Sunday, August 14, 2016

Baynes Lake Relaxation

Jenn invited us to her parent's little slice of heaven on Baynes Lake for a weekend in mid July. Our climbing plans had fallen through due to the forecast and it was a rare treat to get away for some R&R. Upon arrival, Kyle and I went for a swim and Kyle promptly lost his wedding ring in the lake. What a disaster! We tried to look for it with headlamps but there was no way we were finding it in the dark. The next morning, Kyle was out on a paddleboard hunting for it without success. He was going to require some additional tools to help him in his hunt. 
Beautiful Baynes Lake as seen from the cabin porch
Ring hunting aside, Jenn, Cody, Kyle and I went for a delicious breakfast at the Baynes Lake farmers market before driving out to Kimberly to go biking. We got stopped on the highway for about ten minutes while a cattle drive crossed the road, an event I had never witnessed before that seemed to be more of a loosely organized social event on horseback riders than anything. It was fun watching the stubborn cows getting chased back into formation by the well trained dogs. The forecasted rain arrived as we were driving so we took a detour into town to check out a very soggy medieval festival in Kimberly as we waited for it to pass.
Cattle Drive
We caught a break in the rain and managed to squeeze in a ride at St. Mary's. Jenn and Cody kicked our butts on the single track climbs and we accidentally ended up on a double track fire-road for the descent instead of an actual bike trail. What a waste of energy! Fortunately the ride was salvaged by a fun little trail that took us back to the car, but I felt like the whole ride had been one big climb.
View point on the bike trail

Back at the cabin, Kyle and I spent ages sifting through thick weeds and muck looking for his ring. Kyle had purchased some dollar-store swimming goggles and a mesh garbage pail to help him strain through nasty detritus at the bottom of the lake but all we managed to do was clean up some weeds and stir up the water. Eventually we came to the conclusion that the ring was gone for good and abandoned the endeavor. We were able to relax and enjoy a campfire by the lake, and I went for a sunset paddleboard. Jenn had bought a "reverse smores" kit with oreo cookie biscuits and white chocolate. They were the best smores I have ever had!!
Getting the fire started
Evening glow
Making reverse smores, so good!
On Sunday we returned to St. Mary's to do some cragging. The crag is tiny but jam packed full of long sport routes. It also has the benefit of a 5 minute approach and a great view of St. Mary's Lake. Jenn and I took turns leading some of the fun low grade routes while Kyle put up top ropes on some of the 5.10 routes. It was hot on the wall in the full sun and the lake below looked tempting, but when Jenn and Cody jumped in it was freezing! 

Feeling accomplished for managing to do some riding, climbing and relaxing despite the dismal forecast and the lost ring, we said goodbye to Cody (who is firefighting in the Kootenays this summer and living in Baynes Lake) and returned to Calgary. Another successful summer weekend! Thanks Jenn and Cody!

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