Sunday, August 23, 2009
Grand Tetons, part 2: funniest Teton memories
The Grand Teton vacation with the P’s & B’s tends to turn into a “survival of the fittest” type competition. Thus, we end up with many funny, extreme sporting stories. Below are some of my funnier memories. Please feel free to add your own funny Grand Teton story (or similar) to the comment section. (cue Patty B - you've got the best story!)
#1 – My sis & BB getting chased by a buffalo while canoeing. They quickly converted from lazy to quick paddlers. (see pic above)
#2 – In 2006, KL joined us for the whole week. She’s a good trooper, but being from CA, she had no idea what to expect or how to prepare. The 1st hike of the week was a 10-hour hike from the base of the Grand Teton to the top of the gondola. This hike has gorgeous scenery – mountain lakes, streams, Aspen grooves, meadows of wild flowers, and lots of animals. It also includes walking up and over multiple mountain ridges and hiking on loose rock. Hot sun is common in the morning. Severe thunderstorms, lightning, and hail are typical in the afternoon. During this hike, we encountered all nature elements. We had to hug trees, slide/sprint down muddy slopes from 1 patch of trees to another in between lightning storms & hail, and ran up the last ridge (steep hill with some lose rock) so that we could make it to the gondola in time to take the last one down for the night. During this hike, K had no sunscreen, no coat and not enough water. We later learned that she spent the whole hike worrying about the “rock-climbing” at the end of the hike because we had not adequately explained the “climbing loose rock” term. She was quite a trooper and put on an impressive showing escaping with only a few sunburns, cuts, and sore muscles. She also suggested that we should make an extreme sporting reality show out of our vacation – taking other friends along to see who survives. (Btw - She was also a trooper hiking up half-dome in Yosemite also. Especially considering we purposely did not tell her what we were hiking and that it involved an ascent requiring the use of chains up a rock face)
#3 – Dad buying a wooden bear as artwork (like the kind that stands 2.5 ft tall and holds a sign saying “Welcome Home”) and thinking that he could take it home without Mom noticing/approving it. During the week, he bought the bear in town and tried to hide the bear in the backseat of his car. He hoped no one would find it until it was back in CO, at which point it would no longer be possible to return it. I’m not sure how he thought he’d get away with it considering that KL & I were using the car that week and both of us would find a giant bear in the backseat something to ask questions about. He did seem to be going crazy when, before we drove to town in his car, he pointed at the car and repeatedly said “don’t hurt the bear.” Since he’s not a guy to name his car “bear”, we continued questioning him and looking. At this point we realized the bear was in the car and Mom didn’t know about it. Although he proclaimed “Mom’s not the boss of me. I decide about the bear,” he sure did look nervous when we mentioned it to Mom. The bear now sits, with a Hawaiian lei around its neck, in their house in CO.
#4 – Mom falling out of the raft on the Big Kahuna wave. She hasn’t been rafting since.
#5 – Bass Dog barking at the moose. He wanted to jump out of the car and chase them.
#6 - TP & HP going on a bear hunt (song included). Absolutely entertaining.
#7 – (This story technically didn’t happen in the Grand Tetons, but it’s very Grand Teton-esque) In 2007, RR visited me/my family in CO for a weekend. During this weekend, we went to Cheyenne Frontier Days to see the largest outdoor rodeo and a country concert. Being the good sport that he is, RR really got into the country mood and bought a rodeo hat, rode the mechanical bull (staying on for an impressive ~30 sec), and did some line dancing. He was having fun, and apparently others noticed this as well… a cowboy was following him and making flirtatious gestures to him. Apparently, RR had impressed the cowboy, especially after his performance on the bull. :)
I'm in none of these stories as the Grand Tetons is the one place that I seem to not have done anything stupid... yet (or at least that I can remember). I have plenty of stupid me stories from other trips. I'm the biggest klutz.