Sunday, November 10, 2013


Ennis, MT. fishing access.
First morning on our summer trip to the winds.
This year I had the most fantastic opportunity to be a part of  Therm-a-Rest's new 'Dreamers' program. 

Here's the blog I wrote for them. Part 1: The Bike Ride (on Therm-a-Rest's blog)

Therm-a-Rest, the leader in sleeping pad technology for the last 20-30 years, is now making sleeping bags, and integrative sleeping bag/pad systems.

I tested the Antares 20º bag; weight 1lb. 15oz.
 the NeoAir All Season pad; weight 1lb. 3oz.


More Awards!!!!

The combination of a new tent and sleeping bag/pad system 
lightened my load by over 4lbs.

Sleeping with the bag secured down to the sleeping pad, 
(with 2 flexible fabric bands,)
allowed for a more comfortable night sleep,
with less cold spots inside the bag,
 and more freedom to move.

Making for a warmer and more comfortable night out, 
with less weight.
Yes it won outdoor industry awards,,, again!

Just make sure you wake up on the right side of the sign.
(And look at the thickness of that sleeping pad!)

And, how do I say thank you enough, 
the 'Live Your Dream' grant for helping support
our 2013 human-powered expedition to the Wind Rivers
& the Tetons…!
Big Love,
From team Sweet-Bangs 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Beartooth Bust

Hello Friends,

I made this for you. 

For you to laugh at,
wonder about,
and feel inspired by.

I hope you like it!

p.s. Spending a week in the rainy tent w/ vertigo sucked!

But somehow Gillian Welch (soundtrack) makes it all better.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Crazy Peak Montana

posted by Chris Bangs

The final attempt in my latest and greatest project. 

Crazy Peak...!

One of the hardest things on these adventures is knowing how to pace myself.
And how much TIME I'll need to complete a climb.

Last day of the 'Kick My Own Ass' project...
Last week was a good example of the difficulty in pulling off a human-powered
adventure on a limited amount of time.

The bicycle ride into the Crazy's proved to be a lot more challenging than I had hoped for.

The 90 mile bike ride from my house to the trailhead was dripping with sweat.
The 90º+ temperatures and humidity from the thunderstorms
added to my misery.
(I already miss winter!)

Crazy Peak on far left.
The final leg of the ride was up a dirt road for 15 miles with no shade in the unbearable heat.

And for anybody who hasn't towed a heavy bike trailer up a dirt road....
Well let's just say, IT AIN'T EASY!!!!

If I ever wonder why more people are not jumping on this "band wagon to freedom," 
I realize that this is my answer.

It ain't easy,
and only fools like myself find the 
freedom in hardship.

and Crazy Peak skunked me....!

She skunked me so hard I'm bashful about it.

I got to the trail head, with only one day planned for the climb and ski.

I knew the approach to the climb was supposed to be tough,
but once I got there and looked at it....

I actually said "SHIT, THAT SUCKS!"

The plan for the climb (with my limited amount of time)
was to make the approach at night,
but that would have me
bushwhacking up a mountain side for 5-6 miles in the dark,
by myself,
in a place I've never been before.

To change my plan would have required me to ride 26 miles back to Big Timber,
call Justene and tell her my new plan,
buy more food,
and then ride 26 miles back up that boiling hot hill.

I may be crazy,
but call me stupid and I'll shove a case of
HOSER BEER down your throat.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Beartooths, Granite Peak, & Five Nights Of Vertigo

Posted by Chris Bangs

North Face Granite Peak
Some where in my altered state,
sleeping for 5 nights with vertigo,
rationing handfuls of food for days,

I might not know where I am,
but I'm not lost,
and that.....
That's not Granite Peak...!"

And really,,,, that's where the story begins and ends.

I rode my bicycle,,,
(again, I know, right?!)

150 miles to the Beartooth Mountains.
Home of Granite Peak, 12,807 ft.
(the highest peak in Montana)

There I was hoping to climb and ski
the Notch Couloir on the north face (!)...

