K2inCanada's Blog

July 6, 2014

Hike with our Neighbours – Jun 28

Filed under: Canada, Hike — K2 in Canada @ 9:37 PM

Fishing season is pretty much done – and I still have lots of post to write about all the trips we did this year – but hiking season has began and it’s a change in topic to write about :-).

We have known Iyomi and Igor for a few years now. We had a reason to meet them when they got their first German Shepard puppy a couple years ago :-). They are both avid outdoors people like us – hiking, cross country skiing, rock climbing… – but we had never done anything together. Igor works as an electrician in an Uranium Mine in Northern Saskatchewan and works 2 weeks on and than 2 weeks off. Iyomi is a nurse. So our schedules are quite different. We mostly meet in the driveway once in a while, talk about our adventures and pet the dog. Their first Shepard died unexpectedly last year – Buck loved people and was always playfull.  It didn’t take long for them to get a new one. Kubo is a much quieter dog and not quite as welcoming to strangers as Buck was.  For example, she hates runners – so when I run into work once a week I always have to make sure she isn’t out. I still love her though – she is a beautiful animal.

Last Saturday, while Jeff and I had breakfast and talked about going for a paddle the door bell rings. It was Igor asking if we want to go hiking with them. They had picked a hike in the Tantalus Mtn range north of Squamish. It was a mix of sun and clouds day. We decided to all pile into their newly-acquired Tacoma – extended cap so lots of room in the back not like ours. But it took some convincing of Kubo before she allowed Jeff and I to share the back seat with her. But once we were all piled into the truck all was good. It’s a bit of a drive to get to the place they picked – about 2hrs of which 1hrs is off the paved road and slow going – and just before we finally got there it started raining in buckets. It had been dry the whole rest of the way. So we decided to go back to Squamish and do a different hike – a backway approach to the 3rd Peak of the Chief. This is usually an area rock climbers use to get to more hidden-away and therefore less busy climbing areas. The Chief itself is a very popular trail and always busy with people. We didn’t see a sole until we got to the top of 3rd peak. To get there though is quite steep in sections. Igor had to strap Kubo on his back to get up some of the steep cliffs. I was amazed that the dog held still for it. Otherwise the trail is really nice – along some impression rock formations – the ones we were walking past and not up – through 2nd growth forest with a couple views along the way.

The views from up top would be quite nice except that right at that moment some rain clouds moved through. Kubo also did a number on us on the top. We were just getting there when she started to charge at a couple people near the edge – or so we thought. But Kubo wasn’t interested in the people, she was chasing a chipmunk – and disappeared right over the edge of the cliff. I thought she was gone for good but luckily it was not a straight cliff but only a steep slope. So she managed to get back up. Crazy dog – we tied her up while eating our lunch on the top. A lot more chipmunks came by though teasing her – funny to watch. Not sure how that dog did not break her neck.

The hike down from 3rd peak though is even steeper and very rocky through a narrow gully. Long drops which my knee did not like at ALL. It was already a bit sore from the hike up. But that section through the gully was really painfull. Luckily all gullies do end at some point and the trail turned a bit more level for a while – going away again from the popular trails. Nevertheless the knee didn’t really recover much and the last bit was very steep again. Everyone had to wait for me…sigh. Jeff was running ahead with Kubo all the time – trying to train her that runners are not targets – and she seemed to enjoy the game.  We hiked past more rock climbing walls – apparently the most difficult free route in all of Canada (Cobra Crack 5.14). Sure looked impossible to me :-). Eventually we got down back to the truck – and everyone was tired after 4hrs15min of hiking.

A great day and we will for sure do more hikes together. Maybe in 2 weeks when Igor is back in town.

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