Saturday, January 23, 2010

Attacked an Outlier and Won

It appeared menacing! It came across as unapproachable! It was gigantic! It looked scary! It intimidated me! I'm not talking about some kind of animal but of North Kent Outlier! I have been on mountain tops, reached peaks, hiked along ridges and even stood on a col. This was my first attempt at an outlier. In simple terms from the dictionary, an outlier is something (as a geological feature) that is situated away from or classed differently from a main or related body. This is it! The star marks North Kent Outlier, our destination for today.

We snowshoed for the first portion of the trek.  Once out of the trees and onto the wide open space, we dropped the snowshoes and put on our traction devices.  These suited the conditions of lightly snow covered loose rock slabs.  This is the closest I have ever been to a cornice. In simple terms from the dictionary, a cornice is a horizontal molded projection that crowns or completes a building or wall. When it comes to winter in the mountains, the snow is the projection over the edge. What a learning experience today was! This is as close to the edge as one should go. At one point along the route, we could see the fracture line in the snow of where the mountain ended.

The distance to the summit was only 3.3 kilometers over 741 meters. Such a steep ascent was another first for me. Our average pace ascending was 1.3 km/hr. Scrambled Legs led us to a perfect dining spot on the summit which we reached after 2 1/2 hours.  I admire all my friends' mountain knowledge and skills.  We spent some time here enjoying lunch, the scenery and taking photos.

We had blue sky, at times, we had crystal-like snow falling that sparked and even when there was total cloud cover, the view was still amazing. All these conditions made for great photo opportunities.

This was another graduation day for me! I graduated when I went to serious Stynger hiking boots and when I didn't cry after falling down Tent Ridge. I only whispered "I'm nervous" once today. I asked for a spotter on the way down but didn't need one. As you can tell from all my photos, this Outlier was all show! It didn't beat me! I beat it and I won! My summit shot is my proof and I'm smiling!

I need to have a little more faith and confidence and not second guess. My original intention was to pass on even attempting something like this. Adventure Designer seems to be in tune to my limits more than I am and I'm thankful for being encouraged to come along. Today was an Everest for me and when we reached that North Kent Outlier Summit, I felt like I was "on top of the world!"


  1. Whoa. and WOW. I get dizzy just looking at the top of that outlier (I didn't know that word before either). And the pic of you near the cornice makes me want to shout "Stay back!"

    What an experience!

  2. Hi! I have just started to follow your blog and love to read about your hiking adventures. What proram do you use to create the elevation profile? My husband has a Garmin GPS unit and I need to learn how to use it. We try to hike sections of the PCT every weekend when we can. We love to hike and backpack. You take amazing pictures! Thanks!

  3. Wow, amazing!! Congratulations on your amazing ascent!!

  4. Congratulations on your personal Everest! Great pictures - as always!


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