I shouldn't have been so bold in my previous post to say that that picture I took was my last smile of the trip. I stand corrected. It was my 1st smile of three. The second smile happened when I reached the Yurt that I had cross-country skiied 4.5 miles up to at the top of Millcreek Canyon. And the third and final smile happened Sunday morning when I was back in my car exiting the canyon.
There is a yurt at the top of Millcreek Canyon that I have never noticed. I'm pretty sure about 90% of Utah's population hasn't noticed it either. The only ones that have are the crazy people that cross country ski or snowshoe 4.5 miles uphill. I became one of those crazy people this weekend. To give you an insight into my thinking, I have transcribed below my thoughts as I made the trek Saturday night.
At the gate: I wish I could magically be transported right now
Mile 0.02: I wonder how far we have gone? For sure 1/2 a mile.
Mile 0.04: I am not going to make it. I am dying!
At this point, I stopped and took of my jacket and fleece. I had been told that I would really only need one of those UnderArmor shirts - but my rational was, "i am always cold, i'll need more". I was wrong. I admit.
Mile 0.05: My back hurts
Mile 0.06: How long have we been skiing? For sure we have gone a mile. I must have missed the mile marker.
Mile 1: (Expressed out loud) WTF? Mile marker 1?? MILE MARKER 1! We've only gone 1 mile!!??
Mile 1-2: This one mile stretch included a variety of emotions and thoughts. Some highlights were; What if I get raped? What if someone is hiding in the snow and tackles me and I can't run away because I have these skis strapped to my feet? My back hurts. My nose is running and my snot is freezing on my face.
I soon adopted the thought of only thinking in mile increments. If I could make it to mile 2, I could make it to mile 3. Then if I made it to mile 3, I could make it to mile 4 and then I was practically there. This thinking miraculous helped me for I soon was in the 'zone". I have always heard about people getting "in the zone", but I have never experienced it myself.
Mile 2 - 3 was awesome. I only stopped to adjust my pack once because it just wasn't fitting me right. I was in the zone and moving.
At Mile 4.something my body stopped. It was done. I had zero energy. Since I am not wise and therefore didn't think, I hadn't eaten one thing since the start of this trek, which meant my body was depleted of all it's energy. Kenzi gave me candy, Sammy took my pack and I somehow made it to the top.
And there it was, a beacon shining in the night. The yurt. I smiled and said, "it's the most beautiful thing I have ever seen!"
Through the snoring, mice (seriously) and no sleeping pad, I miraculously made it through the night. I had shared a bunk with Steve and in the morning when he got up, I rolled over to his sleeping pad and was all, "OH MY GOSH! So this is what it would have been like to sleep on a pad?" It was at this moment that learned that the boys had taken bets on whether or not I would want to come back to the yurt. They all said I wouldn't. And I agreed. My friends know me so well.
The trip down the mountain was the much easier than going up. But it pretty much was the scariest thing I have ever done. No doubt I biffed it no less than 10 times. I'm surprised I didn't break an arm. And soon, there it was. The parking lot. Happiest day of my life.
I made it. All in one piece. Amazing. No lie this was the hardest thing I have ever done. But surprisingly, I think I would actually do it again. The crazy is back. I promise I will complain less next time. Because really, how could you not want to kill yourself to see this: