Hiking in snow was more difficult that we had imagined. Much more difficult. Was it the snow shoes that we had decided to ditch in the parking lot? In the wake of a rash coffee high, we decided that we would be fine without them and tucked them away safely in the trunk. Now, we were stuck with our stubborn and questionable caffeine-induced decisions. Nevertheless, we trudged on, post-holing through the snow en route to Mt. Shasta. Two good steps on top of the snow, the next footstep plunging you thigh deep into mush. It was slow going, but spirits were high. It was a bluebird day on Shasta, our engineered glacier goggles were working perfectly (Sunskis + duct tape = magic), and we had plenty of sugary snacks to go around.
Eventually we made it to basecamp, winded from the altitude and elevation, intimidated by the steep slope that we would be facing in the wee hours of the morning, but happy to be at a temporary stopping point. We dug out spots in the snow for our tent, feasted on pre-packaged Indian food and pounds of Trader Joe’s chocolate, and attempted to boil endless amounts of water before tucking in for a few hours of sleep.
Up at 2 am, we caffeinated and started our vertical ascent. Many slow, headlamp-aided steps later and the sun began to slowly illuminate the surrounding peaks. I am and forever will be that person on a trip who insists everyone stops to look at the sunset, sunrise, piece of moss, mountaintop, waterfall, or banana slug. But did you really look? Are you sure? OhmygoodnessLOOK. Guys do you see this sunrise?! I was in full form this morning. The summit of Shasta cast a deep red and orange shadow across the mountain ranges below us, leaving everyone (literally and metaphorically) breathless.
After many more leftrightleftrights we made it to the summit, but opted to bail without a summit-selfie due to high winds and frigid fingers. I promised myself that I would buy the fanciest gloves possible if they would keep my hands from ever feeling like this again (…a promise I have yet to act on – sorry fingers!).
After glissading down at what felt like lightspeed, we packed up and continued our post-holing back out to the car. After a chilly lake plunge and beers, we rolled back to the Bay. In hindsight, I would say that Sasha Teninty and Shasta Trinity hit it off and plan on staying in touch for a long time.
Written by Sasha, Sunski Community + Content Manager.