Blue Mountain Night Hike 1999

Eleven of us gathered at Tim's on the Bedford highway, to continue the Bruce Duffy traditional night hike. Last night's hike led us to climb Blue Mountain, a hill just under 500ft. off the Kearney Lake Rd. Un-seasonal high of 12C, during the day, turned the approach road into a river of mud. You start out hiking on this dirt road, trying to pick your spots, where to place your feet, to refrain from sinking into your ankles in soft mud. After about 20 yards at this pace, you just say the hell with it, and plough through it.

Approximately 2 miles of this torture, we came to the trail, that takes you up Blue Mountain. Here, Bernie Levy volunteered to be the sweep, as Bill & Nancy Mills were slowed by the mud excursion. Twisting & turning we made our way up the mountain, only to find that most of the trail on the steepest part was covered in ice. Then out of the blue, someone commented, " I wonder what it's going to be like, getting back down" Upon reaching the top, the view was worth the effort, the lights from the city filled the entire eastern sky. Gordon began immediately to start the fire. He and Jerome brought dry wood from home, the only difference was, that Gordon invited his son Jeff along to carry it in. As soon as the fire was ablaze, we all dined on Norm's hot dogs (all beef) & Jerome's peanut butter & jam muffins. When we had finished stuffing our faces, Bernie & the Mills family arrived on top. After everyone was fed, we doused the fire, and began our trek down the mountain.

Everything was going smoothly until we hit the glacier trail, and then after slipping, sliding, creeping, & crawling we made it to the bottom without falling on our asses. By this time we had split up into 3 groups, Gordon, Bernie & Jeff were long gone ahead of us. B. Duffy suggested we wait for Bill & Nancy, along with Bruce Murphy who graciously stayed behind with them, down the icy area. All that was left to do, was to venture back to the cars, through the mud. However the temperature had dropped considerably, from the way in, and now the mud had started to freeze, and the firmness, made the hiking easier. Back home at 11:15PM, standing in my basement, I glanced down at my boots in amazement, surely these were not the boots, that I left in. Someone had to switch with me on the trail.

Wayne Banks