Firstly, you should know that this is my second 14er. Yes, my second 14er. As encouraged by Ben, I have complete confidence in my ability to conquer this mountain. I don’t remember much of the car ride….which could have something to do with the fact that I was dead asleep. What else is new? So we arrive to a very dark parking lot where I slowly awake. Ben proceeds to pack up all our gear, while I unwillingly tumble out of the car. We begin hiking, and it is pitch black, except for our head lamps. Ben mentions that we are passing Maroon Lake, though it is so dark, I can see nothing but the branches along the path. I will take his word for it. At some point we jump through a small rushing stream, and the ascent quickly becomes steeper and steeper from there. All I know is that we are somewhere deep in the woods, AND we are nowhere near the top. Dawn begins to bring depth to our world, and still all I can see are trees surrounding us. I am happy to be here with my hubby. It seems like we are hiking for ages. This is a long ascent.
Next, we come upon an awesome boulder field, and I feel like I am a kid again, hopping from one boulder to the next like I am on my own personal playground. Now, comes the HARD part. We begin to ascend even steeper terrain, and the boulder field reduces to a scree field.
There aren’t many people on the mountain, but the ones who are pass us with ease. Don’t care. All I care about is getting to the top. Soon the scree field becomes slightly more sturdy ground.
We continue up this treacherous thing, and my legs begin to wear on me. Are you sure I am ready for this? We come to a small crevice. Don’t mess up here!!! I jump over it, safe and sound. This way isn’t so hard as I can jump down a little. The way back up was not quite so easy! It seems like there is not much more to go, and we arrive to the summit. I feel like I could conquer anything 🙂 And Ben had complete confidence in me the whole way. NOW Ben informs me that this hike is one of the top ten most difficult, as 14ers go. THANKS A LOT! But that was probably smart because I wouldn’t have gone if I had known otherwise. We take a water break and soak in the beautiful view. We even get to chat with my hiking rivals for a few minutes before they take off back down the mountain.
The only thing I remember about the descent is that I felt like my legs were going to fall off. I thought I was going to slip and fall every step, and the hike down was ten times longer than the hike up. How is that possible? The hike up was an eternity!!!
We finally reached our transport, and we were off back to our comfy home for some good, solid food and a warm bath.