East End of Rundle, (EEOR) April 8, 2017

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Photos: Lucas_really

 

Getting out in April is hard for me as I work at an accounting firm and its personal tax time! Working all hours of the day it feels like, evenings, weekends and then some! BUT – short term pain for long term gain is what I kept telling myself. I was lucky enough to get out with my good pal FINALLY as we have never summit a mountain together.

We were supposed to head up EEOR on the Sunday but my boss suggested maybe I come in on Sunday instead of Saturday. So that is what I did and it worked out beautifully as Saturday was sunny, stunning and just perfect. Sunday was cold, snowy/rainy and not so appealing.

As all my hikes start off – early morning drive through coffee and breakfast and a nice drive out with good company and music! I’ve never done this mountain and have always been excited too. As we drove up the side of the mountain – everything looked like it got a nice dusting of snow the night before which made the first bit of the hike interesting. DSC_5326Fluffy snow covering all the ice on the trail – thank goodness for spikes! I finally got to see a beautiful big horn sheep up close and personal! He was climbing up the side of the mountain and it felt like he want right on top of us! I wish I was as graceful as this guy going up and down the mountains, except – I am quite the opposite and you will see that in photos to come! ahaha!

DSC_5344I thoroughly enjoyed shaking the trees as we made our way up, having all the snow cover myself or my friend when he wasn’t looking 🙂 It didn’t take us long to get out of the tree line and for the sun to hit the trail. The views kept getting more and more amazing with each step we took, getting higher!

Ha Ling looked stunning with the sun coming up behind it. It stood out so much, and the snow blowing across it was so clear! Pretty neat seeing Ha Ling that way, the mountain I rang in 2017 on!

This was my first hike with this friend. I always enjoy getting out with new people and even more so when they make you feel so comfortable on the mountain. DSC_5616On the way up, we discussed things that made me nervous on the mountains and so on. Its great when you meet someone who just wants to get out and stand on a mountain and make the experience a comfortable and amazing one for you, and not just race to the top and back down. DSC_5376We reached a spot where I thought I would definitely be uncomfortable and afraid, but when I got to the top of it, I realized that I wasn’t at all! I was a bit cautious and he just talked me through certain spots the whole time. I felt confident and comfortable the whole time, with my self and my abilities and the person I was with. What a good feeling! Hands on scrambling, I loved IT!! Leaning into the side of the mountain and then taking a second to look back at what you’ve accomplished is something that will NEVER get old for me. Such a satisfying feeling for me. Such a rush! There were still some icy spots and then that being covered in snow also, but again, we were cautious and didn’t let up our awareness at all.

We were the first ones on the mountain that morning. We didn’t see anyone for quite a while. A few hours in and quite a ways up, we finally saw someone making there way quickly behind us. DSC_5449We continuously took little breaks to just look around, and take some awesome photos. If you cant tell already, my friend has a wicked eye and captures some pretty great shots! Eventually that man met up with us and we chatted for a bit and he continued moving on up. Once we got closer to the top, we all summit together. He wasn’t sure which would be the best way to reach the top so he followed us, or more like he followed my friend because I sure as heck had no idea what was the best way up. There was SO much snow and it was so steep. DSC_5436We literally just kicked our feet in the sticky, deep snow, and made stairs. I felt like I was crawling up a snow wall, using my hands to grab the feet holes made from my friend. It was so fun! We started to see more people come up behind us, off in the distance and they were sure happy we broke trail for them.

I cant believe how much snow is up in the mountains still. This time last year felt so different, it is cool to compare this time this year to – this time last year. How different is can be.

As we come up to the top, you can start to see what is over the other side. MORE VIEWS! This is what we worked for. I was absolutely THRILLED to stand on the top and yell out a big hell YEA!

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We had some fun at the top for a while, took some pictures and explored around. Again, Absolutely STUNNING and SO much snow! I still cant believe I stand on top of mountains, I took myself there! and to experience it with awesome people is another thing!
We were getting very hungry and decided to make our way down, as it was very windy and it kind of hurt the fingers! Going down was pretty simple with the snow acting like a nice cushion and built in stairs! We found a nice spot to stop, chat and eat some food.

After we finished eating, we continued on. We were at a steep, wide open treeless spot. DSC_5607Time to slide down on our butts and save our knees a bit and cut out some time haha!
Sliding down on my belly …. didn’t work at all. The sequence of the photos my friend took after this one, are all me eventually getting stuck and my legs going over.. and just rolling, haha! So, we stuck to sliding on our butts. It was a blast and hilarious! We got going pretty fast and just hope there were no giant rocks hiding underneath. We got lucky!

DSC_5357It warmed up quite a bit and we started to see more people on our way down. One thing I have learned with winter hiking and do not enjoy is POST HOLING! Thank goodness I have only ever had one leg go through, if both went through, I wonder how far down id fall! haha. Its funny when it happens to the person in front of you and you think you can get around, then – ah shit – it happens to you too! Overall, AMAZING day and experience with a rad person. Finished off with a beer and a burger that, I’m pretty sure I inhaled.

Till next time…

-K

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