Eats and Endorphins – Part II + Summertime Obsessions

Here is Part II of the Seattle/Vancouver (2nd anniversary) trip.

Although it’s been over a week since we’ve been back, I have to tell you about my favorite adventure.

Eric suggested a hike in Vancouver.

I naturally thought it was a great idea.

The hike is called “Grouse Grind“… I should have known.

I read some not-so-happy reviews the night before about the mountain – from both locals and tourists. There were warnings that this hike is more of a serious workout than a scenic stroll up the mountain. I thought people were exaggerating.

Turns out the were NOT. The same warnings greeted us as we were about to ascend.

Warning

This hike was a grind.

Not a long distance – just around 1.8 miles – but it’s all stairs. You do not stop climbing stairs until you reach the top. The friendly people on the trail make you laugh here and there, you look up once in a while to see the tall trees, but mostly you are just looking down and climbing stairs. Elevation gain of about 2,800 feet.

Despite Because of it all, it was my favorite hike. Yes, I might be a little crazy, but I know I’m not alone.

Short enough, so the torture wasn’t  too long, but hard enough that I was thanking my body for getting me to the top. The view was spectacular.

Looking down, it was hard to believe that my two legs got me that far in such a short amount of time.

The big bonus is the cafe at the top. You can kick your feet up, enjoy the view, and reward yourself with some iced tea or a beer, while looking out into the mountains.

We rested up and took the gondola back – another reason this hike absolutely rocked.

gandola

The view from above.

Grouse Grind

View from Above

The view from the gondola.

View from Gondola

Now that I’ve spent a week in this steamy heat, I am cooling off with watermelon. What is it about the heat + exercise that makes me crave watermelon? Not just a slice or two, but the entire thing! It’s so refreshing, hydrating, and sweet. I don’t bother messing with it, I just dice it into big cubes and munch on it all day.

I’m also enjoying eating dinner outside since we’ve been lucky enough that it actually cools down. Simple dinners – with gorgeous farmer’s market food that’s minimally cooked – has been so good to me.

Here is a plate of fresh, ripe, heirloom tomatoes with sunflower seed pesto. No added oil, just a little avocado for the creamy texture. Sweet red onions on top. Divine.

tomatoes2

tomatoes3

Have a fresh, cool, and refreshing week.

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One Comment

  1. alison
    Posted October 1, 2013 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Sounds like a tougher version of some of my fave hikes from when I lived in Portland, in my early 20’s: Multnomah Falls & Beacon Rock (both are in the Columbia Gorge).

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