These were thoughts I shared in an email with my friends when we were discussing what to do about hiking on Saturday given that the forecast was to be the absolute pitts!
"I was thinking I wanted to be in the company of friends, to be thankful that I have a choice whether to even hike or not. I thought about being out on a not so nice day and how it would make me appreciate the great weather days even more. I don’t always enjoy hiking in the rain and I don’t care for gearing up in rain but lately with things that have happened I have been reminded to try and live life to the fullest and don’t take it for granted. I have gear to stay dry, what does it matter if we decide our turn around spot is before the summit, if we get soaked we will eventually dry off even if not until we get home."
I already knew that we are all passionate about being in the mountains where we can truly remember to breathe so it was no surprise that my friends were on board to go no matter what as we each know from experience that we are masters at finding the good in everything and professionals at saving the day.
We met at carpool, hopped into the vehicle, threw out options and came up with a plan. It's great to have a group that is flexible with plans. We opted for snow over rain so knew we needed to get high without loads of work. This is a rough idea of how our plan evolved.
hike up Healy
explore to the right of the Pass
what about the bus
what time is it
we could see if we can get on the 9:00
how about a one way ride & hike back down Healy Creek
let's throw in WaWa Ridge
what about Simpson Pass
let's go by Rock Isle Lake first
hope we can get on that bus
We began to execute this well laid plan! We were fortunate to get tickets for the bus and the bus did fill, we were not the only ones who were passionate and game no matter what. Our tickets were for one way and they were even discounted. Arriving up at the Village we began receiving the flurries we hoped for over rain. With the low cloud cover and the flurries, I knew it would not be a day of enjoying the far off vistas but rather appreciating what was up close especially my friends.
I looked to add some kind of color to the day.
Rock Isle Lake
We were first to lay prints on the long stretch through Meadow Park.
peering over the Continental Divide
enjoying a larch embrace on Wawa Ridge
We did not reach the summit of Wawa Ridge. Visibility was non-existent and we were concerned about the narrow rocky section just before the short climb to the summit cairn. We headed back and aimed for the junction where we would take a right and follow the trail to Simpson Pass. It was nearing noon and we needed nourishment. While dining, backpacker after backpacker after backpacker passed by. It was nice to see so many others who have found their passion.
a lake along Simpson Pass
another lake along Simpson Pass
yet another lake along Simpson Pass
A couple of times we re-confirmed we were still game to go all the way to Healy Pass.
It was work, we were quiet, we were tired but determination won out.
We reached the Pass!
at Healy Pass!
Our visit at Healy Pass was just long enough to fuel up and capture our shots. It was mid afternoon, still snowing and we had another couple of hours of hiking ahead of us to reach the Bourgeau Parking Lot at the base of Sunshine. The portion of the trail before entering the big forest was so pretty. The larch trees looked beautiful still very green and covered in brand new as white as can be snow.
Just short of nine hours after beginning our hike, we arrived back to reality and rain.
I believe we were successful in accomplishing what we wanted to make today be.
It was a fun day full of laughs
and that is how I love "out & about" days to be!
Thank you for today!