Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Home Again

And so we come to the end of another successful road trip. After the wedding of Kristal's cousin, we made the long drive back across the plains, to spend a few days at my parent's farm before heading home to Ottawa.

The climbing this summer has been nothing short of amazing, highlighted by the many long multi-pitch routes we climbed in some truly spectacular settings, and culminating with our epic trip to the Bugaboos.

We have definitely done a lot more trad climbing in the last 4 months than we did in any of our previous road trips. The final stats come out to 12 days of sport climbing, 15 days of bouldering, and 43 days of trad climbing; for a total of 70 days on the rock in 26 different destinations.

Of course the climbing was only surpassed by all the great people, both old friends and new, who we met on the way. The trip was made much more enjoyable because of you. And as usual, a big thanks to all our friends and family who opened up their homes to us, allowing us to enjoy all the comforts of the inside for a few days.

Once again the blog will most likely go into limbo until we hit the road again, which will hopefully happen again next summer.

Thanks again for joining us on our adventure!

"We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open."
- Jawaharlal Nehru

Friday, September 7, 2012

Nearing the End

As the summer started to wind down, so did our climbing. Our last climbing stop was in Waterton Lakes National Park in southern Alberta.

We climbed to the top of the Bear's Hump, which is also the end of a popular hiking trail. If only all our climbs ended in such comfortable benches!

We also did some hiking in Glacier National Park in Montana, heading up to Avalanche Lake.

We even found a reasonable boulder to climb on the way.

The scenery of the park is breathtaking. We didn't even mind the 20 minute wait for road construction while driving through.

Before heading to Medicine Hat for the wedding of one of Kristal's cousins we had one more stop to make. Ever since we came out west a couple of years ago I have been bugging Kristal to take me to the small town of Drumheller, home of the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology. The museum boasts the largest collection of dinosaur fossils in Canada and it was pretty awesome to go check it out.

We also spent some time seeing the sights around town, including the nearby badlands.

And the Little Church, which seats a whopping 6 people.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Short Approaches

Between the Bugaboos and Mount Gimli, our knees needed a break from all the long approaches. After a welcome trip to the Lussier Hot Springs, we spent the next week doing some single pitch climbing in BC and Montana. It doesn't get much more convenient than being able to belay out of your car, which could be done quite easily at Stone Hill, Montana.

It seems 99% of people that climb there don't venture very far from the road, and if you hike for more than 5 minutes you can enjoy some excellent climbing without seeing another soul.

As well as enjoy some excellent views of Lake Koocanusa.

Unfortunately on our first night camping in the area, we were treated to the sounds of something rummaging under the hood of our car. In the morning, this was what we found.

Eventually we spied the guilty party hiding out in front of the radiator.

The next 2 days were filled with fun games of 'how to get a pack rat out of your car'. No amount of poking, prodding, driving around or makeshift traps seemed to do the trick. I finally just waited him out, and when he left in the middle of the night to do whatever it is that pack rats do, I moved the car to a wide open field down the road. Our vehicle was once again rodent free!

We also spent a couple of days at Lakit Lake in British Columbia, enjoying some fun climbing with excellent free camping beside the lake.

We even found some cool pictographs along the base of the cliffs.