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|Weather||We saw the sun!|
|Mailed to WacList||04/28/2009|
Nothing says climbing like getting up at 4:30 am! Saturday’s assault on Guye Saddle/Peak started before the birds were up as we (Mary, Cory, Christina and Adam) stuffed the Crane-mobile far passed capacity with gear, extra socks, costumes, Obama campaign signs, more food than you would ever take on an overnight trip and dry warm clothes for after the weekend. Which we all learned from Jeff T’s lament after Mt. Si are a necessity … We bounded off towards the Pass, coffee and donuts in hand, slightly sleepy but ready to go. |
We arrived at the WAC Cabin on time, greeted by more sleepy eyed students and instructors, ready for the Great Snow 1 pack explosion – all that stuff so artfully crammed in to our packs, nice and dry, tumbled out all over the slushy parking lot with greater velocity than one of the controlled avalanches over at Alpental! Really, for all those who thought I had a small pack, you should have tried to pick it up! Those forgotten sunglasses I had to borrow (thank you Kristin for the loan of your vey stylish spare shades!) really didn’t decrease the overall size and weight of my pack … it was huge! And then when the instructors started handing us more stuff to carry – really, I’m not sure larger packs have been hauled since Shackleton ran aground and had to carry dead penguins for food! (R.I.P. little friends)
The hike in was billed as a slight incline, a short scamper through the Commonwealth Basin (arrived at by the not so beaten path), and then up … really, that’s all we were told – eventually you will go up, up, up to there (imagine someone twirling their hand in the air in the general direction of Guye Peak from the parking lot) … I have to admit this description was a little daunting - especially since I was carrying the equivalent of a third grader on my back. But all in all, even with the short detours from the trail, the hike in wasn’t so bad. And the third grader in my pack didn’t make too much noise or move around all that much to increase the difficulty of the journey. Many thanks to my tent mate Liz S. for staking out some prime real estate on the saddle and getting our little snow bunker started.
Snow 1 started with a bang (really it did, we could hear the avalanche control over at the ski slopes). There were some wild rides during Ice Axe arrest (how ya feeling Manish? And for the record, Gen, I think our facial scars only make us look tougher!), more post holing than anyone wanted to deal with, a questionably stable bollard (one of our faithful instructors taught us a valuble lesson, do not rappel off a bollard after pickets have been removed EDIT: unless the snow conditions allow for it ... 3pm on a sunny day, probably not the best), beautiful vistas from the toilets, and I guess the top of Guye Peak too (thanks Pat for taking the scenic routes up), tasty pine & moss flavored water, HOT DOGS!!!, and more laughing than really should be going on when you are pushing yourself to your physical and mental limits.
Now on to the good stuff …. THE FOOD! Really instructors, I hope you appreciate all the lengths we students went to so that we could ensure your caloric intake matched your expenditures … we’d all heard the stories about home made ice cream and Dungeness crabs (how did they survive the hike in?), we knew we had to step up our game. WAC BC Class 2009 presented a truly stellar menu - Fresh crepes (savory and sweet)! A salad bar in a snow made bowl! Calzones! Sugar balls! Spam sushi! Food shaped like the Olympic rings! Spaetzle & rotokol! All served under the watchful eyes of the Temple to the Moon.
Make sure you check out all the fun pictures on Flickr! www.flickr.com