and then had constant rain up and over the passes after Butte. The streams were raging due to the excessive rain. While crossing one I fell in, but it didn’t really matter, as I was soaking already. Was I in danger? Only if I stopped, since I would probably get hypothermic. If I kept moving I was just uncomfortable. So I kept moving. That day I rode for 12 hours with no real breaks. I finally made it to Wise River, Montana, as the rain stopped. I was able to get a cabin, dry out, and eat. It’s amazing how much better you can feel when you are warm, dry and well fed. I also met up with two other riders, Chris Ellison and Phillipa Liles from the United Kingdom, and we commiserated. They had almost quit in Butte, but after a rest day continued on, too. 

I rode on and off with Chris and Phillipa for the next couple of weeks. And the weather finally changed. Now instead of being too cold and too rainy it was too hot and too windy! Being from Alaska, I don’t do well with heat. It was over 90 degrees most days! And the winds were ALWAYS from the south, so headwinds. Every. Single. Day. I awoke earlier and earlier to ride in the calmer mornings, but the winds always picked up by late morning. I could make good mileage for half the day. But the afternoons were hell.  

Phillipa dealing with a deep rut  on the infamous Bannack Road.  It was rideable when Corrine was on it.   

Corrine enters Idaho. Canada and one state (Montana) down!

Corrine has an early, early breakfast with Chris and Phillipa at Wild Bill's B and B, 
an excellent establishment in Atlantic City, Wyoming. 

I didn’t know if I could fight hot headwinds for two more weeks. I sure didn’t want to.  When we were riding into Hartsel, Colorado, on a flat paved road we should have been riding about 20 mph, but with the ferocious headwind we were only clocking about 4 mph. Oh, and add constant traffic. No shoulder to ride on. New wildfires just north of town. I got to Hartsel and wanted to quit. Chris and Phillipa headed on to Salida. I stopped for a meal and to see if I could stay in Hartsel. No hotels. I tried to call Eric to get his opinion. No service! 

Corrine rides Ute Pass Road as she approaches Silverthorne, Colorado. 

This wildfire, seen from along Ute Pass Road, was one of several that rerouted or threatened
Corrine's Tour Divide. That's Phillipa riding ahead. 

I considered. Was I in danger? Maybe from the traffic, but the route out of Hartsel took me off the main road. If I stayed hydrated and rode more in the cooler hours I wouldn’t overheat. I had plenty of water. No, I was just uncomfortable. And sick and tired of the heat and headwinds. I headed toward Salida and camped on the open range as night fell.

The next morning I unknowingly passed Chris and Phillipa while they were sleeping. They hadn’t made it to Salida either. This was our typical pattern. I would get up earlier and get ahead, but they were faster and stronger and so would pass me sometime during the day. We would complain about the heat and the headwinds and keep riding. They would usually go a little farther than me, but I would pass them the next morning. 

Along the Tour Divide there's just not enough time for beauty sleep! 

And so I continued day after day. I kept asking myself, “Am I in danger or just uncomfortable?” No on the first. A resounding YES on the latter!  I was extremely miserable at times, but I kept going. And I got used to the conditions. Sort of. They weren’t fun, but the scenery was awesome and, hey, I was racing this awesome race. A bad day on the bike almost always beats a good day at work. Most of the time. 

Then early in New Mexico I made a wrong turn and biked five miles downhill in the wrong direction. Instead of turning around right away, I stayed the night in Abiquiu and then spent the next three days trying to catch up to Chris and Phillipa and get back on schedule. I started even earlier—around 3 a.m. instead of 4 a.m.—and rode longer.

But then my Shermer’s neck came back. And the New Mexico backroads had awful washboard. And it was still hot. And there were still headwinds. Every. Single. Day. In the middle of the Gila National Forest I decided to quit. That’s when, after a good cry, I dug out my cell phone to call Eric and…No service!

A short day-by-day account of Corrine's Tour Divide. 
About 3 minutes in is her New Mexico breakdown. 

