“So, do you have plans this weekend?” questioned my boyfriend about the long Memorial Day weekend.
“No plans! Can you believe that? A long weekend and no plans. But! I do want to go to the beach and go on a hike.”
I did accomplish both of these over the long weekend. And here is the first hand account of the hike we went on. Brace yourselves.
Monday May 31, 2010: Memorial Day
The sound of the alarm shook me from my sleep. 8:30am, on my day off. I could have used another hour of sleep.
But we were getting up early to go on a hike at Mt. Wilson. An 8 hr roundtrip hike. That Andrew’s roommate, Fred had done before and was joining us again on it.
Looking back I think the moral of this tale is that I wasn’t prepared for this intense of a hike. I was expecting something not quite as taxing on my body. I feel accomplished however I don’t know if I’ll need to hike it again…at least not to the top.
Monday May 31, 2010: 10:00AM
Signing in – you know…in case death happened.
Essentially this hike is 7mi uphill. It does flatten out a bit but it is very much uphill…and my large behind was feeling it two days later still. Now, I’ve run a marathon. Under most circumstances endurance isn’t my weakness. Endurance on this mountain was a huge problem. Going uphill for hours wasn’t easy, especially when you’re slightly out of shape and working your way back into shape.
The sun was beating down on us and we trudged up the hills. Oh, did I mention we didn’t wear sunscreen?
The “first water” was 1.3 miles from the starting base. Now, remember that’s 1.3 miles UPHILL. It was pretty nice to stop and drink the river water. It was delicious and cold! I’m not one for cold water and very rarely will drink ice with water or ice any warmer than room temperature. So that’s a big step for me.
The halfway point of the 4 hour hike is this excellent plateau with lots of natural sitting places and more of the creek under it.
Just a smidge past the halfway mark. I told Andrew I didn’t think I’d make it. Now, it may have been the consistent uphill or maybe it’s my lack of eating or lack of protein, whichever way it was I was tired. We decided that getting to the top was easier than getting back down at that point. So we kept on going…up and up and up.
The view was amazing and it was so quiet. I have a feeling not many people make it to the top.
From the top of the world…literally!
Fred eating Oreos and I on the top of the world
A rare photog of me without a shirt on + Andrew!
Our genius plan was to have our friend Jake pick us up at the top, he could bring us down and we’d relax and watch a movie. Mmm, perfection. Relaxation.
That is until Jake said the ONLY road going up to the mountain was completely closed off.
OF COURSE IT IS! I mean THAT is my life in a nutshell.
We asked a few straglers with cars at the top if they’d be willing to help us out and it left us with nothing. Except, that the gnats at the top of this mountain were out of this world! I can’t even believe it was happening. I was going insane! No one would talk to us because they were swarming over our heads. I really can’t even describe it.
We had to hike down, we just had to. It was already 3pm, so we needed to jump on it. I was – to put it bluntly – pissed. I was exhausted, sore and hadn’t really eaten in awhile. I was just so frustrated! I decided to eat something and then as I calmed down I felt a little better until we decided to take the short cut for awhile. It was a pretty steep hill and the bugs were so intense! I just couldn’t hold it in any longer and I started crying. To which Andy tried to comfort me and I just went ballistic. I couldn’t apologize enough once my head straightened out a bit.
Halfway mark. Sitting at the plateau, we took a breather. Getting up was difficult. Everything hurt. Estimating a 6:30Pm arrival time at the bottom.
So. Close. Just passing first water. We were almost there!
We made it! Sunburned. Exhausted. Done.
It wasn’t until the next day I realized that I had literally been eaten alive. I went to Andy’s to catch up on Breaking Bad (if you haven’t seen this show, well you should remove yourself from under that rock and get on it!). I showed him my back which had welts of bites all over it and my ankles that look the same. Andrew had NO bites AT ALL and Fred had barely a few. So what was with me?! I guess I’m just so sweet they couldn’t get enough of my nectar!
But seriously, I have 50 odd bites all over me. 20 alone on my left ankle, you better believe I counted.
This hike is an experience that I think the adventurous should take. Now knowing exactly what it’s like I would hike it again, alone of course because my boyfriend will never hike with me again, but I can see myself making it to the halfway mark and going back down. That’s plenty for me, unless I wasn’t planning on coming back down.
Ladies, it is the ultimate calf and butt workout. Hike it once every few weeks and your bottom will be in tip top shape!
So, if you’re looking for an adventure and an intense cardio workout – and adding 10 years onto your life span – hike Mt. Wilson!
And to leave you with…a picture of my dirty self after the hike!
Sunburned and itchy,
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