Ugh. Ugh ugh ugh.
Nobody ever accused Mailbox of being an easy climb, but except for the first few times it's never been this hard. Even with the rain, wind, ice, and snow it shouldn't have been this hard to summit. Or taken me as long as it did.
Perhaps the biggest problem was that I haven't been up there since May 2015. It's not like I haven't been hiking over those nine months, but there's something special about climbing four thousand feet in two and a half miles. When you lose your conditioning the climb becomes really, really hard.
I'll forgive myself 20 minutes for the conditions and frequent gear changes. (Stop to take off coat. Stop to put on crampons. Breaking trail. Stop to put coat back on.) But even that puts me an hour off my all time best pace.
At the risk of sounding like another New Year's resolution doomed to failure I think I'll have to get back to checking the mail on Sundays. Well, unless I get a better offer.
Want to come along? Be at the trailhead at 6am or give me a better place to work out.
And Treen? She's invincible. She rocked it and had a great nap afterward.