So, I kept going eight more miles to the Beaverhead Work Station, manned by firefighters, where I was able to get water and put up my tent. I could have asked them to rescue me, but by then that seemed lame and embarrassing. Besides: Am I in danger or just uncomfortable? I had enough food and water for at least another day. Even if I had to stop every hour for 5-10 minutes to rest my neck, I could make it to Silver City, which was only 125 miles from the finish—mostly flat miles and half on pavement. I could do this even if my neck didn’t work. I was just uncomfortable – and slow.

As I camped my last night I was glad I hadn’t been able to contact my husband earlier. I knew I could make it to Silver City on my own. I figured I could rest there and then ride on to the finish.

Corrine approaches Silver City, New Mexico.

Corrine chows down in Silver City. 

But I wasn't ready to stop. After a large breakfast, I rode the remaining 145 miles to Antelope Wells. I finished the Tour Divide in 30 days, 15 hours, 26 minutes. As I closed in on the finish, I was really glad I hadn’t quit. I had accomplished so much. I believe I am the oldest woman—59 years old—to race the Tour Divide and the first Fairbanksan to finish it. 

Corrine approaches the finish, sans helmet, to relieve her tired neck muscles.

Corrine at the finish! 

But I found out I wasn’t as tough as I thought I was. I couldn’t believe how many times I wanted to bail. If I had been able to reach my husband would I have quit? I like to think that I am so stubborn that I would have gotten back on my bike after talking to him, but who knows? I’m glad I never had the chance to find out. But I also found out I am pretty darn tough. I was able to continue even when I really, really wanted to quit.

I’m really glad I had my question: “Are you in danger or just uncomfortable?” It helped me to keep going. Oh, and I’m really glad for one more thing: No service!

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Corrine the Cover Girl!

The amazing Corrine got the starring role in the July issue of Alaska Pulse Monthly, a statewide health magazine put out by Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. 

Corrine is featured as one of the many baby boomers who have gotten knee replacements, but one of the few who have got two knee replacements at the same time. The article, by Fairbanks freelance writer (and friend) David James, highlights Corrine's active lifestyle and determination in a relatively quick recovery. 

My favorite quote: "As long as I can still pee and poop in the woods, I’m happy.” 

See the full-size version of the magazine here (60MB).

See a smaller version here (7MB).


Saturday, July 4, 2020

Misadventures on our Dawn to Dusk Summer Trails Challenge

As we biked up yet another hill, we were growing frustrated. Where was the dang sign?

Then I saw one of the orange reflectors that are placed on either side of the sign to help people find them.

“There it is!”

Relieved, Eric and I biked to the top of the hill.

“Wait a minute,” Eric said. “What year does that say?”

He walked over and looked.

“It’s last year’s sign,” Eric said.

“What?! Are you sure?”

He pointed out the lettering on the sign: Summer 2019. Yep, last year’s sign. Somehow, we had passed this year’s sign and missed it. We had to backtrack and look even more carefully. We couldn’t miss it again. We were on a deadline!


The Summer and Winter Trails challenges are a great idea started by the Borough’s Parks and Rec department.  They are a great way to get people out and discover new trails in our area.  You take your picture by the trail sign on each trail and post on social media over the course of the season and then celebrate with prizes and fun at the end.  It’s become wildly popular. Last summer, Eric and I did all of the Trails Challenge trails in a day. We did it again this past winter.  So of course, we had to do it again.  It’s a tradition!
Selfie at one of the Trail signs
But this year the parks department put up 20 trail signs instead of 12 or 13. With lots of driving in between – Chena River State Recreation Area, Chena Lake Recreation Area, Twelvemile Summit, and more.  But most of the trails were bike-able, so we could move fast. Could we rise to the Challenge? Maybe a dawn-to-dusk challenge?  Sunrise would be at 3:17 AM and sunset at 12:33 AM so that would give us just over 21 hours to finish.

We spent time poring over the Trails Challenge guide. We got intel from friends who had done some of the trails already. I mapped out a route and order of trails to minimize backtracking.  Looking at driving times and trails distances, it seemed just about doable. But there would be no time for leisurely lunches or stopping. And everything had to go right for us to make it.  No mistakes.  We would have to be a well-oiled machine. We chose July 3, as I had the day off and the weather looked to be perfect - sunny skies with highs around 70 and minimal chance of afternoon thunderstorms.

