Thursday, July 24, 2008

North Rim Trail closed.

Yesterday I hiked the South Rim Trail to several falls because the road was closed. Today, I went to the North Rim only to find both the road AND the trail closed. The fun part though is that the signs don't say the trail is closed, so you load up your gear and hike in a quarter mile before running into the barricade. I was a bit disappointed, but I had already hiked the south side of the falls anyway, and this gave me more time to hike Mt. Washburn.


The hike was tougher than I'd expected (thanks to my attendant daypack overloaded with photography gear) and gave me reminder #107 why I don't climb mountains anymore. I ran into a magnificent dall sheep ram near the summit though, so it was certainly worth the effort. His full-curled horns and other hard-to-miss anatomy had me feeling rather insecure in my masculinity (you get weird thoughts when you're alone for this long).

The summit was a little over 10,000 feet. Given how exhausted I was, it was hard to imagine that almost one year ago I was approaching 19,000 feet in weather 75 degrees colder.

Tomorrow I head down to the Grand Tetons (no giggling from the French readers). I'm looking forward to it. I was planning to stay a few more days, but Sarah is having a tough time being alone this long while studying for the bar exam. At first we both thought she'd want me out of the house so there would be fewer distractions, but it appears now it makes things worse. I won't tell her I'm coming back early, though. It will be a nice surprise.

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