I spent days in the rain.
(Going crazy in my tent)

The bicycle riding sucked!
Getting sprayed
by semi-trucks on the highway.

Pouring water out of my riding boots.
Camping with the wet smell of  myself...

Then the vertigo kicked in...!

And I looked like this hoser here...
Strung out on calories,
and looking for a good time.
("Hey babe!
You look like a sexy Mountain!")

The Map

Days earlier I left the map (!) with a friend by accident.
Now I was spinning around with vertigo,
camera in hand,
taking pictures of mountains that I had
no idea about.

Which mountain is this?
Which mountain is that?

Five days later, after being home in Bozeman.
Google Earth is kind enough to tell me,
that was Granite Peak.

I was right there!
If only I would have turned around,
and looked up!

Possible 5 toes, (wolverine?)
Whatever it was, there were multiple tracks playing in the snow.
And an obvious wolf track that I followed for 2 miles.

Schlep broken down completely and stuffed into a small car.

Even a week later, I hate this photo!!!!

Durring the bike ride back to Bozeman,
the vertigo tag teamed me with some heavy hitting virus,
and I  lost control of reality for a few hours.

The sunset came that night
as I lay spun out in my tent.

On day number ten of this strange adventure,
I was faced with
non-stop rain on a busy highway,
fighting the vertigo and this bitch virus,
 the terrible thought of putting Schlep in a car
for 50 miles...

Which is worse?

Climb for a cause!!!!!
Please support ( $$,$$$ )
My Peak Over Poverty
"Seven Summit of Bozeman" project.

Your contributions make this possible...!

Even the smallest donations add up, so
please dip into the weekly beer fund.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Beartooth Vegan

Making instant camper-friendly Power Foods for covering long distances. 

Posted by Chris Bangs

This week I am making instant backpacker superfood meals for my next trip to ski Granite Peak in the Beartooth Mountains.

Granite Peak is the highest peak in Montana at 12, 807 feet.

It is approximately a 146 mile bicycle ride to the West Rosebud Trailhead from my house, and
bushwhacking up a creek is listed in the route description.

Sounds like a lot of fun!!!!!!

Here's what I'm making for high grade, premium endurance fuel. It's sprouted, raw, tastes amazing, and it's on the go instant organic food!!!!!!

Start with Soaking:

I started with
almonds, buckwheat,
 pumpkin seeds, quinoa, garbonzo bean,
 lentils, and sunflower seeds.

Just soak things in water for a day, 
or for 24 hours.

Soaking beans, seeds, and nuts.  
Next step: Germination 

Drain off the water, and set up for germination. 
There are many methods for germinating.

Here I have garbonzo beans sitting on a baking dish (cover with towel.)
Lentils in a large bowl (cover with towel.)
Quinoa in mason jars with lid off.
Buckwheat (on the far left) in a mason jar tied with 
cheese cloth, and draining into bowl.

Takes about 12-24 hours to germinate.

Rinse 1 to 3 times a day while germinating.
Do not let foods dry out.
Look for little tails to start growing.
Edible at any time.

After soaking,  let germinate for 1-3 days.


Once all nuts, seeds, and beans grow little tails it's time to dry them.

Place items in dehydrator,
and set temperature to 115º fahrenheit. 

Keeping temperature below 115º will ensure the raw quality of the live foods!!!

Dry for 6-10 hours.

Once sprouted, dry in dehydrator. 

Breakfast Cereal

Spouted Buckwheat
Hemp Seed
Chia Seed
Spouted Pumkin Seed
Spouted Sunflower Seed
Golden Berries

Sweeten with other dried fruits or lots more raisins. Tastes great hot or cold. Especially good with Almond Milk!!!!! 

Allow the chia seeds to soak for 10 minutes prior to eating. No cooking necessary.

