Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Bugaboos - Day 6, Food Run in the Rain

We sleep late. The clouds that began building yesterday have covered up all the blue. They're almost touching Snowpatch and Bugaboo Spires. My legs are stiff, but otherwise I feel pretty good. People are milling about camp, and very few climbers are headed out for the bigger objectives. Many people are packing their things and heading down. Perhaps they know something we don't know.

By 11:30 we're sipping mint tea spiked with Canadian Club whiskey. At noon we decide our legs feel alright. (alcohol is good like that). We're going to get our 4 extra days of food from the car. The hike is only 4 miles, but it gains/loses 1000m in the process.

Ten minutes after leaving Applebee Dome campground is begins to rain. We don our rain gear and keep walking, keeping the pace very casual. With lightweight daypacks the walk down is quite pleasant. The trail passes through small cliffbands and open avalanche slopes with great views of the spectacular Bugaboo Glacier before going into a temperate rainforest.

At the car we gorge on snacks and enjoy a few Bozone Ales and Tumbleweed IPA's we've stashed under the car. Before long we're stuck with heavier bags and a 4 mile uphill walk.

It rains lightly on the walk in, but we're too warm to wear our rain gear. We reach the Kain Hut quickly. by now we've learned that the hut is only 2/3 of the way there. Applebee and the Hut look so close to each other on a map, but they're actually 300 vertical meters (1000' of vert.) apart. The last kilometer is a gut buster no matter what you're carrying. You can see Applebee the whole time, but it stays far away until you're practically on top of the dome.

Camp has cleared out. Few people have gone climbing and the skies are very gray. As night falls a handful of headlamps begin to do the skyline of Bugaboo Spire. Despite the ominous forecast people continue to climb. I don't envy their judgment.

We set up my 10'x10' Brooks Range tarp over our side-by-side BD Firstlight Tents. People looked at us funny for our cozy tent set, but with the upcoming forecast the tarp overhead will keep us dry and allow us to cook and hang out, even in the rain.