Timberline Trail with Tonya!

To prep for our upcoming hike in Iceland, we decided to do the Timberline Trail in early August and invited our friend and all-time favorite adventure buddy, Tonya, to by a plane ticket out to do it with us.

The Timberline Trail is a ~40 mile thru-hike around the base of Mt. Hood, and it is amazing! The area had a heavier-than-usual snowfall this year, so much of the trail was still buried until late summer. We really lucked, by early August the wildflowers were in full bloom which made the already epic trail that much more incredible. Continue reading “Timberline Trail with Tonya!”

Peru Day 10: Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu!

Our final day with our guide and trekking group  was in Machu Picchu, where Alex took us on a two hour tour and told us about the function and significance of the city. It was a beautiful day, with no rain and clouds that moved through so fast we had different views of the city all day. After our tour, Tish, Tonya and I hiked up Huayna Picchu which offered incredible views of Machu Picchu and the valley. The stairs up to the top of Huayna Picchu were so steep that we were on our hands and feet for much of it! We had fun taking pictures along the way and pausing to take it all in. The trek was amazing, learning about the local culture, the history of the Incan people and meeting our fellow trekkers and Alex was an incredible experience.

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Peru Day 9: Salkantay Trek – La Playa to Aguas Calientes

Start: La Playa 2,064m (6,771 ft)

Finish: Aguas Calientes 2,050m (7,986 ft)

Trek Time: 9.5 hours (including a short lunch)

The final morning of our trek began earlier than usual, and it was our first day starting out in pouring rain. We packed our stuff in the tent and did our best to keep things from getting wet and muddy, had a quicker than usual breakfast and then said goodbye to our chefs. Despite the rain and impending 3 hour ascent, everyone was in great spirits as we headed out on our last day of hiking.

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Peru Day 8: Salkantay Trek – Collpapampa to La Playa

Start: Collpapampa 2,850m (9,350 ft)

Finish: La Playa 2,064m (6,771 ft)

Trek Time: 7 hours

Our third day was our easiest for both distance and terrain. We woke up to another sunny day, and had a delicious breakfast of omelets and quinoa porridge (which is an amazingly healthy “on the go” breakfast and super easy to make by the way!). We said goodbye to our horsemen; they took our gear to our third and final campsite via van and then headed home as their town was nearby.

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Peru Day 7: Salkantay Trek – Suyroqocha to Collpapampa

Start: Suyroqocha 4,480m (14,698 ft)

Finish: Collpapampa 2,800m (9,186 ft)

Trek Time: ~8 hrs (including lunch)

“Buenos dias! Café or té?” Alex asked as he unzipped rain fly on our tent and handed us cups of coffee and coca tea before we even got out of our sleeping bags. After a freezing night, we woke to the sun shining bright and clear blue skies! Salkantay was out, with no clouds in sight. It was a beautiful day! After a pancake breakfast, we packed up the rest of our  gear and headed off to finish our ascent to the highest point of the trek – Salkantay Pass at 4,630m (15,190ft). Continue reading “Peru Day 7: Salkantay Trek – Suyroqocha to Collpapampa”

Peru Day 6: Salkantay Trek – Sayllapata to Suyroqocha

Start: Sayllapata 3,400m (11,154 ft)

Finish: Suyroqocha 4,480m (14,698 ft)

Trek Time: 8 hrs (including lunch)

We all woke with excitement when our alarm went off around 3:30a.m……Tish and I went downstairs to the lobby to get the last bit of work done before we lost internet for a week. Tonya joined us and we had a hearty breakfast and plenty of coffee and coca tea, then went back up to our room to put the final touches on packing. At 5, we met our guide, driver and the rest of the group in the lobby and we were headed to the trailhead! After a few hours in the car, we arrived at our starting spot. Alex, our guide, shared his coca leaves with us and taught us the proper way to get the juice out of them (which was similar to chewing tobacco). The coca leaves were supposed to help with altitude sickness and help keep us energized. We were all a little nervous to try it,  but rolled up the leaves and stuck them in our lips with gusto!

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Hiking Mt. Tam’s Eastern Peak: 10.1 miles, ~2,000 ft elevation gain

Last week, Tish and I finally made time to get out on the trail again and checked Mt. Tam’s highest point off our NorCal hike bucket list. We started at the Pantoll Ranger station and followed the Matt Davis Trail for just over 2 miles to the Hoo Koo e Koo Trail. The first 4ish miles were beautifully mellow trail over rolling hills through Redwood groves and Eucalyptus trees. We linked up to the Tamalpa Trail by way of Old Railroad Grade and Vic Haun Trails, at which point the trail gained about 1,000 feet of elevation over 1 mile. It was a steep climb, but offered amazing views the entire way up. We decided to follow a spur trail 400 ft to a vista, and despite the overgrown brush and obvious underused nature of the trail, we were rewarded with the best view on the entire hike!

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Hiking at Pt. Reyes National Seashore and Camping in Samuel P. Taylor State Park

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Fun map at store in Olema

On Tuesday Tish and I woke up in San Francisco (okay, actually it was Castro Valley, but we were staying there because we had a few errands to run in the City and around the bay….so…forgive me) and drove to Point Reyes National Seashore for a long hike followed by a night in our new tent in Samuel P. Taylor State Park.  We left a bit late to miss commuter traffic and got to the adorable little town of Olema around 10:15 and stopped at the store to have a cup of coffee and cappuccino before getting on the trail. We oogled over their delicious-looking ice cream cones and dreamed of how great they would taste after our long hike. After our coffee break we headed out on the Bear Valley Trail.  Continue reading “Hiking at Pt. Reyes National Seashore and Camping in Samuel P. Taylor State Park”