- 2 cups Instant Mashed Potatoes
- 1/3cup Dehydrated Broccoli
- 1 tbsp Dried onion
- 1/4cup Parmesan cheese
- 1/4cup Real bacon bits (optional)
- 1 pinch Chili pepper flakes
recipe taken from www.trail.recipes
Johnston Canyon (Moose Meadows) to Ink Pots and Larry's Camp (Jo9)
Women's Intro to Backpacking
9km one way
350m elevation gain
June 24-25, 2017
The late snowpack left us changing our plans at the last minute. Originally we planned to explore a campground in Yoho National Park, but the road had yet to open. Sometimes the hardest thing with planning a trip is having the flexibility to change plans and let go of expectations.
Wanting to stay at a lower elevation we strapped on our backpacks and headed for Larry's camp (Jo9). At first glance Larry's Camp looks like it would be a zoo to get to, taking you through the throngs of tourists discovering the beauty of the Johnston Canyon. We however, were able to avoid the masses and take a side trail avoiding the canyon all together! Based on the number of cars parked alongside the road we were grateful for this opportunity.
The side trail, Moose Meadows, is a mixture of an old road bed and a hiking trail. We were grateful that it was not raining as a various sections of the trail were muddy and swampy. Bug spray was needed!
Arriving at the Ink Pots we were spoiled with all the colour. It was too beautiful to simply pass by so we took the time to enjoyed it and explore.
Continuing through the meadows past the Ink Pots and across the river. The trail ducts back into the forest. Some elevation remained to be gained, but only 3km further we came across our home for the night. Many of the ladies in the group hadn't camped in 10+ years and I was stoked to provide an opportunity for them to learn and re-experience it. After setting up camp we came together for a map and compass lesson and then it was their turn to lead the way. Heading off on an adventure the ladies were awesome, they found the right trail, identified various mountains around us, and even predicted how long it would take us to hike a short section! I was impressed!
After some laughter, games where we tried to identify a tree by touch only, and many photo opportunities our stomachs started to rumble. Armed with two different types of stoves the ladies stepped up to learn how they functioned. We ate like Kings...or should I say Queens. Soup for an appetizer, vegetable curry for the main, and vanilla pudding over cookies for desert. We did not go to bed hungry!
That night some of us found out that the temperature rating on a sleeping bag is not always accurate. The desire to get up and perform pushups to stay warm was ignored and instead all the positive things were focused on..."there are no spiders on me". Despite the lack of sleep, in the morning everyone had a smile upon their face with a coffee in hand. Some sleepy heads even had coffee in "bed".
With caffeine surging through our veins we headed off in search of a Warden's Cabin. After hiking for 45min towards Luellen Lake we decided it was time to turn around, pack up our stuff, and head back to reality. The sun was bright and the skies were blue. We really couldn't have asked for a better weekend! Thanks so much, Ladies for joining me on this awesome trip. For those continuing on to the West Coast Trail, I know you will rock it! I can't wait to get out with you all again!
Cars flying around me on 'the wrong side of the road', darkness covering the city streets, dust collecting in my lungs, my bed calling my name; my sleep deprived brain raced as it tried to process everything. 27 hours ago I stepped on a plane in Calgary, AB, now I found myself, on the opposite side of the world, in Kathmandu, Nepal.
This was my first trip outside of North America and I must admit, I was feeling a little overwhelmed. Actually, "little" is an understatement. A LOT overwhelmed. In the past I've taken pride in my ability to throw myself into something new and flourish. This was the first time I admitted to myself, and others around me, that I was struggling. Wow! That was hard to do! With this admission came a freedom to experience my surroundings and not slog through it. I was in Nepal and I wanted to remember it, not just get through it.