Dinner Flour Soups

Vitamix has an optional blade made for making flour.
Here I made spouted red lentil flour.
After turning lentils, garbanzos, and quinoa into flour, I divided the flours up into 5 different store bought soup mixtures.


Corn Chowder
Refried Bean
Thai peanut bulgar
Split Pea
Corn bean thai pea mix.

Add veggie bouillon to flavour.

By adding the sprouted bean flours to the pre-made soup mixed I am increasing the amount of protein to my dinner with high grade, super nutritious, organic, raw, and instant,,,,, superfoods!!!!!

Sponsored by:
(Fueled by:)

 Yerba Mate Energizing Tea
I love yerba mate. It has just the right amount of caffeine and helps alkalize the body.
Try Mocha Mint, Lemon Ginger flavoured Mate.
Available in tea bags, great for camping!!!!

Soup mixes, dried fruit, and Yerba Mate!!!!!
Coconut Water Powder
A great way to drink coconut water in the backcountry. 
Great as an everyday sports mix too!!!

Coconut Water gets in where the action is!!!!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Hilgard Peak;

posted by Chris Bangs

Wet Slides,
Turn Around Times
and Alarm Clocks......

What does this have to with a bike, a pair of skis, one pink sled, and Yellowstone National Park?

An adventure?????? Maybe.

Most of the time I don't really know what I'm doing.... I just trust in the process of life to figure it out for me.

-The trying-
-The failed attempts-
-The gentle urges to keep going-
-To keeping pushing up against the tread of rational thoughts-

How flipping cool is it to ride by a herd of Bison on the road; to look in the eyes of the largest land mammal of North America?

The keeper of the plains,
The cornerstone of a continent's eco-system,
The holders of wisdom and knowledge,

I can see the brutal past in their eyes,
Covered with a layer of forgiveness,
And the sacred journey we all must share,,,,,,, into the future.

I want to stop and pet them, and tell them that I love them;
but they're big, and they have horns,
and they don't need me to coddle them.

So I keep going.....

So many thoughts go through my head on a 100 mile bicycle ride........

May 3rd;
Jump on my bicycle that weighs about 150 lbs with the trailer and the gear.
AND RIDE!!!!!!!!

102 miles in 14 hours

Though the dangerous Gallatin Canyon at dawn,
Climbing gently for the first 90 miles all the way to West Yellowstone and Hebgen Lake.

Spinning wheels,
Wet, sweaty, and cold.

Mild hallucinations,

And where did it get me?
Physically, mentally, spiritually!!!!!!

It brought me to a place of pain and struggle,
A place that smells of courage and fear.

A place where it's cold and the wreckage of winter glows in the daylight.

A place where my mind and body suffer,
and my spirit soars!!!!!

This is the place where I find myself dreaming awake.

Like I've written the story myself,
and invented the world.

This is the place that bring to me a feeling of awe,
Where everything is magical,
And if my alarm clock would just go off on time........

I'd live to see the adventure through.

But not all things are meant to be.

Some things are only a possible future,
and failure happens whether you like it or not.

  • skis
  • ice axes (2)
  • crampons
  • rope
      √ Check!!!!!

This was as close as I got to the peak. A long look across the valley to the beautiful Hilgard, highest peak in the Madison's.
Highest peak in Montana outside of the Beartooth's.

Dangerous snow conditions prevented me from skiing into this basin, and claiming this peak as my prize.

This is what I'd have to live with;

The failure of an idea,
The benefit of having dreamed,
The accomplishment of trying,
And the spark of life igniting inside me!!!!!!

This is what peace looks like!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Fund The Change

posted by Chris Bangs

has just signed up with
(this is awesome stuff here)

 Hollowtop Peak, Tobacco Root Mountains

This winter and spring it has been my goal to climb and ski the highest peak in the each of the major mountain ranges that surround my home in Bozeman.

Big deal right? Anyone could do that....... Duh.

