The Grouse Grind – Vancouver, BC

August 24th 2015

After a fantastic week on board the Disney Wonder I disembarked in Vancouver.  The week had been so enjoyable, not just because I had got to meet all the princesses and Micky and Minnie but because I had been able to do some pretty epic hiking.  I was kind of exhausted!  However there was to be no rest for me today.

I dumped my things in the left luggage situation at the port and met with two of my favourites, Drew and Colleen Defour.  We met originally when we worked on a cruise ship together and have not been able to get rid of each other since.

Drew got in touch and said that they were hiking up a mountain the day I got off the Wonder and would I like to join…of course I said yes but I wasn’t quite sure what was in store.  We were going on an ‘adfriendture’ ©.

The Grouse Grind is a 1.8m trail up the face of Grouse Mountain and during that distance you gain 2,800 feet, so it is very, very steep.  Like, very steep.

Grouse Grind - Vancouver-3

We got the bus to the start of the trail and began making our way.  Right from the start it was challenging.  Much of the path is made up steps that have been cut into the hill or installed by some rather brave workpeople but in places the steps are not quite as solid as they could be and certainly not very even.  In some places you are just climbing up tree roots.

Grouse Grind - Vancouver-2

I am pretty proud of the time we clocked up.  We made it to the finish in about 1 hour and 24 minutes, 6 minutes below the average but I was astounded to find out that the fastest time is 29 minutes and 37 seconds for the men and 30 minutes and 4 seconds for the women.  I mean, what the hell?! Are those people superhuman.

Grouse Grind - Vancouver-4

The Ground Grind was the single most difficult hike I have done in as long as I can remember (and I had just hiked to a glacier in Alaska!).  I reached the top and my legs were like jelly.  We managed to run across the finish line but barely and I was completely drenched in sweat! I am glad that I had spare clothes to change into or else the people on the Amtrak back to Seattle would not have been happy.

It was a great sense of achievement and a great chance to spend time with Drew and Colleen on such an ‘adfriendture’©.

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