My friend, Jo, had been in Nepal for the past 7 weeks conducting a study for her Masters in Public Health. She was a gem, picking me up at the airport and being patient with me as I adjusted to the new time zone. After spending a day exploring the labyrinth of Kathmandu we met our guide, Jay, and set out on a 6 hour (125km) jeep ride to Arughat. The Jeep was the most expensive part of the trip, costing $165USD. There is also a local bus. With our tight schedule we chose reliability and convenience over saving money. Arriving in Soti Khola the local buses were not running. A government strike was on and no one could get petrol. Our jeep couldn't take us the final leg so we chartered a vehicle for 4000ru. What we didn't realize was that this "vehicle" WAS the local bus. WE CHARTERED THE LOCAL BUS! I have never been so embarrassed of my privilege (and my poor decision making). The locals were waving, trying to flag it down, and we drove right by them. Their faces covered with confusion; why was the bus was not stopping? I wanted to hide! It was not fun in the least, but it was a good learning experience. Getting off the bus Jo and I both looked at Jay and said...we are never doing that again!
Eight hours in, our first day was complete. My bum was sore even though I had yet to take a single step on a trail. For those familiar with the Canmore area, the roads were like driving into the Ghost Wilderness Area, an amusement park ride of it's own!
That night the heavens opened and it POURED! Rain here meant more snow up high. Before I hopped on the plane I checked the weather forecast for Manaslu and it showed a massive low pressure system moving in, it was here!
In the morning the trail was impressively dry. Hiking along a road for an hour we were finally on the "trail". Going into this trip I imagined the trail to be similar to the ones here in Canada, surrounded by wilderness, no people, and having a feeling of being cut off from the world. I was a bit off. The Manaslu trek follows the Buri Gandaki River passing through many villages along the way. This trail is essentially like the Trans Canada highway, connecting communities and people together, except the semi trucks are mules and everyone is hiking. The villages varied in size, from one family to the largest being Samagaon, with a population of ~700 people. Along the way we witnessed an odd paradox; a lot of the villages have power, wifi, cell service, and some have satellite TV, but they don't have clean drinking water and their houses are not sealed to the elements. My brain really struggled with this. The trek has yet to become popular and therefore has kept some of it's pristine feel. We were all surprised with the amount of new infrastructure being built. My recommendation is...if you want to complete this trek, do it sooner than later. It is gaining momentum
Right off the start we realized, in true Jenna fashion, we were travelling faster than we planned. It was also when our guide started to question what he got himself into. We hiked past Khorlabeshi, opting to continue on to Tatopani. We quickly discovered why it is called Tatopani. In nepalese tato = hot, pani = water. There is a hot springs here!!! Jo swore she would not hike in shorts to respect local customs; later we found ourselves in our underwear, bathing in the hot springs. I highly recommend spending the night here! There were three different buildings to choose from. It seems that more and more accommodations are being built.
I love waking up to the birds singing, it brings me such joy. Sleeping in buildings that were open to the air made it easier to hear their beautiful song. Meeting an American couple, Kit and Frankie, in Tatopani we continued on as a group. Today we we had a surprise! We met Jay's brother! Jay is from the Village of Uhiya and his brother has wonderful accommodations in Dobhan. It was fascinating to watch them interact. 4 years had past since they last saw one another. Excitement radiated from them as they embraced in a hug. Minutes passed and Jay wanted to keep the group moving. They said their goodbyes.
The trail is very rocky and has A LOT of "stairs." Meeting strings of 10+ mules was common place. And you did not want intersect them in a section of stairs! When the mules passed, stepping to the inside of the trail was a must. There've been accounts of mules pushing people off the trail and down the cliff to the river. Needless to say that particular tourist didn't make it home.
With the trail being along a cliff it was vulnerable to damage during the 2015 earthquake. Parts of it were destroyed cutting off the upstream villages for up to 6months. Using international funds, a 93m bridge was constructed, bolting it to the side of the cliff, re-establishing the connection.
Arriving in Jagat we officially entered the Manaslu Conservation Area. Jay wandered off to find the check point and show our permits. To hike this route we needed three different permits: Manaslu Conservation Area permit (you need a guide to attain this), TIMS card (Trekker Information Management System), and finally the Annapurna Conservation Area permit. All said, the permits cost around $150USD. The MCAP is $50USD for the first week and $7 USD/day afterwards. TIMS is $25USD for 15days. ACAP is also $25 USD.
