The Celestine Road is a barley evolved horse packing trail, a single lane that travels at the edge of steep cliffs. When we were about 7km from the trailhead, we realized that the road is only open in the direction we were going for another 40 mins. Just enough time for our shuttle driver to get out before it was only open in the opposite direction. The rule is to prevent the chance of meeting another vehicle bumper to bumper at the edge of a cliff. Eyes read from the smoke, blown in from BC forest fires, Tori Buck and I climbed out quickly and said goodbye to our driver, Johannas from Wild Blue Yonder Rafting – Grande Cache. Would the fires come any closer? We were a little worried. Already tired when we got to the trailhead, we still had another 20 km to go that day.
The beginning of the trail goes through dense trees, it was fairly monotonous which added to the burden of our heavy packs. No beautiful views to get your mind off of how sore and exhausted you are. But the scenery would soon get very dramatic. Completely beat at the end of our first day, we thought we’d bitten off more than we could chew, we’d need to average 20 km a day for 8 days to finish on time – we hadn’t brought much extra food. We worried we’d never be able to make it.
Broken again after Day 2, our campsite was in reach of the Rock Lake trail. A day’s walk out, and our last chance to bail before we headed deep into the wilderness. At that point, we knew we could do it if we could continue to average 20 km a day, but I already had blisters that would only get worse. Sore, and totally gassed, but feeling good, we spoke about bailing at camp on that night. It wasn’t much of a discussion though. We would push on. As hard as the days had been, particularly the last 5 km of each day – it felt so good to get to camp.
Once there, it’s like your toils didn’t matter anymore. You’d made your goal, and you didn’t have to worry about not making it anymore. It was very rewarding, and we were already becoming addicted to the challenges and rewards of this tough trip. Travel Alberta Eureka! Tilley Endurables Williams Lures #Silva Thermacell Outdoors The Original Bug Shirt Company #Mountains #Backpacking