Even before that day, things started going wrong.  Three days before the ride, Eric went over his handlebars landing hard on his right shoulder.  He came home from the ride cradling his arm. Uh, oh. But I checked him out and he seemed to be okay with no major damage. He was quite a bit better the next day.  With some ibuprofen on board, he felt he could ride.

We got everything ready the night before and set our alarms for 2:30 AM.  We were up and out the door by 3 AM and would have started right at sunrise except we had to go back as Eric forgot his iPhone and he is the selfie taker.  Oops. Luckily, we lost only 5 minutes.

We knew the first sign – Skarland Trail - should be between Wolverine and Ballaine roads, but we biked from Pearl Creek Elementary School all the way to Ballaine and didn’t see it.  We headed back and there it was less than a mile from where we started.  How did we miss that?  Blame it on not being quite awake yet?  We lost a bit of time, but it was still early.
1st selfie of the day at 4 AM

We had no problem with the three trails in Skyline Ridge park and then headed to Birch Hill.  We were there before 6 AM so the gate was still locked.  That added a half-mile to our route.  Still, we made quick work of those trails and headed out to the Chena River State Recreation Area.
Seen on After Hours Trail - our 2nd trail

Secret Trail - our 4th trail of the morning at 5:00 AM

The three challenge trails out this way are some of my favorites.  Angel Creek Hillside and Mastodon Creek trails are well built and maintained, perfect for biking, with lots of climbing and amazing views on a good day.  The Mike Kelly Trail is more challenging, but we could access the sign using the Compeau Trail, another great biking trail.
Biking back down the Angel Creek Hillside trail after nabbing our trail sign selfie

Fairbanks Trail Coordinator Bryant Wright told us the Mastodon Creek Trail sign had not been placed because of a bear kill near the trail at about 2 miles. However, he told us the plan was to put the sign in the first 3 miles so we figured we would ride that far if the trail was open.

A sign at the trailhead warned about the bear kill, but the trail was not closed. We made noise on the ride and didn’t see or hear any bears. But as we descended to the creek at the 3-mile mark, I heard hissing from my tire.  Dang.  A flat.  I caught up to Eric at the creek and then had to stop to change my tire.  I’m never fast at doing this, but with mosquitoes swarming and Eric patiently watching (he knows I need to get better at doing this), and with the time clock ticking, it seemed to take forever. More time lost.  Was our chance of beating the sun slipping away? FINALLY, I got it done and we had no more mishaps on our way out.
Changing a tire on the bridge on Mastodon Creek Trail

Mastodon Creek Trail

Next up was the Mike Kelly Trail.  We knew it was about 18 miles round trip to the sign. We had talked to Karen J. who had hiked the trail the week before. She thought it might be quicker for us to come in on the Compeau Trail. She said the sign was about a mile past the intersection.  More trail miles that way, but we wouldn’t have to drive the badly eroded woodcutting road to get to the Mike Kelly Trail trailhead. The Compeau is also much better for biking, so we could move faster on it.
Compeau Trail

We were positive the sign was to the west of where the Compeau meets the Mike Kelly Trail. I had even checked my Strava from times I had ridden the route in the past and thought I knew about where it was. When we got to the intersection we turned left.

The Mike Kelly Trail is tough to bike. It has a LOT of ups and down with rutted, rocky trails and even some hike-a-bike.  But the views were amazing from atop the ridge.  At the top of each hill, we thought we would see the sign, but didn’t.  We started grumbling a bit about Karen, coming up with reasons why she didn’t know what she was talking about.
Eric on the hilly Mike Kelly Trail 

Finally, 4 miles down the trail we saw the sign. Last year’s sign: Summer 2019. Ugh.