Continuing on we met more and more people retreating; unable to cross Larkya La pass. We had yet to hit snow and hoped the good weather would hold out. That night we decided to crash in the village of Philim. It was a busy place, a common stopping point for those making their way back down. If you want a quieter experience, there are accommodations just before town. Another quiet option is on the way out of town, you'll find little cabins on the left.
Today was our longest day, taking over 9hrs from Philim to Ghap. As we gained elevation the landscape morphed. We found ourselves in a lush jungle. Continuing onwards we past the trail for the Tsum Valley. If I go back to this region, I want to explore this area further. Not one person spoke poorly of the area and those who ventured there were glad they took the time to do so. Just past the fork in the trail we came across an area called Nyak Phedi. If it fits into your itinerary stay here! It was a solitary building with excellent views of Tsum Valley. Beautiful!
Stopping for lunch in Deng our group voted their dal bhat the best on the trail. Dal bhat is all you can eat and thus a trekkers go to...for the first 3 days at least. The great part is that it only costs around 500ru (350ru at lower elevations and 600ru at Samagaon). Arriving in Ghap I was feeling tired, my legs were sore, and the horizontal realm was calling my name. Since arriving in Kathmandu I had been sleeping 10hrs a night. Tonight was no different. The accommodations in Ghap were newly built and we were the only ones there! Silence...bliss!
The jungle gave way to snow covered hills. We reached the freezing line at a whopping 2600m (Our destination, Larkya La pass is 5200m). This was not a good sign! After only 2 hours of hiking we reached Namrung. A full day ahead of our itinerary, and feeling tired, both Jo and I decided that we would stay here. After soaking up some sun, and contemplating all that I had experienced so far, we went off exploring. Jay took us to a Gumba. A times it is open to the public; this was not the case for us. The monks were meditating for the next year and; therefore, closed. Regardless, the energy surrounding the area was impressive, giving me goose bumps.
Here we were able to access wifi and with this luxury I had one thing on my mind...no, not that...the weather forecast. Our nice weather would soon be that of the past. They were calling for +30cm of snow!
Leading up to this trip, I read various blog post and itineraries. Some seemed aggressive, gaining over 1000m in a single day. Having only been at 3500m I was nervous about how my body would tolerate higher elevations. Therefore, Jo and I elected a more conservative plan. With the new weather report that plan was officially thrown out the window!
Nervous that we may miss our opportunity to see Manaslu; we chose to hike the same itinerary mentioned in the blogs I scoffed at. Asking Jay to see if we could have breakfast at 6:30am he looked at me in disbelief and replied with, 7am. Settling on the compromised Jo and I headed to bed. Tonight our accommodations were completely booked. The bottle neck of hikers were increasing the demand.
We reached Lho in only 3 hours. To our surprise, Lho had an amazing amount of stuff to buy; hats, gloves, microspikes, gators, they had it all...at a price. Jay asked if we wanted to stop for lunch. There was no doubt in either of our minds. We were continuing on without lunch (lunch usually took 1.5hrs). Jo and I both packed bars to eat along the way, Jay had none. The kitchen whipped up tibetan bread, he swallowed it hole, and we continued onwards.
By this time the sun was beating down on us. The snow had softened and we were post holing...or should I say, Jay was post holing...up to his mid thigh. Jo and I had the luxury of following his steps. They told us in Lho that the village of Shyala remained closed for the season. Jay was so excited when we found people there upon our arrival. "Stay here?" He asked. Nope...while the views were amazing in Shyala; Samagaon was our goal. Based on views alone I recommend staying at Shyala over Lho.
Finally, Samagaon comes into view. It stays in view...and seems to get further away. The final 45min into Samagaon were the longest of the entire trip! Arriving at the hotel we devoured a very late lunch.
