We started out early enough. Nicky picked me up at 8 and we were on our way immediately. We found Wakefield Road and up we went, exactly according to instructions. And then – shortly after turning up the steep road, we encountered water. Yup, a deep dip in the road. Well, we said to ourselves – better not take the truck that far. Let’s walk. What the heck!
We backed down to where we’d noticed another very overgrown road heading off to the right of “our” road, parked there and began to walk. We forded the creek. And soon-ish found the end of the road. But where was the trail? Hmmmm. I climbed up the berm at the end of the road, otherwise known as the end of present civilization and found a bit of flagging. Cool – off we went on a STEEP sidehill. What I really mean is that we came as close to bushwhacking as you can get without actually whacking bushes.
And then the trail went downhill – a lot – precipitously. Hmmm. Not a trail, we decided. We turned around and walked back to the road. Now what? We looked for flagging or any signs of a trial. None.
And it occurred to us. The only possibility was that the old overgrown road was the right way. But how could that be? Shouldn’t there be a sign?
We got to the old overgrown road. There was a sign. Duh!
Do we drive up it to the parking lot? We chose to walk. As we did, we noticed that this was a perfectly driveable road. But when we encountered a huge tree across the road we were so glad we had decided to walk. Smart (lucky) us!
Still, by the time we got to the actual trailhead and the actual trail (singed and mapped and everything!) we had eaten up a fair amount of time. But up we went.
Super trail: well-engineered – some blowdown (12 trees) but really well done. Had we started when we would have started if we had started when the start was at the beginning (are you following this?) we would have been up to the top within three hours. As it was, at one p.m. we called it. By then we were well into the sub-alpine and had done about 1,000 metres of elevation. We were hungry and I had dogs to get home to. Besides, it was at that point that we encountered two snow patches (two feet square?) so hey – the snow stopped us! That’s my “official” story and I’m sticking with it. We had a great lunch view and then turned back, knowing we will be back and going all the way up very, very soon. A great recce trip!
And we will have no trouble finding this trail again because Nicky, emulating her puppy, marked the trail every couple of minutes. She has awesome capacity! (she asked me not to mention this but hey – how can you not praise that kind of talent?)
More exciting news: Helen wants to do Dennis Ridge in a few days! Kuskanax coming up again! Idaho Peak again! Damn – hiking season is in full bloom and I am insanely ecstatic about it! And Nicky is the best hiking partner ever (for more reasons than the ability to mark trails really well)! Simon says we are having a womance. hehehe