Thursday, August 03, 2006

As the ascent continued, we slowly entered the cloud sitting atop the mountain ... which is kind of cool because, well, you're entering a cloud!

But it does offer logistical difficulties.

And also provides something of a disappointment when actually making the summit -- having just climbed a mountain, you would like to be able to reward yourself with a spectacular vista. This time around however, not so much.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the view from the top of Gros Morne Mountain:

And just to prove that I did in fact climb the damn thing:

At this point, the various groups that had all made the ascent had more or less telescoped, some moving on ahead and some falling behind. Kristen and I had more or less fallen in with the eight people, Torontonians all, who had come with the guides. Or at least, we ate our lunch on the summit in fairly close proximity, and given the opacity of the fog and our nervousness about finding the trail down, we lingered until they departed and we trailed them. At which point we started talking with some of the people in the group, and over the course of the descent sort of got absorbed into it.

Emerging from the fog, we encountered some spectacular scenery that effectively made up for the surreal whiteness of the summit.

Across the steep valley was another set of flat-topped hills and mountains -- and if you look closely at thefollowing picture, you can see a glacial pond feeding a thin waterfall.

Also -- a moose!

I have to say -- the descent ended up being far more painful than the ascent. Going up was strenuous and something of a good cardio workout ... going down was an exercise in feeling my knees get increasingly sore evey time they bent.

But we made it! After Gros Morne, Signal Hill is a mere jaunt.

And we made friend with some very cool people in the process ... the group of eight and the two guides, Wayne and Clint (seriously) pretty much adopted us on the downslope, and before all was done we'd been invited to their seafood cookout courtesy of their bed & beakfast and tour group. So after a recuperative shower and change of clothes, we headed up the road for a sumptuous meal of mussels, scallops, salmon and cod, all fresh-out-of-the-sea ... which after the meals we'd been having was like being given a fresh food high. It was utterly sublime.

So, this concludes the Gros Morne Diaries segment of the bog ... I hope it was enjoyable, and we turn back to the regularly scheduled personal trivia, philosophical maunderings and political screeds offered in this space.

1 comment:

Penny Shagwell said...

Loved the pictures. My family's from NF, but I only lived there for a very brief period of time. Never made it to Gros Morne.

Congrats on making it to the top!