Eric had been told by Parks and Rec which tools to bring to take down the old sign. We didn’t think we would see it because the sign was too far down the Mike Kelly Trail, but Eric brought the tools, just in case.  He took the sign down and we turned back.
Eric removes last year's Mike Kelly Trail sign 

We rode up and down and up and down back the way we came, looking for but never seeing the sign.   As we approached the intersection with the Compeau, it finally dawned on us that maybe we were supposed to have turned right, not left.  Ahead was the steepest, rockiest climb we had seen on the trail to the high spot where we guessed the marker would be.  We ditched our bikes and trudged up the almost mile long hill.  And right at the top was the sign!  We were very happy and a little chagrined. (Sincere apologies, Karen. You were right! Oh, and the directions in the Trails Challenge guide are pretty clear, too. The mistake was all ours.)
Eric trudges up the steep hill sans bike to get to the aMike Kelly trail sign
We lost about two hours with that mishap.  Dawn-to-dusk looked out of reach. But we weren’t too upset. The day was gorgeous, the trails were fun. Just being out there was the main goal. We readjusted with a new goal: under 24 hours.

Still, we were not quite half done, so no time to waste.  We had done most of the longer, harder trails, so we bagged the next nine trail signs in just three hours, including driving out to Chena Lake Recreation Area and back.  (We had one mishap out there getting to the Island Trail sign.  The kayak we rented had water on the seat and Eric got his biking shorts wet.  He forgot that he had another pair of bike shorts in the car, so ended up riding in wet shorts. Unfortunately, he got saddle sores (ouch), which were uncomfortable, but thankfully didn’t slow him down.)
Chena Lake bike path

Kayaking to the Island Trail sign where Eric got a soggy butt

Eagle Trail at Tanana Lakes
Pedaling through puddles on the 100 Mile trail

We were extremely happy that the Out-and-back Trail sign atop Ester Dome wasn’t all the way down at the Equinox Marathon Turnaround. Our legs were extremely tired by this point and the less climbing, the better.  Plus, it was getting late.  The last two trails were way out the Steese Highway.  We gassed up and headed out of town at 9:30 PM.  

I was dreading the Quartz Creek Trail.  The first mile is steep and rocky. We did a lot of hike-a-bike. Once again, we were very pleasantly surprised that the trail marker was closer than we expected.  We took our picture at around midnight with the sun low in the sky.  It was beautiful there, but one more sign was calling our names.
Hike-a-bike on the Quartz Creek Trail

Biking back to the car at midnight after nabbing our selfie

Midnight coming off the Quartz Creek Trail

We drove further out to Twelvemile Summit.  A shortish 2-mile hike in and there was the last sign.  We finished at 1:35 AM, missing sunset by just an hour. The Mike Kelly Trail mishap had made the difference. Ah well. We made our 24-hour goal and while the sun had set, the colors on the horizon were outstanding. What a beautiful and amazing way to end a long day on the incredible trails in our community.  We are so lucky to have so much access to the wild lands right in our back yard. I can’t think of a better way to spend 24 hours in Fairbanks around solstice.  And to have a spouse who loves to do it as much as I do, is just amazing.  I am truly a lucky person.
Hiking to the last trail sign
1:30 AM on the Pinnell Mountain Trail

Fairbanks Summer Trails Challenge-in-a-Day Stats
Biking/hiking mileage – around 66 miles- Eric and I both each forgot to start our Garmin a couple of times, but there were pretty short segments.
Driving mileage – 385 miles
Elevation gain – around 13,000 feet
Time spent being active – 12 hours
Total time – 23 hours
As you can see, more driving than actual mileage biking.  Makes for a weird Strava!

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Straight Line to Circle

The forecast looked good for the weekend, so I decided to do another long ride. My plan was to bike to Circle, camp overnight, then bike home.  Eric was going to do a hike up Mastodon Dome and would meet me with the camping gear, so I didn’t have to carry it.  I’m such a wimp sometimes!  I thought this ride would be easier than the Manley Hot Springs Ride since it has a couple of thousand feet less elevation gain, but it wasn’t.  It actually felt a little harder.  The biking time was 30 minutes less but the overall time about the same.  Maybe it was because my legs were tired from bike commuting this week?  Maybe I was stopping more to smell the roses (literally)?  However you look at it, it’s a fairly big ride to do in one day.  155 miles with 9390 feet elevation gain.

