Three Days, Three Hikes, and One Heavy Backpack

The last time I was out in these parts, there were small hints that things were about to turn around, and with that, came hope that better days were to come. That was back in 2009 and a lot has changed since then. Things didn't turn out exactly the way I would have liked and recently, reality decided to remind me of this yet again. So like a lone wolf, I took off from Vancouver for a long weekend along the Sea-to-Sky Highway to re-energize myself with the one thing from those days that did come true: my move to the west coast.

Day 1: Joffre Lakes

Situated past Pemberton, Joffre Lakes Provincial Park is well known for the trail that shares its name. Joffre Lakes Trail takes you past three spectacular alpine lakes to what may be one of the most picturesque camping spots in British Columbia at the far end of Upper Joffre Lake.

There's nothing quite like just finding a big boulder to bask in the late summer sun while relaxing to the sounds of glacial melt making its way to the lake below.

Day 2:  Garibaldi Lake

The weather forecast called for sunshine and unseasonably hot temperatures but it couldn't have been more wrong. It was overcast, foggy, and cool. Irregardless, I followed through on my plan to hike up to Garibaldi Lake on the hope that weather conditions would improve.

Going back and forth, slowly up the mountain with very little to see but some trees in the mist, the expectation that the fog would burn off with the late morning sun was slowly fading away.

Upon finally reaching the outskirts of the lake, the promised views were no where to be seen

but hope was still there, and sure enough after about half an hour or so, the sun slowly peeked its way through the clouds, and the clouds were whisked away to reveal yet another amazing view.

And then almost as quickly as it cleared up, it disappeared again behind a curtain. With hope that this was just a momentary phenomenon, I stood my ground and did not scurry on back down into the forest, and just when my hope was fading while exploring the lakeshore, the far end of the lake started to clear, and within moments, it was like there was not a cloud in the sky. But this again was a tease, and now somewhat predictably, the veil covered Garibaldi Lake in less than a minute yet again. Well, at least it was great while it lasted.

Day 3: The Stawamus Chief

The Chief was on my to-do list since I learned about it prior to my last trip out here. It was a misty December back then, and looking at the trail, it was probably a good thing that I didn't try. But on this day, it was different. Partly sunny skies with only a bit of haze from a nearby forest fire afforded pretty nice views of Squamish and Howe Sound below.

Like the weather on the west coast, things change all the time. One moment, things are calm and beautiful. The next moment, they can turn foggy and grey with no sense of direction. Looking back to the past, I regret letting external forces beyond my control get the better of me. I have to learn to accept those things I cannot change and just enjoy the moment for what it is without any further thought. In my travels, I have seen many interesting and unique things. While I doubt I'll ever call anything awesome again, I suppose there are plenty of other words to describe the things I'll come to appreciate and love. And with that, my journey through life continues one step at a time...

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