Saturday, July 2, 2011

Chilkoot Trail: To the Summit

Joy on Heartbreak Hill, first hour of a five day hike. Andrew racing to catch up.

Hiking the Chilkoot appears to have become an annual event once again. We headed out a week earlier than last spring hoping for more snow to make the hike a little easier. Sometimes you get what you wish for but wish you hadn't. Our party of ten included a grouping of several families from across Canada, some experienced hikers and others new to both the trail and the art of backpacking.

A break and a smile along the trail.
Hiking the board walk over the beaver pond.
The weather was cool entering the rainforest and we enjoyed the spring wild flowers and the magical noise of the running water in the rivelets dropping down to the roar of the Taiya River at the bottom of the valley. At Canyon City, our first night, the sound of the river drowned out all else.

Andrew starting supper preparations at Canyon City
Bill and Mike

Janna and her trainee rescue dog Howard saved my bacon, well my knee actually, later in the hike.
Fran our Maritime sister shared stories of her hikes from around ther world.
Beyond our second night at Sheep camp we broke out of the rain forest and looked up into the mountains.
Trevor and Doug, our South African hiking buddies, were the last out of Sheep camp. They had a close encounter with a grizzly bear and were quite excited when they caught up to us and told us their story.
From the scales we could see the others climbing the Golden Stairs ahead of us. But we stopped to make hot soup and eat a hearty lunch before tackling the final climb to the summit.

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