This ride has 3 big climbs, otherwise it’s mostly rolling hills and flats.  80 miles of pavement, then 75 miles of gravel, mostly really good gravel until past Central. Not too much traffic. I didn’t see much wildlife.  One fox on the road, several grouse, including one male who puffed up his cheeks and bellowed at me before flying off and a cute little baby porcupine.
Fox on the road.  I've been seeing lots of fox this summer.

This grouse thought it was hiding by just sitting on the road!
Cute baby porcupine.  Where's your mama?

I started off early at 6 AM and made quick work of getting up the first climb to Cleary Summit. This was the climb I did 20 times on my Everest attempt.  I was slow but steady up it and kept thinking that maybe I need to come back and actually finish an Everest attempt.  I was only cold and nauseated.  I wasn’t in danger.  Maybe I could get my nutrition better fine-tuned?  I mused on that a bit. Always sounds like a good idea when you aren’t cold and tired and nauseated.
View from just over Cleary Summit

After that, it’s a nice downhill and then flat to rolling hills trending uphill. I thought about all the times I’ve ridden this part of the road in time trials and Tour of Fairbanks stage races. Lots of good memories.  I also spent a lot of time plotting how Eric and I would do the Summer Trails Challenge this year.  We started a tradition of doing them all in one day, but this year would be harder since there are 20 trails, and some involve a lot of driving to get to the trailheads.  We hope to do that challenge this next Friday, weather permitting.  I think I have it figured out how we might accomplish this goal. Stay tuned for a post about that!
Poker Flats Rocket Range

Chatanika River

Rolling hills

Once I hit the gravel, it was just a few miles up to Twelvemile Summit.  I stopped briefly, descended and then made the long climb up to Eagle Summit.   I love this area.   Above tree line, great views, lots of great hiking.  I kept noticing long stem roses along the road.   Were they markers of some sort?  Had they fallen out of somebody’s truck?  Were they marking where people had been killed on the road?  Who knows but it gave me something else to ponder over.  I picked one up and attached it to my bike for a while.  Eric had left our car at Eagle Summit for his hike, so I stopped and had a snack before continuing.  Lots of cars and people out on this gorgeous day.  I looked to see if Eric was coming down the trail (it was 3:30 and I figured he would be finishing up soon) but didn’t see him.  Then I had a very fast and fun descent all the way down to Central.
Twelvemile Summit

Views from Eagle Summit

Eagle Summit - Wind keeping the bugs down

More views from Eagle Summit

I stopped at the little store in Central, then stopped to see my patient who lives right behind the store.  As I came back from visiting her, I saw Eric who had finished his hike.  He was going to head to Circle and set up our campsite. It was only 35 miles and should be mostly downhill. I could be there in a couple of hours.
Old mining gear in Central at the museum

Those last 35 miles were the worst of the ride.  The scenery wasn’t as nice, and the road had totally degenerated with loose gravel and washboard. I kept switching sides of the road to find a good line.  There was a lot more uphill then I expected, too. And I swear, I had more cars pass me, kicking up dust, between Central and Circle than I had all the rest of the day.  What was up with that?  We found out that there were 2 funeral parties going on in Circle that night and the place was totally packed with people.  Once I finished, we decided not to camp as there really wasn’t a campground and we would probably not get any sleep with the parties going on.  The funeral explained all the roses on the road, too.  Probably somebody was carrying floral arrangements in their truck and these fell out along the way.
Not happy about the loose washboard gravel.  Ready to be done!

Nice view of Birch Creek
I made it to Circle!

After I made it to the Yukon River, we turned around and drove back to Central, hoping that maybe the store, which served food was still open.  It closes at 8 PM and we got there at 9 but they were still open, and the owners said they could make us dinner.  Score!  Hot burgers and fries instead of freeze-dried food.  They stayed open another hour and talked with us as we ate dinner.  It ends up, we know a few of the same people and had fun talking about them, the Yukon Quest and the fact that somebody bought Circle Hot Springs and wants to reopen it.  I love small towns and family run places!
Yukon  River

By the time we finished dinner, we decided to just drive the 2 hours home instead of camping somewhere.  We arrived home just after midnight, stopping for the sunset at Cleary Summit.  It was another great day to be out in the Alaska Interior.

Midnight sunset on Cleary Summit