The next day was a true rest day. We accomplished our goal and saw spectacular views of Manaslu. Now we could sit back and enjoy the view. That's what Jo did. With energy to burn, I couldn't sit still, and proceeded to shovel off the deck and help locals clear out their quad. A row of old men formed across the way as they watched me work. At least I provided them with ample entertainment. Some of the other trekkers ventured up to the Gompa. We attempted to make our way to Manaslu Basecamp but no one had been there yet this season and there was too much snow. After spending 2 hours post holing I was frustrated and started heading back.
That night everyone was in planning mode, discussing various options! Everyone was trying to decide if it was worth hiking further north to Samdo and attempting the pass as a group. Jo and I decided that it the weather was good in the morning we would continue on to Samdo, if it was snowing, we'd go down.
Waking at 5am, the skies were grey. It wasn't snowing so we stuck to our previous decision and started hiking. An hour in the snow started to fly. Both Jo and I had surpassed our comfort zones and elected to return to Samagaon. On the way back we expected to meet some of the other groups, but we saw no one! Returning to our hotel everyone was gathered outside debating if they would continue. Jo and I voiced that we were heading down.
It was interesting to witness the change in my demeanour once we turned around. For the entire trip we were heading into the unknown. Would we make it through the pass? That was a question we could not answer. As a person who likes to plan I found it hard to give in to that unknown and enjoy where I was. Once we turned around I felt a breath of fresh air. The condition of the pass was no longer a concern, I felt my body and my mind relax. I was finally present on the trail, no longer stuck in 'what if'. The next couples days were my most favourite as I found joy being more playful. Jay, no longer able to keep up, gave up on staying ahead of us. I skipped along, raising my arms into the wind, and enjoyed going at the pace that my body wanted. Many songs were sung and sceneries admired, but mostly, I was looking forward to coming home. Never have I felt so grateful to have my friends and family in my life, and to live in the beautiful wilderness of Canada.
To get to these communities, we had the privilege of visiting, the locals would hike 4 days! Yet, I have the luxury of walking out my back door and be at the base of the mountain. If I don't have the energy to hike the mountain in its entirety, I can drive half way up it. If I am hungry, or thirsty, I can walk 15 minutes from my house to the grocery store and make the overwhelming choice between 50 different types of drinks. If I am craving solitude, I can walk 5 minutes out my door and be surrounded by the calming forest. We are so very blessed and I didn't appreciate how amazing my home country is. I am sad to say that I took it for granted. It felt amazing to drive home to Canmore and see the wide openness and breathe in the pristine mountain air; I plan to constantly remind myself of this feeling!
I am VERY grateful that I was born in Canada!
We returned to Namrung the same day we turned around on route to Samdo. From Namrung we were able to make it back to Philim; this time staying at a quieter location. The next day we stopped in Dobhan for lunch allowing Jay to visit his brother. That night we decided to rest in Machha Khola. This left us with only a 2 hour hike back to Soti Khola where our jeep would be waiting for us.
All in all I am very glad I went on this trip. Many insights were gained. Thank you to Lok, our travel agent, for organizing everything. Jay for your amazing sense of humour and for not killing us when we took off running down the trail. And Jo, for being the amazing person you are. I am so glad we are friends!
For not falling asleep and for sticking with the entire post... You. Are. Rewarded. With...
...more info...just what you wanted, right? You were probably expecting something free...jokes on you! :)
Below is our itinerary including: morning temperatures, elevation changes, and villages we stayed in. If you have any questions please reach out. I'd be more than happy to help you out! That's what travelling is all about, right?
If you are looking for more information on the cost of the trip or other itinerary options you can check out these two blog posts by NEST adventures.
Side note: Also works well with pasta for a dinner option!
This October I decided an adventure was needed! After pondering a trip to Moab, my heart took me back home to Nova Scotia where I could satiate the desire for adventure and connecting with my family.
