2016-10-10 | Gibbon Pass via Twin Lakes trail | 2303m | 1450m TH | 23.4km | 873m TA
Forecast was for rain and I was prepared for that - I've hiked in the rain more than necessary this year but this is the last kick at the can for 2016 Larchy goodness. I was awoken at 4:15 by thunder and hail - more weird weather from this upside down weather season. A sign perhaps? Another hour of sleep then toss things in the truck and go connect with Peter for the hike. Flipping radio stations and Avril Lavigne's song "Girlfriend" comes on
I don't like your girlfriend
No way, no way
I think you need a new one
I could be your girlfriend
Well shit - that was stuck in my head for a good part of the day. Hiking ear-worms when you know one verse are the worst. (Last week was the Lumineers 'Cleopatra' a better song but still only know partial lyrics) - lots of internal dialogue while hiking. "Singing" keeps away the bears.
Ready for rain or not it still sucks and it was pissing and +7 at the trailhead. We try to remain positive. I pull out one if my boots from my bag - a water bottle has ended upside down inside it and somehow the cap was loose - my left boot is half full of water. The air gets a little blue. On the plus side a water proof boot works both ways and nothing else was wet. My left foot spent the day in a plastic shopping bag.
Onwards and upwards thru the rain. Peter forges ahead, a sign he's not appreciating the conditions- just me and Avril for the next hour or two. I decide that the underside of my blue umbrella is the sky color - sure, let's go with that. Wet from rain and branches and slop as the trail is part stream - wet from sweat as we gain elevation. Glasses fog, a root causes a spill. A short break at one of the Twin Lakes - forshortened views - we move again before we get cold. As the firs give way to larch the rain gives way to wet snow and we contemplate our next move as we approach Gibbon pass. The precipitation stops, cameras come out, and here and there around us the sun pokes thru in brief windows of glory. The larch are past prime and some of their needles litter the ground mixed with snow but this is the scene we've worked for and we soak it in.
Change up the layers, enjoy a thermos of tea and some two bite brownies and slop back down the trail. Goofing around with my umbrella at the pass now has Mary Poppins in my head "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" - oh isn't this magical! Back in the firs I jog to catch up to Peter - I need some conversation to make the return trip fly by.
© Clayton Ditzler