Why is it called the Garden Wall?

I think the picture answers the question better than any words I could come up with. It was a spectacular walk. Thanks for showing it to me Paul.


The Garden Wall

photo by AHOB staff photographer Paul Ollig

After a refreshing lunch in the chalet's dining room with it's cool granite floor, we begin the end of the day's walk. Over my shoulder is a great look back at the Garden Wall. That morning we enjoyed a nice stroll with spectacular views of the glacial valley. We traveled from the ridge on the far right of the picture to this point hardly breaking a sweat. Though the distance we had left to cover was less than 4 miles - all downhill, that was all about to change.

We arrived at the loop where we had left Paul's car early that morning hot, sweaty, and plenty tired. We passed several hikers heading in the other direction that afternoon. The look on each of their faces reminded me things could have been far worse for me. I could have been headed up like they were.


Granite Park Chalet

Here we are enjoying the balcony at the Chalet. Paul met the staff doing some ranger training stuff at the beginning of the season. So we got the red carpet treatment. If you are familiar with Night of the Grizzlies, the place the young woman in the book met her demise is just over my shoulder. Below is the view from one of the rooms.


Even More from the Highline Trail

This may give you a better perspective on the steepness of which I blogged yesterday. See that rather visible line that looks like a switchback hiking trail? Well, that's not a trail. That's the going to the sun road. Turn your attention to the red circle on the left. That's 2 hikers on the trail a few hundred yards behind us.


More from the Highline Trail

When I got my first look at this section of the trail the day before the hike, I have to admit my fear of heights started to get the better of me. I even expressed my concern to Paul that evening. He convinced me it was only the first couple of miles that would be like that. So off we went.

Well, the trail hugs a very steep slope for most of the 9 miles to Granite Park Chalet. But after the first couple of miles I was fine. The feeling I had reminded me of being on the side of a mountain on downhill ski's. Probably because most the time I've spent on steep slopes like that were while skiing. It was all sort of oddly familiar. And during the descent to the valley, I would have welcomed ski's and snow over the pounding of the dirt on the switchbacks.

(photo by AHOB staff photographer Paul Ollig)