Saturday, November 3, 2012

Awesome Hikes Happen When Alarms Fail

Workout: endless hiking

Another awesome hike!

I was pissed when I woke up this morning and my alarm hadn't gone off. I was going to go on yet another epic hike with my hiking group, but my stupid new iPhone is so fancy it sometimes sets alarms for only certain days of the week. Turns out Saturday wasn't one of them. Fortunately, my dad was around to hear my complaining, so kindly agreed to head out with me (probably more to shut me up than anything else).

We decided to head to Williwaw Lakes, which we probably should have looked up first because it was a loooooong hike. 18 miles, to be exact. We apparently hiked it a few years ago (although I didn't recognize anything until we were almost there), but we took the shorter route, 6 miles each way. Taking the longer route and adding snow into the equation meant it was much tougher than we were expecting, but it felt good to put in a solid effort.

Familiar territory-those mountains are the same I run by on Powerline

There wasn't much elevation gain (although there was a lot more than I remembered), but we still got some pretty great views. It was a few miles until we got to the valley we needed to head up, but once we arrived there was plenty to look at.

Looking back towards Anchorage 

We were heading towards that mountain in back, Williwaw Mountain (or Peak, maybe. Whatever). No one had been on the trail since it snowed so we were left to figure out where to go. It was not as obvious as one might think.

There was also a fair amount of "ice roulette"-hearing that hollow ice noise beneath your feet and holding your breath as you took the next step... there was a lot of breaking through, but fortunately no one got wet. Bailey's much more cautious with river crossings now. Seems she's capable of learning something, at least! We're still working with her on the "come" command, however. It's a (failing) work in progress.

Frozen waterfall-see it?

We made it to the lake, had a quick lunch, and turned around.

I realized on this hike why I dislike going to lakes so much (as opposed to bagging a peak). When you go up something, on your way back you've still got an incredible view to stare at. When you've gone to a lake, not so much. Obviously our views didn't suck, but looking down at Anchorage is much less inspiring than looking towards Williwaw. At that point, the best of the hike is over yet you've still got to make it back to the car.

Okay, this isn't awful, I'm just a bitch

Sleeping Lady and downtown Anchorage

We continued down, down, down, and it all seemed to take three times longer than it had on the way there (probably because our pace had slowed significantly).

You'll notice Bailey has a rather large stick in her mouth. She is sort of obsessed with sticks so my dad threw this one as a joke, not thinking she'd actually bother to try to pick it up. Not only did she pick it up, she proceeded to drag it around for the next ten minutes despite hardly being able to lift it. We kept trying to get her to put it down but she only took that as a challenge. Special dog.

Anyway, we finally got back to the car and were totally beat. A total of seven hours spent outside! Not gonna lie, I was kind of jealous when I started getting flooded with texts from friends back east having a crazy time celebrating another friend's birthday, but in the end, this beats New York any day.

I hope you all had as awesome a Saturday as I did!


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