Explore. Dream. Discover. (Mark Twain)

06 February 2010

"Hiking" in "Spain"

Left: My view last Saturday. Right: My view this Saturday.

Let me explain...

This past Saturday, I went hiking with a group of SLU friends. Being the overpacker and hiking novice that I am, I wore a sweatshirt and a fleece, and brought a light jacket. The Madrid weather was in the 50s, but I am glad I was over-prepared...

...Because we hiked in the snow! It was definitely not very "Spanish"!

Our "hiking trail" was a little lodge, sledding hill, and haven for hardcore mountainmen. We traveled on two different trains from Madrid to way up in the mountain range of Los Cotos, between Madrid and Segovia. We were very surprised when we saw snow outside of the window on the other side of a tunnel!

Part of the group: Nathan, Laura, Zach, Elizabeth, Adam

(maybe Nathan wasn't so game...?)

Fellow mountaineers, appropriately wearing hats, gloves, and coats.

We came to hike, and hiking is what we set out to do... we were not about to let our trainfare go to waste! We found the information center, grabbed some maps, and head out on the trail. A sign, warning those with a lack of experience and proper equipment to NOT CONTINUE, waved farewell to us as we started up the hill. With our tennies, sweatshirts, and bewildered faces, we definitely stuck out as American students!

I think they should have just put "Yes, you guys..."

Winter scene.

Visibility was low, but the scenery we could see was gorgeous! I felt I was really connecting to home... I was in a snowy paradise while my people in the States were getting snow too!

Sora and Zach, frozen solid.

We thought these treetops looked like crosses, so perhaps we were in
a graveyard for American students who never made it?

Nathan is sad because he thinks he might be next.

Walking off a cliff? On flat ground? We never really knew for certain!

The bad thing about the snow and low visibility is we never knew what was surrounding us! It gave the whole hike an adventurous and eerie feel... like we were walking into the unknown...

Intense hikers: with poles, strappy backpacks, and spiky shoes!

We were frequently passed by skiers swoosh, swoosh, swooshing down the hill.

Myself, Laura, Susan, Elizabeth, and Sora

Frozen hair!

We got a little turned around on our trail, and had to backtrack. At this point, Nathan, Laura, and I were a bit frozen and decided to head back to lodge. The rest of the group ventured on, and discovered a cliff. Of course, I was told I missed the best part and that it was very cool.

But while they were facing the treacherous winds on the cliff, I was sipping on a cup of hot chocolate in the lodge :)

Warming up by the fire.

Extreme pictures... I am sure they will be adding ours up soon.

They make one tasty and hot cup of hot chocolate!

On the train rides back, still thawing and worn out, we all agreed it was an excellent adventure. Sora said they met other SLU students who had gone hiking... but theirs was on normal terrain with regular temperatures. She said they were very jealous of our awesome pictures and daring tales!

1 comment:

  1. One word to describe this blog post: EPIC! I wish I could have gone on this adventure with you guys. The frozen hair was my favorite part. My brother went to Colorado, and they had the tree top pictures too....so wild! What did the temperature feel like?