On a glorious fall day my mom and I decided to explore Gaff Point. Gaff Point is a great place to experience the beauty of Nova Scotia's shore line. Extending 7km you'll experience a mixture of beach, forest, and rocky shore line. The point is 124 acres of unspoiled land that separates the LaHave estuary and Hartling Bay. The trailhead starts at Hirtle Beach, just outside of the birth place of the Bluenose, Lunenburg. Here you will find a public parking lot with outhouses. The beach itself is worth the visit; however, at high tide you will be forced to walk along the uneven surface of softball sized rocks. If you are lucky, local surfers will provide ample entertainment as they ride the large waves.
After hiking 1.5km, you'll reach the end of the beach and an interpreatve sign can be seen hiding at the edge of the woods. This is where the trail starts.
Yellow blazes mark the way for the most part, however, a couple braided trails exist and can lead you astray if you are not paying attention. Stick to the most trodden trail and you won't go wrong.
This truly is a beautiful place to explore, one that my mom and I throughly enjoyed. It has such a great mixture, showing us everything from seals to sand pipers and rocky drops offs to dirt paths. The fresh ocean air is crisp against the face; however, armed with our wind breakers we stayed nice and toasty as we walked and talked while listening to the waves crashing.
In my humble opinion...this is a must do the next time you find yourself in Nova Scotia!!
recipe taken from http://www.trailcooking.com/
What an amazing weekend! I put in a big request with Mother Nature and we were rewarded with a spectacular trip! This weekend was the women's introduction to backpacking course and I hiked up to Taylor Lake with three lovely ladies. Let me tell you, they were absolute troopers!!! Two of them had never backpacked before, and they still showed up with potential snow in the forecast! Well done ladies.
Friday night we met in Canmore, went over what to pack and how to pack it, chatted about different weather sites, and even touched on map orientation! Phew...it was a busy night but we got it all covered! Afterwards the ladies were able to sit back and relax in their room at Solara Resort and Spa.
Getting to the trailhead packs were adjusted and hiking boots were put on. Hiking ~7km and 600m of elevation we arrived at the perfect time…Lunch! What a place to sit and watch the world go by! Flat and durable spots were found and tents were pitched. After laying out our sleeping bags and thermarests the map was poured over and a route was chosen to a tarn at the base of Panorama Ridge. With the completion of a group discussion the ladies headed off in the right direction and soon we were upon the tarn. Well done ladies! Watch out world, these ladies are map pros!
That evening everyone took a turn at making supper. We were treated to testing out two different types of stoves and no eyebrows were singed with lighting them! Appetites were smaller than anticipated, allowing me to live up my trail name and devouring the remaining pad thai. Jackie, however, would fight me for the remaining desert. Did you know that she only has a sense of smell for chocolate?
After lessons on layering and sleeping bags everyone enjoyed a toasty warm night sleep. We couldn’t have planned it any better and just as we retired for the evening we were lulled to sleep by the pitter-patter of rain. I love sleeping in my tent! It is like an old friend!
The next morning everyone enjoyed a wakeup call of coffee. Before heading back to our car the ladies took me over to O’Brien Lake. I have hiked up here a couple times this summer and the beauty never ceases to amaze me. WOW, is really all I have to say!
What a fantastic trip! These ladies were truly amazing! Thank you so much for joining me on such a great adventure!
Date: August 7 - August 14, 2016
Permit Info: All campgrounds, except for Og Lake and Lake Magog, can be booked through Parks Canada. Lake Og and Magog are can be booked through BC parks
Start: Vista Lake Trailhead
Finish: Mount Shark
7 days and ~110km later, our group was successful at seeing some of the most beautiful scenery the Canadian Rockies have to offer. Starting off at Vista Lake on HWY 93s and finishing at Mount Shark on Spray Lakes Road we experienced rain, random water-dwelling red bugs, grizzles, laughter and even some tears. Each morning, this group continued to impress me as they worked together to accomplish such an amazing trek.
