Posts Tagged With: Humphreys Peak

Living Outside

Living outside with the kids for a week has been pretty epic. There is no “down time” when you live outside (and have a pretty intense phobia of bears coming into your tent like I do). While spending some time in Flagstaff we hiked Humphrey’s and little Tru rocked it! Little Man hiked just about 5 miles (its 10 in total) and napped on my back some as well. This guy can be stubborn (and super loud!) but really just wants to be one of the big kids. From the hike he ended up with BOTH his big toenails purple and a blister under one of them. This guy can be quite the trooper! Currently we are kicking it around Colorado and having some smaller adventures.  Soon we will head up some 14ers and see how tired we can make this Momma!

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5 kids. 1 Mommy. 1 Big Peak. Humphreys.

I don’t like to compare my kids to other peoples, I get it, they are all unique and special in their own way… But mine are pretty badass!

Tenny is 4. She is adorable, funny, a pain in the ass, and full of energy.  She loves running but gymnastics is definitely her thing. This tiny little body is packed with muscle…. but she is only 4…

Most of the time when we hike she gets worn, because wearing two babies is apparently my thing

Spending time in colorado she spent a lot of time on her feet. The largest hike being nearly 4 miles with just under 3,000 of elevation gain (Island Lake). After hiking up, she slept on my back majority of the way down. Although she is clearly tough, the idea of taking a 4-year-old on an all day hike (oh yeah and 4 other children) alone is somewhat frightening. Apparently I like watching my life flash before my eyes…

When +1 said he had work to do in Flagstaff I said “great we will join you! I want to take the kids up Humphreys myself”. I’m pretty sure to anyone that just sounds stupid. 5 kids, age 11-3, almost 5 miles  and over 3,000 feet of climbing, sound like a good time?

They were all thrilled to be woken up early.

They were all thrilled to be woken up early.

Getting ready for an all day trek with everyone is stressful in itself. We rolled up the the parking lot and they all ran off to play. I did my best to round them up for sunscreen and to throw some packs on the big ones. Tenny was stoked to hike and took off in a sprint, which resulted in a potty break before we could even hit the trees “I have to pee now Mommy!” She almost got off the trail…

And we are off!

And we are off!

 

The first half hour she ran, a lot. Girl was excited to be on her own two feet. By an hour in it was snack time, eat and hike peeps we gotta keep moving.

Just keep moving.

Just keep moving… in American Apparel leggings of course.

*Note- I do not have a lot of pictures. My phone is super ghetto and the battery does not last long anymore. Even on airplane mode trying to save the battery for as long as possibly, I was nervous I wouldn’t be able to get a picture at the top if I wasn’t careful. Sorry…

So we snacked every half an hour or so and they kept moving. They love to play together while hiking and their was some sort of Pokemon/horse game going on. I was happy they didn’t need me at this point as Tru was in the worst mood ever! My Little hiking buddy needed a nap and was not having it for some reason.. ugh… there may have been threats of bear attacks if he continued to scream which did cause them to subside enough for him to fall asleep for a while. Pokemon/horse continued on.

I missed a turn. I know I suck. So we scrambled up. Teagan continued to question me and all I responded was “up”. We trudged on with Tajh behind Tenny to keep her from sliding down. Eventually we found the trail, hit the saddle, and into the rocks larger then Tenny.

Up!

Up!

“Tajh just push her butt up” I commanded after watching him try and have her step on his hand, which took forever. “This is awkward…” because he is 11 and everything is awkward.  At no point have we rested at all, I knew we didn’t have time in the day for that. We did though move off the trail if anyone was coming toward us. One of these times Tenny took the opportunity to lay down on a large rock “I just want to go to bed Mommy”, “Yes hunny, me too, lets go”.

So sleepy...

So sleepy…

She picked a nice view.

She picked a nice view.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On we went. If was windy and cold up top and holding hands was necessary to help the Little Lady up the steps larger then she. No one was complaining, other then about being cold. I sent the Bigs ahead as soon as we saw the summit, and not gonna lie, I got pretty darn excited hiking up with Tenny.

Up go the Big's

Up go the Bigs

 

5 hours and 5 minutes after starting Tenny summited Humphreys Peak.

My Littles.

My Littles.

Second nap of the day for this guy.

Second nap of the day for this guy.

Snacks

Snacks

 

Rest

Rest

 

Snacks

Snacks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We sat and she ate her peanut butter cup (yup just one). The Big’s and I discussed letting her take a nap, but at this point it was pretty late. After a 30 minute rest we started down the mountain again. They discussed how heading straight down the scree would be much fast “see mommy then we just head through the trees to the car”. Sigh… That’s a no.

