Gros Morne Mountain - What a hike!!!!
Trip Start Aug 13, 2009
53Trip End Oct 15, 2009
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Saturday (Aug 29) Staying at Candlelight Inn - Usual B&B breakfast - ( far too high in sugar and fat!) then headed out for the long awaited assault on Gros Morne mountain. Cool day but no rain and a bit of sunshine at times. An easy trail in for the first few kilometers (approx hour and a half) then reached the ‘decision’ point. Signage advised to turn around and head back if “weather looked bad/not confident to hike very strenuous mountain terrain” etc. We looked up and far off in the distance could see a thin line of earlier hikers creeping up the side of what appeared to be an almost vertical mountain side. With some trepidation and in somewhat sobered spirits we proceeded cautiously. The next couple of hours involved a tedious and methodical assault on what turned out to be the most challenging climb either of us has ever faced. The climb up was relentless and seemingly endless
However it was with a great deal of satisfaction and pride that we ultimately made it to the summit and posed for pictures. The reward was well worth the effort and sweat. The description “breathtaking view” is, in my opinion, a much overused term in our culture. However, I feel that for once, this is the only way to describe what we were rewarded with when we looked down from the top of this summit. Having left essentially sea level we were now looking down from a vantage point approximately half a mile higher. The views are hard to describe and pictures we took cannot truly do justice. Deep, inland fjords, green cloaked mountainsides and far off, the unbroken blue of the Gulf of St Lawrence stretched to the horizon. Truly a reward that far outweighed the sacrifice! We were glad to have several layers of clothing on. At the beginning of the hike, we quickly peeled off several layers but by the time we reached the summit, we were glad to don all layers and pull out our gloves.
The climb back down took another four hours (including lunch on the trail) on a more extended but gentler route around the back side of the mountain
Our accommodation for the night is Ocean Acre Inn B&B - Hannah is our hostess. She and her husband, Clarence, come each summer from Nova Scotia and open this B&B. Her daughter, Dorothy, who is a teacher in Labrador, seems to assist with the management of the inn, as well. A simple accommodation filled with ‘down-home’ hospitality. We have concluded that the ‘star’ rating given to accommodations is irrelevant - you simply can’t rate hospitality.
Something we learned today….Gros Morne means gloomy / sad mountain. I guess the frequent lingering fog over the mountain does seem to create a gloomy feeling.