Six-Time Ironman Triathlon Champion
Vancouver's beautiful North Shore played home to the majority of my Easter weekend. Full of friends, food and forests, it has been one of the most memorable and satisfying Easter holidays in recent Haastory...
On friday morning I met up with two friends, Dan and his roommate Jenny for the Grouse Snowshoe Grind! As we climbed we played 'name the 35 countries in the Americas.' They rocked this - me, not so much! I veered off at the top as they looped back towards Grouse, working on Africa's 46.
|Jenny, Dan and me at the top of Dam Mountain|
I followed a fellow hiker's trail to Goat mountain and on as far as I could on the horse-shoe shaped ridge (see map). From the north arm, I could see the Lynn Valley below. I paced the snowy ridge for 45 minutes trying to find the safest way down. I finally settled on a chute that I was pretty sure went the whole way down... otherwise it would be a very unpleasant hike back up the near vertical snow field.
|Looking back up the chute|
|The red line shows my path - 14km|
Slowly the white snow gave way to green algae-covered boulders and tangles of mangled trees from last season's runoff. I periodically checked over my shoulder just to make sure that all the snow I just descended hadn't suddenly melted and was going to wash me away!
|The green river bed|
After a slow and careful decent I emerged onto a wide strong river. This was the river that I could see from the peaks, far above. With no human trail to be found I bushwhacked my way along the west bank of the river until ... wait, what is that? There's something moving over there... its.. its a couple making out. I emerged from the woods directly across the river from them - they were unfazed. I cross the river 20 yards up stream and walked past them - they remained lip-locked.
|Lynn Valley River|
Saturday was filled with a light run, lots of food and rest.
Sunday was perfect. My neighbor Conor and I joined Matt and his beau Preston (very cool dude) for brunch at Sophie's diner. We then made our way to the North Shore where we stopped by YYoga for an amazing flow class where seemingly every joint in my body let loose and I sweat up a storm - this will be a far more regular practice moving forward. Matt's sister, Steph and her husband Doug invited us all over for Easter Dinner post yoga. We had a delicious meal and I truly feel blessed to have such an amazing extended family in Vancouver.
Easter Monday was also a day off for me so I took advantage of the free time to try my feet on the Baden Powell Trail. I started out from Deep Cove and ran/hiked until I was sweat and rain soaked, shivering and hungry. About 4 hours after I started I popped out at the base of Grouse Mountain - roughly half way and 24km conquered!
To quite my mind on these excursions I listened to Mark's words and started focusing on the beauty that surrounds me. This Province and the people that I love make it easy to keep a clear mind when every inch of my body hurts.