Camping day 2 involved a challenging hike to the top of Yeoward Mountain in Beautiful British Columbia, one craft activity when we limped back into camp and then going to bed at the same time as Aa.-girl. Worn out indeed!
We were up at 6am to try to beat the heat on our long hike. This was a change from the last 2 weeks as Aa. has been sleeping in to ~8am (so wonderful after the 5:30-6am awakenings before that) (I can't complain too much though because Aa.-girls Mama lives upstairs and more often than not she'll just go straight up and wake up Mama for breakfast) Love Mama! So either Aa. is in Vacation Mode or she's having a growth spurt.
We started the hike at 8am and promptly became separated from the group due to some mis-communication. So with 30 lbs of hiking pack and 2 year old on my back I was plodding as fast as I could to try to catch up with most of the people I figured were ahead of us. Some backtracking and attempt to use tracking skills from watching "Mantracker" on the National Geographic channel occurred. It was quite frustrating and a little unnerving not knowing which paths to follow. Some ground would not give up it's secrets as to wether any hiking boots had tread upon it. I became reserved to just hike alone with Aa.-girl and find our own way to the top. (There was some two finger loud whistling and some yelling at the top of lungs but to no avail) At last we came around a corner and there was Grandma and some of her women friends taking a break! Yay, yay yay!! We had gone the correct way! We then had a well deserved break and Aa. hiked for about 20 minutes on her own two legs which was a welcome rest for me. I felt as light as a feather after lugging her around up the mountain for an hour at top speed.
A couple of hours later found us in an alpine meadow teeming with beautiful flowers. So wonderful! The picture doesn't really do it justice.
After a well earned lunch atop some lichen covered rocks, we made our way ever upwards, Aa. hiking on her own again. She became inspired to frolic in the flowers.
A little further up and we came to a patch of snow! Aa. was so excited and didn't want to leave the snow to finish the hike. We inticed her by suggesting that there may be more snow patches up higher on the mountain... and there was! At the very top was another patch which was special because it was watermellon snow. This is snow that has a pink tinge from an algae that grows on it in alpine regions and smells like fresh watermellon. I'd always wanted to see it and there it was. It smelled wonderful and made me wish for some watermellon to eat. When we pointed out to Aa. that the snow was pink and smelled like watermellon she exclaimed her patented "YEEEAAAAHHH!!!"
The view from a few hundred meters from the top.
We marked our accomplishment with an inukshuk.We made! 3.5 hours and 2130Meters up! Now we have to go back down! I'm quite proud to say I carried 30lbs of kid all the way up the mountain. Many people asked if I wanted help but I was headstrong and determined to do it. (Boy did I pay for it later... and the next day and the next day and....)
Gorgeous Alpine flowers
The most precious thing about having Aa-girl with me on the hike was that; unlike me who has my eye on the goal ahead, she never forgets to stop and smell the flowers...
Once I limped back to the campsite (literally) we decided to do an easy and fun craft again from the book "Camp Out" while dinner was being prepared. It is called "Fern Smash T-Shirt". One plain shirt, a piece of cardboard the width and length of the body of the shirt to slip inside of it, a few choice leaves, a piece of paper and a blunt rock for smashing and you're ready to go.
You just slip the cardboard in the shirt to prevent the back of the shirt from being printed, lay some fresh leaves in a nice arrangement on the front of the shirt, lay a piece or paper over the leaves and start smashing the leaves with the rock while making sure to smash each part of the leaves while keeping them from moving around.
We were surprised at how well it turned out. I neglected to suggest to Aa.-girl that she wear her art smock while doing our camping art activities and she got paints from the leaf printing onto the shirt. It turned out to not be very water soluble paint so now she has a fern smash t-shirt with some leaf print paint dabs. It will be a fun reminder of a wonderful camping trip!