Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Climbing on George

Today was one of the warmest days we've had in some time. A tad windy, but bright and clear - a perfect day to climb a mountain. A group of grade 7 and 8 students along with their teachers headed out this morning to climb King George. I was asked to go along since I was the only staff member in the group that had made the trip last year. I joked that this would be the blind leading the blind but the students of course knew the way like the back of their hands so it was a great day out.

We got a lift in the school bus out to the dump where we set off for the top. I found it a lot muddier than last year and I was thanking myself for packing an extra pair of socks by the end of the day. At least I didn't need to put on the snow pants I had packed along with me. It will be awhile before I have a chance to get back up there so I thought my pictures turned out quite well if I do say so myself.

I had to slide down some hard-packed snow on my backside to reach this inuksuk sitting out on a ledge. Luckily I stopped sliding before I reached the edge.

Looking north toward Victor Bay.

This far up you can see for miles.

I had hoped to get a picture of this large cairn at the summit last year but there was too much sloppy snow to walk through. Conditions were more favourable this time. I brought along my GPS and took an altitude reading at the cairn - 1830 feet. By comparison, the CN Tower is 1815 feet high. Wow, we were way up there!

Arctic Bay in the distance. Note the dark line ringing the bay - the ice is very slowly starting to soften up. In the extreme bottom right on this shot is the town dump and sewage lagoon where we started off.

Looking south toward Adams Sound.

I've always been captivated by the rock formations in the area.

This is a view from about half way up looking west. Arctic Bay is on the left and Victor Bay is on the right-hand side of this shot (north).

Another one of the large hills we passed on the way to the top.

All in all a fantastic day - and my knees never complained the whole time.


Graham said...

Wow, great views, and I love the inuksuks. Any idea how long a hike (distance) it is, or how much elevation gain there is?

Way Way Up said...

Its about a 3km hike to reach the base but I'm not sure the total distance of the hike we took. Arctic Bay is just a few feet above sea level and he summit is around 1800 feet. The route we took involved slopes of around 50-60 degrees at some points over loose rock and sand so you really have to watch your footing. I went base to summit in just under 90 minutes or so. When I hiked up it in August '06 it took me a little over 2 hours to summit and about 40 minutes to descend.

Curtis Groom said...

Excellent photo's, hopefully well worth the discomfort these photo's usually cause up here. One question, did you recently change your camera, your image's seem to be of a much better quality than those of a year ago?
Take Care

Way Way Up said...

Thanks Curtis, I was quite pleased with the results if I do say so myself. I'm still using the same camera I brought up with me last year - Cannon Powershot A430. I'm not sure why the difference in quality. Could be the lower light levels we had for some or the cold. I like to think its mostly due to my increasing comfort level with the technology.

Dr. J. said...

Beautiful pictures. I can't wait to get back to that big open sky!!
I use the Canon Powershot G7, so now that I know you use a similar camera, I'll hit you up for some tips!
Dr. J.