Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Ms. Helen.

Tyson was three years old when he visited Mt. St. Helens on a family road trip. He hadn't been back since. I had been to the visitor center years ago with my parents and looked out at the giant crater left behind from the blast in 1980. Last weekend we climbed MSH and reached the summit looking down into that crater. Though I try to think I'm a mountaineer, and kinda wish I was, the mental struggle of the climb is incredibly challenging for me and I often find myself frustrated and uttering the words, "I'm not having any fun." To which my new friend and fellow climber replied, "It's type two fun! You know, the kind that isn't fun in the moment but is super fun to look back on when you're done." This, my friends, is true. I'm extremely happy to be done. And yes, to some extent, I can now see the forest for the trees and the bright spots in the experience: The summit was amazing. The views and the clarity of the day afforded us the ability to see all of the neighboring peaks - Mt. Adams, Mt. Rainier, Mt. Hood and Mt. Jefferson. And the fact that we lugged our snowboards up meant we didn't have to walk down, which, was really the best decision I've made in a long time. Six hours and some change to get up, twenty minutes to snowboard down plus an hour or so to walk out of the trail. We secured our permits for the climb months ago and even though the weather looked bleak in the days leading up to the climb, we could not have chosen a better day.

On the trail hiking up and up and up and up.

The climbing team: Tyson, Lisa B. and Pete, and their friends Katy and Dana. We made it to the summit and peeked over into the crater!
Photo courtesy of Lisa B
Mt Rainier off in the distance <<<<
And a beer at the car thank you very much.

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