Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Day Full of Bagging!

The Lions from the start of the Howe Sound Crest Trail The view from St. Marks Mountain - Bowen Island below - our friends Marilyn and Ron are on the ferry to the island (to climb Mt. Gardner) - the white dot is the ferry. The top of Little Goat - Pacific Ocean below. Crown Mountain and Camel Mountain The Needles with the Seymour Range in the background. Neil on our way to Goat Mountain Almost down, the Capilano Reservoir below.

Today we set off early to Cypress to venture along the Howe Sound Crest Trail to bag a couple of Peaks. It was a cold morning the temperature was at zero as we set off. We had never been on this portion of the Howe Sound Crest Trail - we really enjoyed it and the occasional views of Howe Sound and the islands below. We came upon St. Marks Peak sooner than we thought. Incredible views from here at 4,450 feet. Since we had made such good time we decided to carry on to Unnecessary Peak. The trail steeply descended - it was in the shade and covered with ice. Yikes! After some of the scary moments yesterday I felt really frightened about going down this icy section. I convince Neil that I am turning around but being the stubborn Scot that he is he carried on to Unnecessary. The plan was that I will head back on the Howe Sound Crest Trail with a group we had just met up with that were only going as far as St. Marks. I was worried for Neil but he is much better on the ice and snow than I. The jingle "know your limits, stay within it" was running through my head. I think it is an advertisement for alcohol consumption but it seemed suitable to support my decision to not carry on to Unnecessary. I set off with the group of strangers back to return to Cypress. They were walkers and the pace was a bit slow so I carried on down the trail by myself. Lots of hikers out this Thanksgiving weekend but I didn't see any other Baggers! I was back at the car, had a coffee in the lodge and I see Neil approaching down the slope. Great timing - let's go to Grouse to bag a few in there. He said I wouldn't have liked the trail to Unnecessary especially since it was icy! We arrive at Grouse Mtn which is buzzing with people. Up the Skyride we go and head out to climb Dam, Little Goat and Goat Mountain. They were all so close together. Unfortunately it was getting later in the day and many spots were covered in ice. These lower temperatures add an entire new dimension to the climbing! At one point we lost the trail at the top of Little Goat as it was snow covered. Spectacular views and fantastic to see all the peaks we have climbed recently. A great day out bagging - a great weekend of bagging! We should really stay home tomorrow - chores and school work are calling...hmmm...

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