Posted in Hiking

Mount Albert Edward

In recent summers past, I spent almost every weekend at some crag honing my climbing skills. For a multitude of reasons I gave up outdoor climbing this year, the main reason being that I needed more time to train for trekking in Nepal this October. As luck would have it, a friend (we’ll call him ‘W’) started his deferred salary leave (the same program that is allowing me 6 months off with pay this winter) in May and planned to spend the summer living out of his van in Strathcona Park, here on Vancouver Island. I haven’t done a multi-day hiking trip since the early 90’s, so I got the gear and organized which weekends I would meet up with him. To save you from having to read a very long blog post, I have separated each of the trips into its own post. Lucky for you, my memory is also terrible, so these should be short entries.

Trip 1 – Mount Albert Edward (June 17-19) 2093 M (6th highest peak on Vancouver Island)

I had no idea what to expect on this trip but after a short hike from the Mount Washington parking lot, we hit snow and I started getting a little concerned as to what I was getting into. I have always vowed that I NEVER wanted to camp in the snow, but when we arrived at Circlet Lake, there was so much snow that the bear caches were still buried – I guess I was about to experience camping in the snow! It was cold and windy – my hands were so frozen that I couldn’t even get them into my gloves, let alone help set up the tent. We had a quick dinner and found ourselves cozy in our sleeping bags by 7PM.

Not quite what I was expecting for my first multi-day hiking trip

The morning was cold, but thankfully not as windy. I can’t remember how long it took us to get to the summit, but it was a super fun journey there, using an ice axe for the first time so I didn’t slide down the side of the mountain and relying on W’s GPS and rolling snowballs in front of us so that we didn’t walk off a cliff – there was zero visibility.

This is what zero visibility looks like

When we were stopped for lunch, 3 runners approached us, which was humbling and made me feel way less hard-core. They were unable to summit due to the lack of visibility and sketchy “whomps” of mounds of snow dropping around us, but we made it and W explained to me what we would be looking at had we been able to see.

Having lunch while being passed by three runners wearing shorts and running shoes

A little sad to miss the view, but super happy to have completed the hike – I was now hooked. We stayed one more night at Circlet Lake and then hiked out the next day, of course with clear skies and sun shining on the summit. I can’t wait to do this again next year.

Perfect view of Mt. Albert Edward on the left as we were leaving


I'm off on my first travel adventure since my 20's. This blog is intended to keep my friends and family up-to-date while I'm away.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s