Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Grouse Grind

On our recent trip to Vancouver we decided to enjoy the splendid September weather by doing the Grouse Grind, nicknamed "Nature's Stairmaster". The trail is only 2.8 KM, but the elevation gain is 2,900 ft. Erik pointed out the irony of measuring the distance in metric, and the elevation in feet. For those of you who do much hiking, that is a very steep climb - an average 30% grade, which is steeper than the Mt. Si hike which averages 1,000 ft of gain per MILE.

We started around 10:30, and already the trail was very crowded. By the time we finished, one could see a steady stream of climbers coming up the trail. Sven led the way for us, and it was difficult, as the steps were obviously designed for adult legs, not kid legs. Often, he had to pull himself up a step with two hands. But he did a great job of scrambling over rocks, roots, and large steps to get to the top - and there was very little complaining. He said his legs were getting sore, but that was it. We met several groups with kids, and not a single one looked happy. 1.5 hours after we started, we were at the top and enjoying the fantastic view. We took the cable car down, as hiking down is not allowed.


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