Monday, September 6, 2010

Grays Peak

Ephesians 1:17 "I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation."

Revelation: The act of disclosure or making known, more particularly, God's self-unveiling, his deliberate disclosure of true knowledge of himself and his purposes and actions on our behalf.
Grays Peak 14,270'
Who: Sarah Pasquel (my beautiful), Aaron "Lu" Lawler, "Tired" Alf
When: 09/06/10
Mileage: 7.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 3000'
Class 1 hike

This was the last day of hiking on our first 14ers trip...I learned many things. For starters, class 1 (easy) doesn't mean your in for an easy day. Grays was no different...this hike was long and tiring. Especially after spending the last two days reaching the summits of Quandary and the Decali...I also learned that you have to be patient...take your time...look around...breathe (if you can)...and take the opportunity to thank God for giving me this time with Sarah, Lu, the people I met along the trail and for continously revealing Himself to me in so many different ways. On this trip...God was everywhere. Now, I can't say he revealed any specefic outline or plan for my immediate future...but that's ok. That's not what God needed to teach me...On this trip, I was learning about perseverance...and that perseverance is a matter of process. God's plan...is on His time, not mine...and for that, I need perseverance. The hike up Grays was a small exercise on perseverance...so let us begin!

We stayed in Georgetown the night before and left the hotel 8 at 5:30am…we got the lower TH at 5:45am and parked my little Prius there. I was not going to attempt to drive my sedan up this gulch…which would have devoured my lovely Prius. So we started our hike from below and hoped to hitch a ride. We really, really hoped...because it would have added 4 more miles and several thousand feet to our already long day...So we walked up the dirt road with our thumbs up...

Fortunately, within 10 minutes, a couple picked us hitchhikers up and gave us a ride all the way to the Gray's Peak TH…so grateful...we just avoided our worst case scenario.

We began our hike around 6:30am…there were tons of people on this day (Labor Day). Which bothered me at first...but you know what...who cares, I'm on a mountain and not at my desk…

We were hoping to do the combo-Grays and Torrey's…However, after two consecutive days of hiking up 14ers…we could definitely feel the fatigue. And we literally were dropping to our knees before we even reached the base of the mountain.
Our plan was to summit Gray's first, via standard route and hike the ridge over to Torrey's Peak. We were definitely more tired today and our pace reflected it. We were sluggish...not as motivated as the days before...and really, really cold. But we kept on...there was no way we were going to leave without bagging at least one peak...nonetheless, we still found time to enjoy the views.
I will admit...we did a lot of stopping...and just sitting down.
We finally summited Gray's at 10:15 a.m. It took us quite a while…
This is where the trip became really interesting for us… our way up to Gray's we ran across a few folks who had already summited and had mentioned how their camelbak's had frozen up there within 10 minutes…surely they were lying right? Well, after finally gaining the top, we felt the winds…and boy they were fierce. 60 mph gusts, plus freezing temps made for a very uncomfortable Summit. I don't think I have ever been this cold…I've been in several feet of snow, ice storms, etc…and I never remember my hands hurting so bad (I was wearing gloves too!) My wife almost began to cry and my buddy Lu who was not wearing gloves could care less about the views and decided to run down the mountain. I don't know if a cold front came in, we were right under the jet stream, or if we were being babies (which I doubt since the other 20-30 folks up top did the same as us…) So if any of you were on the Gray's/Torrey's Peak Summit on Labor Day and know the answer, please share…





Does he look happy to you?
Nonetheless, we decided to skip Torrey's and head back down…it took us about 10 minutes to descend about 500 ft...we were sprinting down the mountain.

We finally completed the hike at noon, spent, headaches, and all. We finished this hike on fumes...


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