Sunday, May 11, 2014

West Coast Road Trip

At the beginning of May, Kyle and I headed west to escape the lingering snow. We spent 10 days riding and climbing all over the "best coast". The first three days were spent on the Sunshine Coast for the Coaster XC and DH races (for me) and camping, shuttling and beers (for Kyle, and me a bit). I raced both the Marathon XC (4th) and the DH (3rd) on the same bike - my awesome Specialized Enduro Carbon Expert, and won first in the Overall category. It was wet and muddy out there, and boy was it a blast! A highlight was going to the "codfather" for a codfather poutine at the end of the weekend. Fries drenched in seafood chowder and we of course had to get some fish on the side.
Sunshine Coaster DH race - I raced the Works Category (XC marathon and DH on the same bike) 

After the weekend of racing, we had a late start as it was still raining. We rolled into Squamish just in time for lunch, dropped off the climbing gear at Dan's (thanks for letting us use your place as a storage locker all week!) and went for and xc ride in the highlands.
Trailhead lunch
Hiding out from the rain
Tracks from Hell
Mossy loam fest 
The sun was drying everything out so we went to check out Diedre on the Apron of the Chief. It was soaked. Instead we went over to Smoke Bluffs and climbed a few routes at the Neat and Cool crag. Got to love multi-sport days!
Gearing up to be rejected on Diedre
Climbing at Neat and Cool - our first trad leading of the year 
View of Squamish from the crag
Looking down Cat Crack
 The next morning we got up at the crack of 9 and went to climb Star Chek, a 3 pitch sport route above the Cheakamus River. We met some VOC'ers on the rappel down which was quite exciting. I have been wanting to climb this route for a while, just because it looks so amazing. After Star Chek we climbed a bit a Murrin (Kyle lead the World's Toughest Milkman) and then went up to Whistler to ride with Landon.
Rappel down to the river
Kyle following up the first pitch (5.8)
Me following up pitch 2 (5.7)
Selfie on the last pitch (5.9)

 On the Wednesday, we finally got our chance to go up Diedre. It was still a bit wet, but good enough for us! We also added on 2 pitches at the top - Broomstick Crack which I thought was the best climb of the entire trip! The top of the chief looks so close from there. That will be the next big project I think.
Even the approach to diedre takes some skills 
Kyle making his way up the crack
Belay station on Broomstick Crack
Great day on the apron!
Rappel down off Broomstick Crack. Anyone know why this orange rope is fixed there?
 We took the afternoon off for a well deserved nap in the sun at Alice Lake before meeting Dan for an XC ride in the highlands. Then he made us dinner! Yummy.
Sleepy time for Kyle
Alice Lake in the sun
We kind of took over Dan's house with our bikes...
 Thursday was supposed to be a rainy day so we went to climb early(ish) at Octopus' Garden in Smoke Bluffs. After leading a very scary 5.7, we switched to top-roping for the rest of the morning and had a great time crack climbing until the rain started. 
Arriving at the Octopus' Garden, the farthest crag I could have picked
Kyle leading Edible Panties (5.7)
After having such an action packed week, we decided against another ride in the rain and instead went to the Britannia Mine for a mine tour. 
Kyle in his element with a hard hat on
I always wondered what was inside that huge building, now I know!
Steep steps!
Friday, we went back to North Vancouver to visit with my parents and our friends. We met Denton early and got a few shuttle laps in before he had to go to work. That afternoon, we took Rozzi up Fromme for a quick lap on the new and improved Espresso. So much fun!  
View from the Cypress lookout
 Saturday was a bit more of a lazy day and we got to sleep in. In the afternoon we did a big ride on Fromme with David, Tyler, Ashley and Rozzi, followed by dinner with my parents.
Seventh Secret with some NS fog
Rozzi loves to come biking with us
On Sunday, we were able to spend mother's day with my mom before packing up and heading home. What a trip!

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