Sunday, April 19, 2015

first hike of the season...

Paul's Peak Trail
Mt. Rainier National Park entrance to Mowich Lake
7 miles round trip

Okay, here's the Ennis family low down. And I mean low down. You won't get any, "well it was very beautiful," if the hike was crappy. Just not gonna do that. Hiking with kids is hard enough. Wait, hiking over 40 is hard enough. Right?

Our first hike of the season! And this is literally all the snow we saw. Well, other than the few chunks that Collin scrounged up to throw at his sister. But it's a cute picture anyway. There's something about hiking in the spring when there is still a smattering of snow. Not this spring, I guess. 

So, the honest truth about this hike is...we hated it. The whole hike to the washed out bridge at 3.5 miles is downhill. Therefore, the whole way back is uphill! And no one likes that, do they? Ugh. Okay, so I am speaking in absolutes. But seriously, straight down! The whole way down all I could think about was that I was going to have to come back up this. 

Once at the bottom we found this fun bridge. The knuckleheads love bridges. Especially now that they are big enough that I don't make them hold my hand. 
The bridge is about the 1 mile marker. Then the hills roll a little and lead you into this false reality of hiking. Rolling hills are great for hiking. Everyone is happy. We start popping out the jelly beans and talking about what a great hike this is. Until we meet the big mammy-jammy, the "hill of death switchbacks," Camryn called it. By this time, Mike and I have decided the end has got to be worth it. Got to be worth it. I mean who would build a trail like this to nothing, right?
This is such a beautiful view of Mt. Rainier (kind of washed out) and the Carbon River glacier and river bed (and Cam's pony tail). I was really hoping we were going down to that section of the river bed because 3.5 miles down would be worth an adventure there. 

At the 3 mile marker we hit the Wonderland Trail. Fun memories for Mike. I think it was at that point, that he "remembered" the hill of death. Hmmmm, how does that happen?

We came through the downhill switchbacks from hell to this...finally!

Don't get me wrong, this is beautiful. But honestly, we could have driven to a very similar bed along the same river with the same non-view of the mountain, had our lunch and walked happily back to the car. 

We did meet some nice people along the way, always a plus.

But the walk back was much, much, much, MUCH worse. I guess we survived. Ask me tomorrow. 

Casualties included; two falls, one bloody nose and one melt down.

Probably because we were out of jelly beans... 

Heidi's input: 2 stars (and that's a stretch, I guess I just feel bad for the guy who built the trail..Paul something. Geez, I wouldn't want that trail named after me.)
Cam's input: 3 stars, steep hills but some good views (always the positive one!)
Collin's input: 2 stars, not good enough views, all up hill
Mike's input: 1 star, no money shot 


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