Friday, March 18, 2016

Hikes with Kids: Mount Thom in Chilliwack

view from the top of Mount Thom

A few weekends ago we knew the clouds would part (at least for a little while) on a Saturday morning and I practically ran the family out of the house to get a hike in. We haven't been hiking in the last few months due to rain, family obligations, or just general laziness, but this was a hike that promised to be both quick and yet challenging, and it lived up to that

Mount Thom is in Chilliwack which was a 35 minute drive for us each way because there was very little traffic. The site notes say that it only climbs 375 m in elevation, which I was surprised by, because that hike was, with the exception of maybe 2-3 small slopes, a very vertical climb. Maybe I was just huffing and puffing because we hadn't been out for awhile. It was a busy trail even though we left very early in the morning, but when we were descending the mountain around 11AM, there were probably 70+ people going up, so going early was better!

trying to find Cultus Lake from the top

This hike took our family roughly 2 hours- 1.5 hours climbing up and then we literally ran the entire way down in 30 minutes. I sometimes find the descent on a vertical climb to be a bit harder just because I'm more hesitant. I feel like I'm going to fall easier. I'm just old! However, on this run down the mountain, my knee that hurt back when I was a teenager and playing a lot of sports, starting hurting again. I hadn't felt that pain in over 10 years, so I quickly slowed my pace and iced my knee for a solid 2 hours back home. I haven't felt it since that day, but it did make me realize how foolish that probably was without any sort of training, and a long climb right before!

Ani loved this hike and she ran almost the entire way up the trail as well. We often had to call her name because we couldn't see her! Lukka, as usual, doesn't ever want to go on hikes, but when he's there, he enjoys himself immensely. There's a great view at the top of Mount Thom and you can see Cultus Lake--and it looks very small from up there. Parking in the neighborhood is a bit odd, and some of the jobsites are quite dirty right next to the trail, and a lot of dog-poop bags were left around on the trail, even though there were trash cans at the entrance, making it probably one of the more dirty trails we've been on. I don't know if I'd go back to this hike quickly, it was challenging and a great excuse to exercise while having fun, but it wasn't my favorite trail. Crowded and a bit dirty, I'd rather explore other areas before coming back to it


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