Saturday, August 2, 2008
7Up is good, but 8Up is hard work. We hiked 8 miles, all up, until we couldn't hike any farther. Some people refuse to eat and drink enough when they are in elevation, so they have to sit by a log and suffer. Of course, eating and drinking at any time is the cure, but some refuse to eat supper and drink Powerade. Oh well, others enjoy a gorgeous river, a peaceful campfire, a wonderful morning, great food, and of course, Powerade. The morning especially was so beautiful, alone in the wilderness, the sun beginning to creep down the edge of the mountain, the warmeth of the camp fire, a sound of the river racing past, it was a Kodak moment for sure.
Some people wonder why anyone would strap 35 pounds on their back and go walk up a mountain in wind, rain, snow, bugs, sleep on the ground, drink river water, etc. etc. There are no words to describe such an awesome experience. The people you are with, the moments shared, the man-made world has nothing to offer that produces such bonding and awe.
The water was especially cold, it was melting right out of the snow pack. It was fun to cross the rivers. We saw one group of day hikers that had two little girls and they crossed an old miners bridge that had slid out over a water fall and it was all slippery and very unstable. We had to leave because we couldn't stand to see the girls go across with probably an 100' water fall dropping beneath them.
We climbed down the Black Canyon, 1800 feet vertical to the bottom. They said it would take 1.5 hrs to get down and at least 3 hrs to get up. We made it down in 1.75 hrs and we made it up in 1.5 hrs. We couldn't believe it. It seemed easier going up than it did slipping and sliding down the loose rock. For 80' there was a chain, you had to lower yourself down the chain, part of it was over my head so I had to put my arms up in order to reach it. It was my favorite part.
It was so pretty hiking in Colorado earlier in the summer. There was so much snow. It was really pretty. The first night out it was really cold because we pitched the tent at the top of a water fall. We put on all our extra clothes and the next day it warmed up. There were lots of mosquitos too. The new JetBoil worked great except for the one really cold night.