Pyrenees High Route section hike: Day 9

Bit of a bugger of a day with a lot of up and down but not much progress made. 

It started off OK and we hiked down the valley and started up the other side. The other side was a lot longer and higher and it maybe took three hours to get to the top. 

I think I may be suffering from a lack of a zero day. Carrying a pack, which is probably 16kgs at the moment, for 9 days in a row takes it out of me.

We decided not to do the Passage d’Orteig which I was glad of so we had lunch instead and the started down the other side of the pass. 

Unfortunately we got map smart and decided it would be a good idea to try an alternate instead of going up the zigzags. Initially this went well. We circled the lake until we reached a dam and lots of people who had come up on a small train.

After a coffee we started up out alternate. Angelynn was a little worried that it might be closed as there was not signpost but we carried on and initially the route was good with two beautiful lakes. But then there were boulders, then scree, then more scree and then a steep hill covered in scree.

At this point the decision was made not to continue on. We had no idea of the condition of the track which was now invisible or the condition of the rest of the valley further up.

It is to Angelynn’s credit that she supported this decision. Her general idea is that if you don’t push it you don’t succeed and she hates backtracking. I tend to be more along the lines of just do another way, it’s no skin off my nose.

We decided to backtrack and camp at the first lake which has actually turned out very well. Parts of us are clean. I somewhat wish Logan was here as the water is super cold. My feet hurt for about five minutes after getting out.

I also saw my first marmot. Scared the crap out of me the little bugger. I thought it was a bird making the high pitched noises. Turns out it was these guys. Bloody loud too. Especially when they are five meters away from you.

So tomorrow it is back around the lake and up the zigzags. Hopefully the weather holds out for us.

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