Although we might have gotten married at the VOC's Brian Waddington Hut, their Brew Hut holds a special place for our family - especially with kids. It was our first backcountry overnight trip with F (pre blog days), my first winter backcountry overnight with F but not Line (even though we didn't actually make it), Line's first overnight trip with both kids but not me (she made it), and our fist splitting of the party due to kid meltdown (in F's defence there was a lot of bugs... but N handled them just fine).
This fall (last weekend in September) it became my first backcountry overnight with both kids. With Line at about 8 months pregnant my primary goal was to get them out of the house so she could relax a bit, and Brew seemed like a good destination. My friends Pascale and Ignacio would join us with their twins, who are in between F and N in age. On the hike up F often hiked with the twins, while I hiked with N. This let N hike at her own pace, with me carrying her on my shoulders intermittently to catch up to the group. It felt like it was still summer as we left the vehicles wearing shorts and T-shirts.
Snow started when we hit the alpine, but fortunately I'd brought the kids' snowsuits and snow boots. They were a mixed blessing - the snowsuits meant that we didn't need to worry about the cold, but F's thick snowpants also made it noticeably harder for her to move around. We needed to stop for extra snack breaks to recharge. Nova was carried about 3/4 of the way, but Fenya made it all the way to the hut under her own power in 6 hours. By the time we got to the hut and were finished dinner it was dark, but the hut was quite crowded so I went to set up the tent I'd brought. It was very windy, but I found a relatively sheltered location near the col with Mt. Brew to set it up while the kids played inside. There was a bit of a situation in the tent, with a disagreement about who would sleep on which side of who, but eventually the kids settled down into the huge pile of down sleeping bags. The next morning there was time to make some quick snowmen before hiking back down. We took a slightly different way on the return trip, cutting out the stop at Brew Lake. F warned us that this wasn't the way we came on the way up; I was quite impressed that she noticed, given that she was still a month away from being 6 years old. There was some complaining on the way down, but the views were beautiful and overall the hike was quite nice.
Say Nuth Khaw Yum
Discovery Islands Bike loop
East Coast Trail
Recent tips and thought
Pandemic pondering and wandering
Tweaking our haul-a-day
Making kids crampons
Digging a snowcave
Make a kid towing harness