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The hike back down to Skylight brook was speedy, with the trail now broken out and the snow on the tree branches now all knocked off. As we ascended back over the low ridge, it started to snow quite heavily, but fortunately it didn't last long, and by the time we returned back to the pit, it had all mostly cleared up and we were treated to beautiful sunset colors. It was gonna be a long, dark walk (and ski) back from here!
Dusk at the Gravel Pit
Clouds and Twilight
Fuzzy Allen
Day did not quite turn to night, because a nearly full moon cast a pretty decent glow over everything. I was able to walk through the logged area with my headlamp off.

Back across the Opalescent and back at our skiis, I switched back into very stiff ski boots. With the help of some vapour barrier socks, I was able to keep any remaining moisture away from my feet. After scraping off some of the residual ice from this morning from my skiis, we set off along the road. The ski back along our tracks on the road was excellent, with nice long, gliding strides. We were back at the cutoff trail in no time flat. We'd learned our lession this morning. We decided to leave our ski boots on, swtich to snowshoes, and hoist our skiis over our shoulders. There simply wasn't a good enough base along the cutoff trail for adequate skiing. Plus it was dark now.

Along the way, I carefully noted the fetid hole where I crashed through in the morning. The trap had frozen over already - obviously carefully starting to reset itself for the next unsuspecting victim! All it needed now was a nice cheery sprinkling of fresh snow!

Arriving back at the skiiable section of road, we again glided along, thankful for the change of pace offered by switching to an alternate type of motion. We skiied past the old wrecked cabins (which now seem to be undergoing some repairs), and we were soon at the crossing of Lake Jimmy. By 8:10pm, we were back at the car. Fourteen hours - quite a marathon, but now... Allen is complete! yay.

In the end, our use of the skiis probably didn't make much of a difference timewise. When conditions were right, they were definitely faster than hiking, but our "incidents" plus the time it took to switch between skiis and snowshoes pretty much ate into the time benefits. Still, though, the variety offered by different modes of travel on the long flat in and out was welcome.
Interactive Trackmap & Photo Points - Allen Mtn - Click map to expand
Allen Hike (Combined)
Start Time: 6:19a.m.
End Time: 8:12p.m.
Duration: 13h53m
Distance: 28.56 km (17.75 mi)
Average Speed: 2.1 km/hr (1.3 mph)
Start Elevation: 1789ft (545m) *
Max Elevation: 4399ft (1341m) *
Min Elevation: 1745ft (532m) *
End Elevation: 1779ft (542m) *
* : +/- 75 feet
Total Elevation Gain: 2946ft (898m) *
Total Elevation Loss: 2954ft (900m) *
* : +/- 75 feet
Elevation Graph
Elevation over Distance
Elevation over Time
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(last message posted on Tue. Jan. 22, 11:56 EST 2008 by Clay)
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