Day 1: Vista Lake Trailhead to Shadow Lake
~15km, 1100m elevation gain, 830m elevation loss
8am all 9 of us piled into the van. Conversations were plentiful as everyone buzzed with anticipation. The weather forecast was not looking promising; however, everyone had smiles beaming across their face. Today was a bit of a grind, following the first half of 'the tour of the four lakes', we gained 1100m in elevation, crossing Arnica Ridge and Gibbons Pass. The wildflowers were in full bloom and the low lying clouds gave a intimate feel. Around 5pm we strolled into Shadow lake campground with tired legs, but with a sense of accomplishment! We pitched our spacious tents, and the guests explored the area, while myself and Natalie started on supper. The cooking area is quite a distance from the campground and equipped with a bear hang. The water source is a 'tap' and can be found behind the tent platform closest to Shadow Lake Lodge.
Day 2: Shadow Lake to Egypt Lake
~15km, 500m elevation gain, 300m elevation loss
Waking early, the clock read 5:55am. Getting an early start to the day would be the theme for this trek. Everyone was an early riser...well...as long as they had their 6L of coffee in the morning!
One of my favourite parts of getting up early is the stillness of the world. Everything is quiet and calm, waiting for the day to come. Such a great time to sit and be present!
After enjoying a bowl full of mueslix we set off on our way. Soon we arrived at Shadow Lake. The reflection on the water was breath taking. Fish could be seen swimming through the water while the surface created the perfect reflection. Group photos were taken to help keep this memory fresh.
Gaining more elevation we reached yet another lake, Haiduk Lake. We sat in the sun and ate our lunch while others braved the cool waters and went for a heart pumping dip.
Reaching Whistling Pass, our high point for the day, we were treated to views of Storm Mountain (where we started the day before) and Healy Pass (where we were headed tomorrow). Finally, our legs could relax knowing we only had to go down!
Lots of campsites were found at Egypt Lake, allowing us to keep our group together, and a beautiful flowing stream served as our water source. Some ventured off to explore the lake, resulting in a sprinting session to try and beat the rain to set up tents before everything became soaked. I believe a new world record was set for the fastest km ran in sandals!
Dinner was ate under the comfort of a tarp and fetching water was negotiated for dish duty. Isn't it amazing how it always decides to hail when one goes to fetch water?!
Day 3: Egypt Lake to Howard Douglas Lake
~19km, 630m elevation gain, 350m elevation loss
Today was a bit of a push! 19km to hike and a food drop to collect. Yamnuska, the organizing company for this trip, provided two food drops along the trail. One at Sunshine Village Ski Hill and the other at Assiniboine Lodge. We were quite grateful as it kept our packs light with only 2.5 days of food in our pack at one time.
Lots of bear evidence was seen along the trail as we hiked through vast alpine meadows. Finding ourselves tip toeing along the Alberta - British Columbia border we travelled through Simpson Pass before climbing to the top of Wawa ridge overlooking Sunshine Ski Hill. Lunch was ate, whisky was drank, and packs were reloaded with our new food...don't worry the cucumber came along too!
The newly coffee (and alcohol) fuelled hikers resulted in a sprint away from Sunshine onwards to Howard Douglas. Arriving we found a campground in need of a little TLC; tent platforms were replaced with puddles, creating a scavenger hunt for flat dry land. Again, we found ourselves cooking beneath a tarp and luck would have it that someone had left their tarp there already set up!!
Day 4: Howard Douglas Lake to Og Lake
~17km, 400m elevation gain, 600m elevation loss
Today we hiked through a bear's living room. More meadows lead us to Citadel Pass and what a surprise we had! Our group was not quiet, usually singing at the top of our lungs. This morning I was grateful for the noise! As we approached Citadel Pass a giant grizzly dashed across the meadow and out of sight. Three birds continued to give it chase and eventually we were treated to another glimpse of this beautiful animal as it crested a ridge. Needless to say the singing continued for the rest of the day!
