Thursday, June 5, 2014

Recent Adventures into the Wild

Very niiiice. Sunrise to the left. The skies looked so good.
This spring has been rather chill and I have not been able to get outdoors much. However, a few weeks back, a couple friends and in my department and I did a sunrise hike at Rattlesnake Ledge. Being weather students and all, we picked the perfect morning for clear skies so we could see the sun come up and it was truly beautiful. My favorite part was hiking in the dark even though that was only for a short bit of time - skies lit up pretty fast. A toad scared the bajeebers out of me when we were hiking up too. I thought it was poisonous because it had yellow strips on its back but my friends didn't think so. I decided not to touch it though, ya never know! Anyways the sunrise was set for 5:54am or something close and we made it to the overlook right around then, but the sun didn't actually pop out until like 6:30am. That is something to keep in mind - that on a sunrise hike, there is no exact moment of the sunrise like the iPhone weather app states. You can get there at any moment and the sunrise will be gorgeous.

Friends and dog on MSH
Another recent adventure was my attempt to summit Mt. Saint Helens about a month ago. The weather didn't look too good but since we purchased mountain permits, we decided to attempt the summit regardless. It rained the entire trip, so camping nearby before we set out hiking was pretty miserable. I have never camped in so much rain! We left for the summit around 7am and by 8am, we had hit the snow level and put on our crampons. At this point, I was almost completely soaked even through the gore-tex jacket I was wearing. My gloves, boots, and snow pants were also soaked and it was getting colder as we climbed. I think we got to around 6,000 feet, somewhat close to the top and decided the situation was too damn crappy to continue on. Our gear was completely soaked and only meant to resist snow or light rain, not this heavy rain the size of rhinos that had dumped on us. On our way down, the winds were cutting up the south face so hard and flung small bits of raindrops and ice into my right cheek . I think I lost a layer of my face. In the end, the whole trip was unpleasant due to the weather so I'll definitely have to try the summit attempt again.

Still have four of the five Wash. volcanoes to summit. Hopefully get to Baker and maybe MSH again by this fall.

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