The title and body of this post are the products of Redline Guide Mike Maciel. We’re going to kick back and post up what Mike created. The synopsis is this, however: Mike led two days of hiking with one returning guest and his two daughters. On the first day they took on and conquered North Twin Mountain (4759′). On the second day they went after the formidable Mt Adams (5797′). Take it away, Mike…
Some of us are fortunate enough to live here in this beautiful place. We train in these mountains non-stop. Our “mountain legs” may have an off day once in a while but unless we are dealing with an injury we generally know what we are going to get.
A many-time returning guest was back this week to continue his quest for the 48. He only gets to visit a few times a year and the rest of the time he lives on an island with its high point a whopping 311 feet above sea level. Could he run up and down this hill 18.6398714 (he appreciates precision) times a day to cover the elevation of 5797 foot Mount Adams? Sure. In theory he could. But there’s work and family and Auggie the Doggie to consider as well as wondering if that’s the best way to spend your 73rd trip around the sun.
In my mind it’s way more impressive when people come here without mountain legs once in a while to hike our summits. That’s hard. One of his daughters joined from Southern California, the other from the Midwest. On Monday we stood atop North Twin. It was number 35 for dad, number 4 for Midwest and number 1 for Cali.
Yesterday we made it to 5000 feet and our guest knew it just wasn’t going to be his day for Adams. Some of the hardest decisions we will ever make are whether to turn back or try harder. By the time we reached Appalachia, he was drained and we all knew it was the right call.
The list doesn’t give partial credit, but we do. Because we know that a .5 or an asterisk doesn’t represent a bad day. It represents knowing you did your absolute best. It’s smiles and hut snacks. Jokes about rappelling. Family controversies. Data comparisons and synchronized watches. Lengthy discussion of proper trail candy and what to order for dinner. It’s a great day with your daughters sharing one of your favorite places and seeing their faces light up when they see the alpine for the first time. You know, the things that really matter. —Mike M
Of course, shutterbug that he is, Mike also provided these stunning images. Enjoy.
Day 1: Taking on North Twin Mountain
Day 2: Mount Adams Attempt