Not long after seeing the bear we started the long descent into the Golden Valley and the unique 'Valley of the Rocks'. What a spectacular part of the trail. Huge vistas were seen as we side hilled along the trail. It was my favourite section of the trip. Finally as the day came to a close we gently ascended towards Og Lake campground. Arriving we found that all the tent platforms were taken. Finding flat space wherever we could our group set up tents and supper was made. Some decided to jump into the lake...this however, created some issues. It appeared that little red critters were living in the silt at the bottom of the lake. With swimming the silt was disturbed and little red critters were EVERYWHERE!! Given that we only had drops to treat our water, we no longer had a suitable water source!!
That night Enough water for drinking was boiled and we decided to get up the next morning WITHOUT coffee and hike the 7km to Magog Lake. Once there we would sit back and enjoy a hot breakfast and yes...over 6L of coffee :)
Day 5: Og Lake to Magog Lake
~7km, 120m elevation gain
The group got up without coffee, however, a competitive nature and adrenaline fuelled them! The RACE WAS ON!!!
With Og Lake campground well over capacity and the number of available campsites at Magog Lake unknown, people were chompin' at the bit! I stayed at the back and Natalie took off with the faster group to claim campsites. It turned out that we were not the only group to decide to get an early start and try to beat the masses. Soon another group of four were hot on our heels, in pursuit of the best tent platforms. Stepping off to the side they quickly passed us gaining on the faster part of our group. From this moment all I was told was that the faster hikers in our group took off like a bullet and basically ran the entire way to the campground. It was like a Tour De France sprint for the finish!!
The rest of the day everyone recovered from the race, lazing around in their tents, and exploring along the waters edge. To restore our glycogen we treated ourselves to cake and tea and Assiniboine Lodge. Did I mention they had cake??? Man, it was GOOD!!!
Day 6: Day Trip Around Magog Lake
Today we were spoiled! Not needing to pack up our tents we were able to sleep in and enjoy the morning. People were starting to feel the accumulative effect of our big days so we decided to break into two different groups. Nathalie took one group and toured around the different lakes in the area, while I took another group to the Nublet. After taking only 1.5hours to reach our high point we decided that we wanted more of a challenge and headed over to check out the views on Chucks Ridge.
The day started with clear blue skies but as we descended from Chucks Ridge clouds started rolling in. We decided to stick to our plan of checking out the cliff jumping along the shores of Lake Magog, but by the time we reached the rocks only two of us still had the courage. It is amazing how a cliff doesn't seem that high until you stand peering over the edge!!!
Day 7: Magog Lake to Mount Shark
~26km, 280m elevation gain, 690m elevation loss
The Milky Way and meteor showers were todays highlights. Waking at 4am we were treated to a full show. Shooting stars streaked across the dark sky and some of us were able to see the Milk Way for the first time...impressive! Hiking through the darkness we were able to reach Wonder Pass to watch the sun rise, highlighting the mountain peaks in hues of pink and red. What a majestic sight!
Finally around 9am we were rewarded for our early start as we sat down and rested our bodies eating a warm breakfast and yet again...COFFEE!!! I have never had a group that enjoyed their coffee as much as these guys!
This new found energy carried them through the wide forested trail as we continued past Bryant Creek and onwards to Mount Shark. Some other hikers were not thrilled to hear Christmas carols being sung at the top of our lungs, but it kept us entertained on the seemingly never ending trail.
Luck would have it and the motivation of hot showers (SOME of us hadn't showered for 7days) and clean clothes kept us moving at a lightning pace, meeting our van a full hour ahead of schedule.
It was a wonderful trip! Beautiful scenery coupled with an amazing group. Physical endurance was pushed but everyone held their own and thoroughly impressed me. I can't wait to guide this trek again! Thanks Yamnuska for organizing the trip and thank you to: Elizabeth, Jo, Brooke, Cintia, John, Rachel, and Yukako for signing up for this adventure! And last but not least, thank you Nathalie for your amazing help on this trek! I'd guide with you again any day!!!
Get in touch!