Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Go Or Don't Go

Do, or do not. There is no "try". Yoda in The Empire Strikes Back

Last weekend we were supposed to start a four day ski trip from Great Northern Mountain to Mount Thompson in the Badshots. We had friends from Vancouver who were finishing the Bonnington Traverse on Thursday, taking Friday as a rest day, and then our plans were to set off on the Great Northern traverse on Saturday and finish on Tuesday.

Our friends had found the Bonnington Traverse harder than expected and had experienced a mixed bag of weather ranging from sleet to snow, with fairly consistent white-outs. Each day was long and tiring for them as they arrived at each cabin and the end of the trip, late in the day.

When Friday rolled around and we checked the weather forecast, it was uniformly bad - two days of periods of rain and two days of showers. Not exactly weather conducive to traveling through the high mountains. The decision to can the traverse and do a couple of day trips around Nelson - where the forecast was much better - was fairly unanimous.

I was disappointed, as I had been looking forward to the traverse, but, after hearing how hard our friends had found the Bonnington, I wondered if it was not a wise decision. While I am sure our friends would have made the trip, I am also sure that Doug and I would have spent quite a bit of time waiting. Philosophically, I don't mind waiting, but I find it easier to do on day trips than overnight trips and good weather trips than bad weather trips. On overnight trips, I just want to keep moving at a smooth steady pace from morning until late afternoon and then take the big backpack off for good. In bad weather, I like to do the same. Standing waiting with a big backpack is uncomfortable and putting it on and off a dozen times a day is more tiring than keeping it on and holding a steady pace.

Turns out, the weather seemed far better than forecast, and, I am still wondering if we made the right decision, although I suspect I am the only one. Our friends were feeling tired after their four day trip and seemed very pleased with the two day trips we did. Doug hates doing trips in bad weather, and, I, well, I second guess most of my decisions so some endless neurotic analyzing should only be expected.

Descending Ymir Mountain on Sunday

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