Having left without our sandwiches we had only snacks all day, everyone was starving. We daydreamed about pizza, all of us, and hiked. The horse game came back (no pokemon this time) and Tenny fell, “That was (insert horses name)’s fault. I’m ok”.  Although none of them ever had imaginary friends, they really commit when playing in the mountains.

We finished with only pizza on our minds, 4 1/2 hours after leaving the summit (down is hard when you are super short). Tenny was asleep within 2 minutes of driving but woke in time to eat. They probably all passed right out at bedtime you assume? Of course not!  They would not go to sleep! Does anything exhaust my Littles? I’ve yet to find it! When asked what he favorite part of the day was Tenny responded “seeing the top”, yup, that’s my girl. All my Littles continue to amazing me. I’m one proud Momma.

All 5 kids took in 3,850 calories over the nearly 10 hour day.

 

 

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Humphreys

And so our big adventure begins. For our first stop, we decided to take advantage of some local adventure that Arizona has to offer. We stopped in Flagstaff to make a little jaunt up Humphreys Peak, which tops out at 12,633’ above the Coconino National Forest. This also allowed us to try everything out (Gear, Food, Clothing, Etc.), before we are in Colorado and wrecking every 14’er we can get our happy little feet on.

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As we begin any epic adventure, it is super-critical to keep in mind that planning is important, but being flexible is mandatory for success and happiness. We packed up our nutrition (See list below), water, Kids Camelbaks, The North Face wind/rain Shells, Ruffwear pack for our furry pack mule, our mei tai’s for wearing the littles, and of course everyones’ Buff’s for the day. We headed up from the Humphreys Trailhead in lot 9 of the Snow Bowl Parking lot West of Flagstaff.

First step is always to strap the hoodlum on your back!

First step is always to strap the hoodlum on your back!

Things always look amazing at the start of a hike with kids. No summit to be seen, no idea what the terrain will hold, everyone is optimistic. When you have 5, that optimism can’t be expected to last long. While asking “how much futher is it?”, or “when are we going to get there?” and other terrible kid questions that we don’t allow, someone is bound to bonk. About an hour in Tay (6) was clearly falling into the “not enough nutrition or water” category. Using incentives (not bribes, incentives are very different!) sparingly is always important. We gave a time, “hey would you like a chocolae brownie Clif Z-bar in another half an hour? We can take a nice break them”, and that helped hold him off for a while longer. Although that “half an hour” may have only been 15 minutes but luckily none of them wear watches. There were some tears during this long, dreary, sad walk to the speacial treat (they never get these unless they are doing something senious), lucky his Buff came in handy to wipe them (and his messy face) away.

 

Sad Tay. Just a little Bonk, nothing a little special snack can't handle!

Sad Tay. Just a little Bonk, nothing a little special snack can’t handle!

 

 

The summit brought winds that scared many of the littles (maybe an adult too). At one point Tea and Sabrina lay face down attempting to avoid the high winds which seemed like they could push both of them off the mountain. Tajh on the other hand loved jumping from rock to rock and hiding from the winds. Frolicking around the summit screaming “I’m on the top of Arizona!” This kid is a hiker, through and through. Funny to note in almost any race he and Tea race he is the first to break down while Tea has a head down, no complaints approach. Yet, it was Tea who was complaining and unhappy at points during this hike, while Tajh was overly positive forcing us all to make threats on the safety of his nose.

Boys at the summit!

Boys at the summit!

 

 

 

Ladies at the summit!

Ladies at the summit!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tajh in his element.

Tajh in his element.

Heading down is always welcome. Although some of the children’s feet were wrecked, there was a much more positive vibe in the group. They were proud of themselves, happy to have accomplished this, and happy to be heading back to the van. The little two were worn on our backs for almost 8 1/2hours, and they were happy to be on the ground again! This is just the begining of our adventures, but by far this is the hardest mountain we have conquered, to date. I see our failures (not feeding them early enough in the hike) and our wins (staying positive despite this). We are ready. Ready for the next amazing adventure we find ourselves in, or really just the next time we get to spend 8 ½ hours with nothing to pay attention to except putting one foot in front of the other and talking to our little people, that’s epic.

Finally the poor Little Littles got a break from being on our backs!

Finally the poor Little Littles got a break from being on our backs!

 

Totally worth the view!

Totally worth the view!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nutrition:

Three packages Black Cherry Shot Bloks,

Strawberry Stinger Waffle,

Two Strawberry Banana Gu Gels,

Cherry Lime Gu Gel,

Chocolate Raspberry Gu Gel,

Chocolate Cherry Clif Shot Gel,

Two Peanut Butter Cookie Lara Bars,

Three Chocolate Brownie cliff z bars,

Oatmeal Cookie cliff z bar,

Four peanut butter date sandwiches

 

$46 worth of Chipotle… yup we were those assholes holding up the line for 6 burritos, a kids meal, and chips. Sorry…

 

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