Now throw in a bicycle, get rid of the automobile, and raise money for two charity networks and we're getting somewhere.

I'm attempting to climb and ski completely human-powered by riding my bicycle to the trailheads instead of driving a car. And I'm raising money to support a healthier world for us all to live in!

It's taken a while to work up to winter ski mountaineering supported by a bicycle, but this year I pulled off 4 attempts in bitterly cold temps. Riding 450 miles. Enduring temperature of -20º below zero, and loving the beJesus out of every minute of it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I'm raising money to support our BIKE TO FARM network, and our School Slide Show Series.

I'm doing this because food, health, children, and our future really matter. It matters to everyone, and everyone deserves to know where their food comes from, and how to support healthy communities.


Kids in this country are being fed horrible food, and 1 out of 3 kids in America are considered obese...!

That is a staggering truth.

The future of our country and our world lies in education, nutrition, and taking a stand for what is right.

"Bicycle advocacy and local organic farming are the two most effective ways to create a positive change in our world today." Chris Bangs

This is one of my messages for the kids, and the kiddos love to hear it.

School Slide Show Series


Loving the beJesus out of what I do!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Electric Ski Life (the video)

Posted by Chris Bangs

Electric Peak and route 89

Being blown off the road on my bike and turned around near the top of the mountain in fowl weather conditions. This is the essence of HPM Inc. These days are the ones that challenge, making the sunny days a reward; where everything goes right, and bagging the summit is easy.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Electric Peak, #4 in the Project

[posted by Chris Bangs]

Making the most out of winter, Paradise Valley, MT.
Awesome campsite on the Yellowstone River.

Captain Hard-Hat on duty Sir!

Celebrating the end of winter and the power of manhood. Sounds like a nice thing to do, with a bit of a catchy title, eh!
That's what I thought as I looked at the weather forecast before getting on my bike for the long ride to Gardner. Don't worry though, I spilt up the 90 mile ride into two days with a long stop-over at Chico Hot Springs.
No use being in hurry, and missing out on all the fun.  Sure this is work, peddling around on a bicycle and soaking in hot springs. But it is all in the training manual; How To Be A Human-Powered Mountaineer.

Step One: Pack everything you own on a bike. √ check.
Step Two: Ignore the weather forecast. √ check.
Step Three: Kiss the Misses goodbye and lie about how many days the trip will take. √ check.
Step Four: Plan route to the nearest hot springs. √ check.
Step Five: Stay at the hot springs and tell everyone you climbed a mountain. √ check.
Steps Six and Seven have something to do with drinking beer and camping on someone's front lawn.

As you can see, the manual is an Idiots Guide to Ruffing It, and comes with a 5 page disclaimer covering personal injury claims and trespassing. But this is the cost of freedom, and the rights to manhood.

After riding for two days, these Antelope wanted to race across La Playa.

I love Bison!
Have you ever looked a Bison in the eye?
What did you see?

Me little tent is down there somewhere.
The Peak of Electric is up there, somewhere.

Add caption

The insides of Bison are less attractive and not
nearly as majestic as the real thing.
Let the Bison run free!
Bison are not allowed to roam free out of Yellowstone NP. and this is what happens to them when they do. A major bummer for them and a little eye-opening for me on this trip. I knew that this has been happening for over a hundred years, but until you meet a Bison and camp with them for multiple days, and say hi to them, and ride a bike past them, and tell them that you love them, and then come down from the mountain to see their gut piles and back-bones,,, well it's hard to imagine why? Why would 'civilized' people do such a thing?
The science and the politics behind why Bison are not allowed to roam free (like deer or elk or moose) is as false and smelly as a giant gut pile!!!!  Puke!

9,000 feet and alone. John Muir would be proud.

Wet avalanche from a few days before.

Olie the River Otter on the rocks.
Sounds like a new drink from Cancun.

Go meet Dale Sexton at Timber Trails.
Great Sale Going On Now.