At 6am the sun was shining brightly on the west slope and the skies were clear. But by 8:30am the weather had clouded up and was threatening rain. After breakfast we packed our survival gear and a lunch and were walking back up the west slope by 10am. This time we headed west from the top and angled up the slope towards the ridgeline. We saw a single Dall sheep across the drainage. By 11 it was raining steadily. We tried to make a run all the way to the ridge, but the lichen-covered rocks became very slippery in the rain and we decided to turn back. My right boot sprung a leak and I quietly swore at myself for trying to squeak one more trip out of those tired old soles. And the trails were bad, and I felt half-mad, but I swore I would not give in. Appologies to R. Service.
Back in camp the clouds had descended and the rain had set in for a good long pour. So we each grabbed a little food and holed up in our tents for the afternoon. It rained all afternoon and into the evening, sometimes turning to sleet, pounding hail and even snow. At 3:30pm it was 57F in the tent. Everyone stayed in their tents from 12:30p until 8:30p. It was still raining at 8:30p when Steve got out and offered to heat up a meal for everyone in the rain. That shamed us all into climbing out, in the rain, and fixing our evening meal. Awesome Santa Fe Pasta for me. +2. Very low clouds everywhere. A group of four caribou cows and two calves ran through camp and up the west trail. The rain stopped long enough for us to clean up for dinner and secure camp for the night. Scotch, read, sleep.
|Steve & Sandy tried out a brand new tent on this trip. Sandy was a little (a lot!) nervous about relying on a few ounces of nylon & mesh that they had not had a chance to field test in advance.|
|But a few days at the Caribou Cry Camp quelled all fears. The MSR Hubba Hubba II stood up very well to all rain, hail and considerable wind. It has 2 doors and 2 large vestibules. It is extremely roomy inside given it only weighs 2 kg. As for set-up, Sandy & Steve found it to be the easiest/fastest tent they've ever put up. There are lots of internal pockets and places to string lines. Sandy's main disappointment was with the unsporty shape of the tent. Looking rather like a green egg left on the hillside after Easter, it's appearance belies the fact that it's design handles the elements like a champ and provides maximum comfort.|
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