I recently returned from a day hike to Wedgemount Lake, and I was justifiably impressed with its rugged beauty. I was regaling my co-workers with my self-described heroic conquer of the mountain when they expressed interest in the hike. Being a sucker for punishment, I raised my hand to take part in an overnight hike with a couple of fine blokes.
The plan to hike under decent weather was straight forward thanks to climate change. According to my memory (with the accuracy rate of 25% of the time, every time), there has never been such a long stretch of hot, sunny weather in the area. A quick glance of the forecast showed brilliant sunny weather until the end of the forecast period. A date was quickly hammered out, and the suffering awaits.
We elected for an early start, and I was excited about the cooler temperature when compared to my last hike. I was curious of the difference it would make in my perceived effort of the hike. Once we set off on our climb, I quickly realized that the high temperature may had contributed to my poor hiking performance last time; however, the primary factor would still be my fat ass. As I witnessed my co-workers galloping uphill like graceful mountain goats, I began to feel like a wild boar that had one too many meal. Thankfully, even the fat wild boar made it to the top with a little patience and a lot of sweating.
The early start paid off when it came time to pick our camp sites. We picked three of the tent pads that overlooked the lake from above since it had great views of the entire area. Many day hikers agreed with our choice and they even had the pleasure of seeing “P” expertly pitching his tent. It was a great time for all!
Typical of other areas frequented by humans, the wild life around Wedgemount Lake didn’t shy away. A marmot was loitering around my tent pad and looking for any wayward snacks that may had fallen between the cracks. It ended up eating what appeared to be the leftover coal from an illegal campfire. I hope it won’t get sick from it.
Sometimes I am surprised by the candid resemblance between wild animals and humans. As you can see above, both “P” and the marmot decided to veg out on a rock and soak up the rays. I was impressed by their abilities to relax in those precarious positions. Marmot or human, I guess it’s hard not to be taken by the exceptionalview; however, I will only rat out the human to his wife if he falls on his face due to his silly ways.
After some loitering around the next morning, we started our descent down the mountain. The very first challenge was the loose rock and soil that required some scrambling on the way up. After gingerly traversing through the area with careful and thoughtful steps, the descent was less threatening. Tangling one’s feet in the exposed roots would still cause some serious damage, but cannon balling downhill into the abyss was less likely.
Much to my surprise, the porky stature that caused me so much grief on the way up became the fuel of my forward momentum on the way down. Gravity is not always a jerk. While the mountain goats were moving downhill deliberately, this wild boar was barging downhill like those people chasing the rolling cheese down the mountain. We collectively ran out of gas just as the trailhead came into view. The thought of civilization with such magical luxuries like escalators, elevators, and gondolas, moving people up and down impossible heights by mechanical voodoo, was everything that I looked forward to at the moment. I am sure the mountains would come calling once again soon enough.
P.S. Hikers’ faces blurred since I do not want to deal with their fan mails.