Saturday, August 9, 2008

Shasta: The Reality...

We got to Mt Shasta Wednesday afternoon, and went for the ranger station in order to figure out what we needed to do to climb, and also to check the route we had planned. We saw there was basically no snow at all on the mountian, but we figured it would still work out. The ranger told us that people in what seemed like our physical condition had made it up in 10-14 hours, and that it was a long slow hike, that he didn't really recommend it. And there was a big old cloud sitting on the top. So we deliberated, went to the headwaters of the Sacramento River (which is a spring just pouring out of the mountianside) and then finally decided to give it a try. So up we go, on this dusty road, while the light is slowly getting darker.
We made up some dinner and then put on our backpacks and took off up the trail. The Base Camp was around 8500 ft, and we made it just after dark, and then set down to sleep, preparing to wake up at 3 am in order to try to make the summit.
We got up, made a kind of slow breakfast, and finally were on the trail and moving at 3:50 am, at a lively pace, trying to find the trail in the dark, and after an hour we realized we'd gone nearly 3,000 ft, a pace which if we kept up, would bring us to the top in another hour. Then the sun came up, and the altitude began to hit us and we slowed down a bit, pausing at 11,500 ft, 12,500 ft and 13,700 ft for some rest. Then we made the push to the summit, arriving at 8:00 am. Four and a half hours. So there you go, Mr. Ranger, not quite the 10-14 hour time as estimated. It was really foggy on top, and by fog, I mean clouds that were flying by at something like 100 mph. The wind hitting us was around 40-60 mph and really gusty, but the constant wind just out 100 ft from the top looked like it was from out of an airplane, clouds just whizzing past.
So I threw a frisbee off from the top, as promised, and I don't know where it went, but I think it was the furthest I've ever thrown, because it had a long ways down to go and it had a lot of wind to catch. And the highest I've ever been is 14,162 ft now. (besides airplanes, they don't count)
And I took a lot of pictures:
Oh, I also went biking with rachel before we climbed...

1 comment:

Matt said...

Awesome with the disc throwing. Did you sign it/leave a phone number? It'd be interesting to see if it could ever make it back to you.