What we meant to do last weekend was climb up to Hollyburn peak on Cypress Mountain. We WERE going to buy Karin some new winterwear, suit up, and climb into the backcountry on a elaborate, long-ignored, hiking expedition. However, as I wrote then, we bought climbing shoes instead.
The dream was whisped away, melting like the snow on the streets of Vancouver.
For those not so versed in the fine art of Lower Mainland geography, Cypress is the multi-peaked slope hovering above the coastal suburb of West Vancouver. Atop the city-side mountain is a popular ski hill, and a recreation area where one can rent cross-country skis and snoeshoes. I have mused on it’s existence in the past, noting that ONLY in Vancouver would someone actually pay money to bring their family to a particularly uninteresting toboggan hill.
We usually try to avoid the place. But I’ve been there with Cubs in the past — we have a cabin there — and have always wanted to drag Karin through the bitter cold to climb the Baden Powell trail with plastic and aluminum strapped to her feet. We resparked the fires of that dream last night, walking over to Brentwood Mall and purchasing some inexpensive pastel-blue waterproof leg things (picked specifically to clash with the rest of her winter wardrobe) and setting our alarms for early — EARLY. The plan was set.
This morning, waking up earlier than was possibly pleasant for a Saturday holiday well-deserved sleep-in, we suited up and drove into the shroud of fog draped over the mountain. Fleeced up, rented snowshoes securely tied around our boots, we proceeded to climb to the peak.
Up and down in less than four hours, highlights include:
:: “The Butt-sliding Luge”, whereing Brad and Karin make double-cheeked trails down the side of the mountain.
:: “Counting Crows”, wherein Brad and Karin converse with two enthusiastic black birds sitting in the ten-foot-deep snow.
:: “The Great Binding Rescue”, whereing Brad and Karin save a triplet of skiiers from climbing back up the mountain to recover their lost binding.
:: “Wet Foggy Mountain Blues”, wherein Karin and Brad discover the magic silence of a heavy shroud of wet fog on a mildly cold January morning.
For those interested, Karin posed for over twenty wintery photos, which have been posted here in the photogallery.