DAY 78 Heading to Grand Lake

June 30th

Well what a night I was almost nodding off when the winds came.

It was terrifying as my tent was tossed around like a paperback and once again I was concerned that it would  ripped in two

There’s little I can do just fingers crossed it dies down  eventually.

But in the meantime I just pulled my hat over my eyes sunk lower into my bag and  covered my head with my  bag and silently prayed it would soon stop

Phew at 9.30 it went quite very quite   well until the rain started and by then I began to nodded off.

And great fantastic no midnight excursions into the woods with TP.

My series of alarms went off I silenced every one except the last

At 6.30 I removed the stopper from my mattress  and began the slow get up.

I didn’t have enough water for tea so maybe later I will make one.

I was just packing up when a familiar figure came by.

Silver i called.

But he didn’t see me so I walked towards him.

Hi we chatted about our final  moments before Copper mountain and where we both crashed.

OK see you shortly I said.

But as the old proverb says 

More haste less speed. What a crap packup  but at last I was  ready.

I set off on trail and continued  the climb from yesterday.

It was an awful lot further  to the summit  than I had realised 

After half an hour I thought I could see markers for the top and even these were still a long way off.

I pushed on up in the distance I could see about a dozen tiny people. Omg it’s still miles away.

I checked my app only to find the trail went off to my right.

Luckily I hadn’t gone too far so  set a course to intercept the trail.

There you are.i was back on trail but with all the recent snow the trail was invisible.  Except  for cairns spaced a long way apart so you had to scan the horizon for them and getting to each one was a complete chore as no trail was defined.

At last one began to appear.

Then to my left I saw a familiar figure it was Silver, seems that he had also continued up the other trail almost to the top.

Once again we fell into line silver taking the lead but as I tend to stop  quite often to  take video. Silver was soon a long way ahead as the mist began to roll in.

Not sure if I like that but luckily it  soon disappeared we were still climbing  with the occasional dip.

Eventually I arrived at the Ptarmigan pass/saddle

Silver continued on  up but I needed a break. God knows where he gets all his energy from 

I ate a peanut bar and glugged water. I then heard a shout.

It was  silver pointing….

Later I found out he was showing me the way as he had gone wrong.

I headed in the right direction  as the rain started and got progressively fierce.

I was shielded in the forest until I came out into a clearing. 

The trail now spent about an hour going down. But the trail was really well maintained with  long easy switchbacks  (nice)

As I continued down I caught silver who had stopped to filter water. 

Once at the bottom* the trail meandered around before starting to climb back out of the valley. 

The trail was a little scruffy and not well marked. Then I came to a large river…. really no bridge.

So I splashed across. Once across  the trail went straight through bog really!! Before heading  back into woods, the trail then climbed up straight up No nice switchbacks like the other side just up and up.

I imeadity began to struggle and said F*uck several times quite loudly.  “Who designed this bloody section”

Up and up occasionally  with a small flat bit then back up.

I really wanted to get to the top  before taking a break but I was done.

I spied a dry log under  a tree. Perfect, I quickly dropped my pack  and sat on the log. I ate a few snacks and guzzled water.

Okay lets get those miles.

I went back to the climbing as the trail continued up and up and up.

Omg does this not stop.

I then emerged out of the forest.

Oh F*uck the trail continued up passing through a long meadow.

I can’t do anymore of this a mystery voice said.

There was a small spinny that looked dry. I made my way across and dumped my pack. 

If it had been flat inside I would have thrown tent..

I sat there for 10 minutes hating today’s section.

But to get From A to C you  have to pass B

So reluctantly I hoisted up my pack and began again.

The rain was now throwing it down as I made my way from cairn to cairn still heading up.

I was getting cold and getting  miserable..

At last I was at the top except I wasn’t the trail headed off to the right and up. 

I said my favourite word several times and set off. Now the bloody wind returned  for some fun too

I continued on following the cairns until the mist rolled in.

And I was lost…..I made my way to a large bunch of trees and hunkered down the rain was intense with the help of the wind.

I began to feel a little vunerable.

On top of a mountain in fog..mist with terencial rain and wind and I was getting cold.

I checked my app ,actually I was not far off trail.when there was a lull I stuck my head out and was surprised to see the trail as the mist had gone.

Unfortunately I could also see the trail snake up the side of the next mountain 

FUCK FUCK no no.

I just wanted to put up my tent and get into it

I scanned the valley below.

Oh fuck it I said out loud and headed to the climb.

I seemed to have found a little energy and pushed on up the hill  but once again after reaching this summit  I was met with several more. . Again I pushed on climbing climbing  climbing. At last I was up with amazing views.

The trail apeared to go down the valley but as i got nearer i noticed it climb over a knifes edge

I cautiously made my way down and crossed the knifes edge but then there was a second that  climbed high and looked quite scary. but to my right there appeared to be a bypass trail 

Cool I will take that. It was very slippery as I made my way around.  

But once around. I was dismayed to see a huge ice corniche 

That’s not what I wanted to see and high up to my left I could make  out another cairn 

Sorry.. But a  stream of rude word’s came out of my mouth. Well it was really only 1 word said many times.

I was cold and wet and had ,had enough.

There were not many options.

I stared  down I into the vally. It was a steep climb down.

Okay im going down .this may be a bad choice. 

It was very slippery  as I made my way down the side of the mountain. 

It took a while as I didn’t want yo slip or fall.

As i made my way down  I began to think . This may be a big mistake. 

Okay im down  it took a few minutes to decide  on a spot and then I struggled to put up my tent in the rain because my fingers were so numb.  Once up I  threw every thing in and then went for water.

Once back I inflated my mattress  took off my wet shoes and socks and got into my bag as I was cold.

I lit my stove and made hot chocolate. 

As soon as I poured the hot water into my cup, the wind and rain stopped and out came the sun and shone as hot as it could.

REALLY !!!!!!

Well I’m here and going to relax although it’s  going to be a bastard climb back up the mountain in the morning …but that is tomorrow 

Mileage   12…  (lots of climbing)

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